Just how safe is tandem skydiving? This is the typical question that runs through every first-time skydiver’s mind. While skydiving in itself is an extreme sport, tandem skydiving lessens these extremes by providing you with an instructor who will be harnessed to you as you exit the plane. The instructor will then continue to guide you throughout the process until you land. This article will go over how safe tandem skydiving really is, and what to keep in mind the next time you plan on skydiving.
1. It Is Regulated
Skydiving is a regulated sport with the United States Parachute Association (USPA). They are in charge of vetting and approving equipment, instructors and also licensing the companies that provide skydiving services. The USPA also records data on injuries and fatalities to accurately determine the progress of safety standards since the adoption of skydiving as a mainstreaming sport.
Going to a skydive center with instructors and facilities that are approved by the USPA should leave you rest assured since the center will adhere to professional standards and must pass set exams. The equipment that is used must also be up to standards.
As with anything else, skydiving both tandem and solo has greatly benefited from technological advancement. The most significant development though was the deployment of a reserve parachute. The reserve parachute is packed and maintained by an FAA-certified rigger. This means should the first parachute malfunction in any way; the reserve takes over. Better yet, advancement in technology has brought about Automatic Activation Devices, or AADs. These are minute electronic gadgets that allow the automatic deployment of the reserve parachutes in the event the jumper is unable to do so.
3. Statistics and Comparisons to Other Activities
The one thing that inspires confidence in tandem skydiving is the recent data on injuries and fatalities. In 2015, the USPA achieved the lowest fatality rate in the history of the sport at just 0.006 fatalities for every 1000 jumps. These are for the general sport; tandem skydiving specifically had just 0.002 for every 1,000 jumps. Injuries which are more common were recorded at 0.55 for every 1000 jumps. These rates are far lower compared to even your daily commute.
To further ensure your tandem skydiving experience happens without any glitches, it is essential you follow all instructions given by your instructor and trust him or her throughout the jump to ensure a safe landing.
How Safe is Tandem Skydiving?
So, just how safe is tandem skydiving? The short answer is: very safe. It is very scary, but that is its nature and what makes the sport thrilling. However, the regulations set by USPA, advancement in technology and the use of professional instructors make it one of the safest sport activities you will engage in. The statistics should leave you feeling assured, so don’t be afraid to take that leap.