Friday Freakout: BOOM... Broken Parachute Lines + Reserve Line Twists

Zej Moczydlowski
ago
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What happened

This guy was helping a friend work on their sit fly. They break off, he tracks away nicely, waves off, pitches, and BOOM! You can actually see one of the broken lines fly past his face! He looks, knows what's up, and immediately chops. He doesn't have an RSL and his altimeter had rolled over on his wrist, so he pulls his reserve immediately as well. He thinks his arm caught one of the deploying risers, resulting in heavy line twists on the reserve, but he does a commendable job getting out of them and lands back at the DZ.

Why did it happen

Gear Maintenance?

We really don't know why the lines broke, but — while this was a decently loaded canopy (a JFX 114 loaded at 2.3) — it doesn't look like a particularly hard opening. So we're guessing the lines were worn out and the jumper kept thinking he could get a few more jumps out of them before he replaced them. There's really no way to be sure but that's our guess and if that was the case, then this video is a great example about why you should replace worn lines.

How could it be prevented

Change Your Line Sets!

You know how the canopy manufacturers, your coaches, riggers, and packers are always telling you to replace your lines? Yeah. You know where we're going with this one... it's really easy to keep thinking that you can get a few more jumps out of those raggedy frayed lines but there's a reason the previous owner gave you a discount on the canopy while telling you that you should probably change them out in fifty jumps or so.

Additional Notes

Good Decision Making

IF this jumper was jumping on frayed out lines (again, we don't know for sure if that was the case) then he made a lot of good decisions after that one bad decision.

  1. He immediately recognized the issue, knew it wasn't salvageable, and cutaway. By doing this, he saved as much altitude as possible. This video shows exactly why that's important. This jumper got out of his reserve line twists quickly, but he was the first to admit that the second he saw those lines, all he was thinking was "I'm going to fight this thing all the way until I hit the ground." When you have an issue with your reserve, every foot of altitude matters. The best way to maximize the amount you have, is by chopping ASAP.
  2. He didn't sacrifice altitude for body position. Admittedly, the jumper said he wishes that he had, because he believes that pulling unstable is what gave him those line twists. However, we tend to disagree with that attitude. Having your reserve above your head as quickly as possible is going to give you the time you need to deal with issues and make a plan for where you're going to land.

 

 

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What happened

This guy was helping a friend work on their sit fly. They break off, he tracks away nicely, waves off, pitches, and BOOM! You can actually see one of the broken lines fly past his face! He looks, knows what's up, and immediately chops. He doesn't have an RSL and his altimeter had rolled over on his wrist, so he pulls his reserve immediately as well. He thinks his arm caught one of the deploying risers, resulting in heavy line twists on the reserve, but he does a commendable job getting out of them and lands back at the DZ.

Why did it happen

Gear Maintenance?

We really don't know why the lines broke, but — while this was a decently loaded canopy (a JFX 114 loaded at 2.3) — it doesn't look like a particularly hard opening. So we're guessing the lines were worn out and the jumper kept thinking he could get a few more jumps out of them before he replaced them. There's really no way to be sure but that's our guess and if that was the case, then this video is a great example about why you should replace worn lines.

How could it be prevented

Change Your Line Sets!

You know how the canopy manufacturers, your coaches, riggers, and packers are always telling you to replace your lines? Yeah. You know where we're going with this one... it's really easy to keep thinking that you can get a few more jumps out of those raggedy frayed lines but there's a reason the previous owner gave you a discount on the canopy while telling you that you should probably change them out in fifty jumps or so.

Additional Notes

Good Decision Making

IF this jumper was jumping on frayed out lines (again, we don't know for sure if that was the case) then he made a lot of good decisions after that one bad decision.

  1. He immediately recognized the issue, knew it wasn't salvageable, and cutaway. By doing this, he saved as much altitude as possible. This video shows exactly why that's important. This jumper got out of his reserve line twists quickly, but he was the first to admit that the second he saw those lines, all he was thinking was "I'm going to fight this thing all the way until I hit the ground." When you have an issue with your reserve, every foot of altitude matters. The best way to maximize the amount you have, is by chopping ASAP.
  2. He didn't sacrifice altitude for body position. Admittedly, the jumper said he wishes that he had, because he believes that pulling unstable is what gave him those line twists. However, we tend to disagree with that attitude. Having your reserve above your head as quickly as possible is going to give you the time you need to deal with issues and make a plan for where you're going to land.

 

 

Coming Soon

Hang tight, our new comments system and community features will be live soon.

to join the conversation.

One comment on “Friday Freakout: BOOM... Broken Parachute Lines + Reserve Line Twists”

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