sketched the patterns for the first parachute. The parachute weighed 187 pounds and was made of yarn, rope, and wood. However, the 10,000 foot hop consisted of Nicholas cutting away at 7,000 feet and using a normal parachute to complete his journey to the ground.
Here are some other sky diving facts that you may find interesting:
1. Airborne warfare started in 1918. The 1st infantry was the very first to go airborne. It was the U.S military dropping a unit from a bomber in the skies on the town of Metz. This was the brain child of Lewis H. Brereton, a young soldier on the team of General Billy Mitchell.
2. The highest parachute jump happened in August 1960 by Captain Kittinger from nearly 102,800 feet. The free fall lasted more than 4 minutes in which Kittinger’s free fall speed was almost 715 mph. That mean he was in free fall mode for almost 85,000 feet.
3. There have been cases in which military planes have gone down in bodies of water and pilots have used their parachutes to save their lives. They’ve deployed their parachutes underwater and been pulled up from the parachute as well as sparking their life vests.
4. The smallest combat jump occurred July 3, 1944 at 175 feet, which was unintentional due to an altimeter error. The cheapest planned combat jump was from 250 feet in Crete.
5. The lowest mass strategic jump was 143 feet.
6. He leaped at 3,500 feet. A woman at the age of 90 wanted to dive for her birthday to demonstrate that age is just a number. She jumped from 12,000 feet.
7. Again, this indicates that any age person can jump. The jump was a tandem jump, of course and the leap was created at 10,000 feet.
8. To show how teams can have a good time, on February 6, 2004, a group of 357 joined hands and stayed in formation for 6 minutes on their 7th attempt over Takhli, Thailand.
9. You don’t have to think about the free fall creating that”heart attack-inducing” roller coaster drop feeling. The feeling is actually one like floating and the air resistance creates a degree of support. Free falling is like a human being taking flight. The air flow is constant and allows for aerial maneuvers that are a good deal of fun.
10. On May 20, 2001, Michael Zang broke the world record by completing 500 jumps in a day. This meant his jumps needed to be done in cycles of less than 3 minutes and he finished these jumps from 2,100 feet.
• Approximately 2 million parachute jumps occur yearly. The average number of fatalities is 35 and that is less than 1 percent of the jumps that take place.
• There is really no age requirement, but it is advised that individuals be around age 18. Additionally it is essential that the sky diver is in reasonably good health. As shown above with the 92, 90, and 100 year old jumpers, there is no upper limit.
• The charge to sky dive usually consists of the cost of the hop and all equipment needed to make the jump.
• The jolt by the parachute is not painful and you may use the parachute controls to direct it to your desired landing spot. That way, in case you somehow get off course, you can set yourself back on course.
• The landing is a soft landing. You gently land on your feet and step like you are stepping from a curb.
• There are a lot of security precautions put in place. You’ve got your main parachute, which is larger in a tandem jump, and you have your drogue parachute, which is a parachute the instructor releases shortly after the leap to slow the jump down. Slowing down it prevents the leap from being as noisy, allowing for schooling. Slowing it down also means having the ability to enjoy the jump and for it to be a little less scary.
• It takes about 10 to 15 jumps before a student can jump with no teacher. Some may require more jumps than that until they are secure enough to undertake the sky solo.
These are all terrific facts that you know whether you’re taking your first tandem sky dive or you’re a seasoned jumper.