Monday, August 3, 2020

Safety Day

March 14, 2020

In early spring, the skydiving season for much of the country is just crawling out of hibernation. Most skydivers don’t jump through the cold months as often as they do in the summer, and their skills are a bit rusty. That’s when Safety Day comes. Safety Day is typically held on the second Saturday in March; however, some drop zones hold it on alternate dates. Established in 1997 from an idea by Patti Chernis, Safety Day provides a worldwide forum at local drop zones to prepare jumpers for the year ahead. Safety Day promotes safety programs and helps inform jumpers of new developments and review important information and procedures. Activities typically include hands-on review and practice of safety procedures, seminars from skydiving operation professionals and experts, equipment evaluations and more. Most days end with a social get together. USPA encourages all jumpers of all experience levels to attend. Every drop zone should host Safety Day.

Register Your DZ For Safety Day

Safety Day T-Shirts

$6 each S-XL (add $2 for XXL+) plus shipping (no quantity requirements). For orders of 12 or more shirts, drop zones can add their logos to the sleeves at $1.50 more per shirt.

Order Deadline
February 24 for events held on March 14—or at least two weeks in advance of your alternative event date. Orders received after may incur additional charges.

Lynne Smith at; (316) 264-1321


Submit Safety Day Write-Up

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Chesley H. Judy Award

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Participating Drop Zones

Skydive Alabama
Alaska Skydive Center (4/7)
Skydive Arizona
Skydive Phoenix
Skydive Fayetteville
SkyDance SkyDiving
Skydive California
Skydive Coastal California
Skydive Elsinore
Skydive Hollister
Skydive Monterey Bay
Skydive Perris
Skydive San Diego (3/22)
Orange Skies Freefall Center (3/12)
Connecticut Parachutists, Inc (3/21)
Skydive City Zephyrhills (5/16)
Skydive Palatka
Skydive Spaceland Clewiston
Skydive Atlanta
Skydive Georgia
The Jumping Place
Sky Down Skydiving
Mid-America Sport Parachute Club
Skydive Chicago (4/3)
Jerry's Skydiving Circus
Skydive Indianapolis (4/4)
Skydive Windy City (3/29)
Des Moines Skydivers
Kansas State University Parachute Club
Skydive Kentucky
Cloud Chasers Skydiving (3/21)
Skydive New England (4/18)
Jumptown Skydiving (4/18)
Pepperell Skydiving Center (4/11)
Skydive Allegan (4/4)
Skydive Grand Haven (3/28)
Skydive Tecumseh (3/21)
GliderSports Skydiving
Skydive Kansas City
Lincoln Sport Parachute Club


Skydive Fyrosity
New Jersey
Skydive Cross Keys
Skydive Sussex (4/4)
New Mexico
Skydive New Mexico (3/7)
New York
Skydive the Falls (3/21)
Skydive the Ranch (3/21)
WNYSkydiving (3/21)
North Carolina
Skydive Little Washington (3/7)
Skydive Paraclete XP
North Dakota
Skydive Fargo! (3/28)
Alliance SPC/Skydive Rick’s (3/21)
Canton Air Sports
Skydive Cincinnati
Start Skydiving (3/7)
Oklahoma Skydiving Center
Skydive Awesome! (3/21)
Skydive Oregon
Pacific Northwest Skydiving Center
South Carolina
Skydive Carolina (3/7)
South Dakota
Skydive Adventures
Jump TN
Skydive East Tennessee
Skydive Tennessee
West Tennessee Skydiving
Skydive Spaceland-Dallas
Skydive Spaceland-Houston
Skydive Spaceland San Marcos
Skydive Temple (3/21)
Skydive Moab
Skydive Ogden
Skydive Utah (3/28)
Vermont Skydiving Adventures (4/18)
Skydive Orange (3/7)
Skydive Suffolk
Virginia Skydiving Center (3/21)
Kapowsin Air Sports
Rattlesnake Mountain Skydiving
West Plains Skydiving "The Ritz"
West Virginia
Skydive Milwaukee
Wisconsin Skydiving Center (4/11)
U.S. Territories
Skydive Puerto Rico (3/20)
Go Fly Paraquedismo
Sky Company Clube e Escola de Paraquedismo
WOW Paraquedismo
Skydive Sofia (2/23)
Skydive Vancouver
Skydive Colombia (4/10)
Costa Rica
Czech Republic
Dropzone Prostejov (3/7)
Skydive Pink Klatovy (3/7)
Dropzone Denmark (3/7)
Skydive Karjala
Skyhigh India (3/8)
Alimarche Skydive Fano (4/18)
Paracadismo Lago (3/20)
Skydive Cuautla
Skydive Taroudant (2/29)
Skydive Warszawa (3/21)
Skydive Portugal (2/9)
Skydive Transilvania (3/28)
TNT Brothers (3/22)
Skydive Vatulino (4/4)
SWS Academy
The following DZs are not current USPA Group Member or Foreign Affiliate Drop Zones, but have indicated they will be hosting a USPA Safety Day event.

A.B. Alcantarilla
Colorado Mountain Skydive
DZ Chayka (3/16)
DZ Kherson (3/18)
Madrid Fly

Plan For Safety Day At Your DZ

  1. Announce to your jumpers that your DZ is hosting a Safety Day.
    You may want to offer incentives to boost attendance. Many DZs offer free or discounted jump tickets, free food, discounted reserve pack jobs, door prizes, or any combination. And plan a party for afterward.
  2. Select a suitable location.
    Think comfort. If the hangar won't be warm or large enough, consider a restaurant, school gym, motel, or veteran's lodge. Anticipate a good turnout and be sure you have room for lectures, training-harness drills, and rig inspections.
  3. Put a training syllabus and staff together.
    Feel free to use the training ideas included here, which involve the four modules or stations below, with just some ideas on content.
    Gear Check and Review— Have jumpers inspect their rigs with a rigger. Check closing loops and flaps, pilot chute snugness and condition, velcro, three-ring condition, RSL routing, AAD compliance with battery and factory check, etc.
    Skydiving Emergency Review and Drills— Review all types of problems, reinforce altitude awareness, discuss disorientation, practice in a suspended harness.
    Canopy Flight and Landing Patterns—Use aerial photos to show acceptable and unacceptable outs, review hazards, establish or review landing patterns, and discuss canopy handling toward preventing low-turn accidents.
    Aircraft Procedures and Emergencies—Review exit order and loading procedures, seat belt and weight and balance concerns, spotting procedures, visibility minimums and cloud clearances, air traffic control requirements, and aircraft emergency scenarios.
  4. Don't forget the PR.
    Give recognition to those who turn out and those who teach. Remember that many local news organizations may want to provide news coverage. Take pictures and send them with a brief write-up to Parachutist. And consider that the skydivers who don't participate may need more of your staff's attention when the season kicks in.

Like skydiving, Safety Day is also about fun. It certainly won't be hard to encourage jumpers to get together at the end of the day's activities for some mid-winter socializing. Make sure to include that in your Safety Day plan, too!

Nominate A Chesley H. Judy Safety Award Recipient

Be sure to nominate a recipient for the Chesley H. Judy Safety Award as part of your Safety Day activities. Each year, the S&TA and drop zone owner selects a worthy recipient who, in the previous year through example, deed, training, or innovation, has promoted safety in a substantive way. USPA will provide at no charge a certificate suitable for framing with the name of the recipient and name of the drop zone to be presented on Safety Day. Send the name of the recipient, the name of the drop zone, and a mailing address for the certificate, no later than February 24 to


The Spirit of Giving

Published on Tuesday, May 1, 2018

The Spirit of Giving

by Ed Scott

This month’s piece is about a skydiver, but beyond that it is not about skydiving. You should keep reading anyway.

Jeff Bramstedt, 47, spent 13 years as a U.S. Navy SEAL and was a member of the Navy Parachute Team. After leaving the military, he worked in the film industry as a stunt performer (and still does occasionally). He performed demo jumps, pitched drogues as a tandem instructor and formed a ministry—Life of Valor. In early 2016, he and two partners bought Skydive San Diego in Jamul, California. Along the way, he and his wife were raising three children. Life was good.

In August 2017, Bramstedt was attending the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale Swoop Freestyle World Championships in Denmark when his wife, Robin, texted him about a friend whose medical condition was getting dire. Melinda Ray was a 35-year-old wife and mother of three who was suffering from a disease that was quickly destroying her liver. She didn’t score high on the transplant list to qualify for a liver from a deceased donor; she had to find a living donor. She was desperate. She had months, maybe weeks, and pleaded on Facebook for a liver donor. Without hesitation, Jeff said he’d do it.

The body’s skin and liver are the only two organs that can quickly regenerate, so you can lose up to two-thirds of your liver and it will grow back. But so much has to go right for a successful transplant, and so much can go wrong. In hindsight, you might think this match was preordained. Both Jeff and Melinda do. Jeff knew from the get-go that blood type wouldn’t be an issue. He’s a universal donor. But because he was adopted, he didn’t know his genetic history. Predisposition for diabetes, for instance, would be disqualifying. So, in the first of four trips (at his own expense) to UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital, he began the most thorough physical exam he’d ever endured. As he passed screening after screening, doctors found one surprise: His liver was freakishly large, nearly one-quarter larger than most. That was good. They would need to take only 30 percent of his liver, not the usual 60 percent.

Every year about 14,000 people in the U.S. need a liver, and only about 8,000 receive a donation. All but 350 donations come from deceased people who signed up as organ donors. Living donors are rare and special. Screening is rigorous and often disqualifying. And the transplant is risky: According to Dr. Elizabeth Pomfret, UCHealth’s chief of transplant surgery, the surgery is even more significant than that for a kidney donation, which is severe.

Doctors performed the two 10-hour surgeries on December 4 at UCHealth. Four months later, both families were back to their normal lives. The story got out and Jeff underwent a round of publicity with the likes of “ABC World News,” “Good Morning, America” and People magazine. He submitted to the recognition only because the publicity could help others consider being an organ donor.

These two families are in contact nearly every day, and Melinda has committed to making a tandem jump with Jeff. “I feel I have a little sister now. We literally share the same DNA,” Jeff told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He also has a message for skydivers: “The majority of living donors are those who’ve served in the military, law enforcement or as firefighters. I figure skydivers are made of the same stuff. If you’re thinking about it, call me.”

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Author: Ed Scott

Categories: Homepage, Gearing Up

Tags: May 2018

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