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Safety of Parachute Jump Operations
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 Safety of Parachute Jump Operations

Summary

Abstract: This special investigation report describes the results of a National Transportation Safety Board review of 32 accidents that involved parachute jump (“or skydiving”) operations and that occurred between 1980 and 2008. The report identifies the following recurring safety issues: inadequate aircraft inspection and maintenance; pilot performance deficiencies in basic airmanship tasks, such as preflight inspections, weight and balance calculations, and emergency and recovery procedures; and inadequate Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) oversight and direct surveillance of parachute operations. Parachute jump operators, many of which transport parachutists for revenue, maintain their aircraft under regulatory provisions that require little FAA oversight. Lack of operation-specific pilot training is also discussed. Safety recommendations to the FAA and to the United States Parachute Association are included. Appendix A details other current and past Safety Board recommendations related to parachute operations.
NTSB Number: SIR0801
NTIS Number: PB2009-917001
Adopted: 9/16/2008