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Old 13th December 2018, 05:23 PM   #1
arthwollipot
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Study on parachute use

Here's a newly-published study from the British Medical Journal. Well worth the read.

Parachute use to prevent death and major trauma when jumping from aircraft: randomized controlled trial
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Old 13th December 2018, 05:32 PM   #2
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Can you win an Ig Nobel if you're intentionally trying for it?

ETA: Be sure to scroll down to the photo. Cool airplane!
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Old 13th December 2018, 05:37 PM   #3
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I know this version is making a different point, but there was an interesting review of the original parachute article from 2003 here.
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Old 13th December 2018, 05:41 PM   #4
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That.. was... awesome. Great science, or rather, meta-science.

“First and most importantly, our findings might not be generalizable to the use of parachutes in aircraft traveling at a higher altitude or velocity.”
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Old 13th December 2018, 06:03 PM   #5
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Hmmm.. better Ignoble study..... compare needless skydiver deaths to numbers of passengers who actaully used parachutes in an emergency.... results: "People who wear parachutes are many times more likely to die than other passengers". Might as well not have a parachute.

Because that seems to be the logic of the gun statistic: "People who live in a house with a gun in it are a bazillioon more times likely to die of gun shot wound".... Personally, I blame houses.
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Old 13th December 2018, 09:54 PM   #6
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That was great.
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Old 13th December 2018, 11:43 PM   #7
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Old 14th December 2018, 12:53 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Can you win an Ig Nobel if you're intentionally trying for it?

ETA: Be sure to scroll down to the photo. Cool airplane!

Steerman?
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Old 14th December 2018, 03:57 PM   #9
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First law of parachute use; remember to open it, otherwise you may be in trouble. Second rule....... well, if you don't follow the first rule, any other rules are irrelevant.
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Old 14th December 2018, 04:15 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
First law of parachute use; remember to open it, otherwise you may be in trouble. Second rule....... well, if you don't follow the first rule, any other rules are irrelevant.
If in doubt, put it out.
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Old 14th December 2018, 04:29 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Checks date: Nope, not April 1st.
The BMJ does a quasi-satirical one every Christmas.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:10 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
First law of parachute use; remember to open it, otherwise you may be in trouble. Second rule....... well, if you don't follow the first rule, any other rules are irrelevant.


I would have thought the first law was "remember to put it on before jumping". Can't open what you don't have.
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Old 15th December 2018, 06:16 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
First law of parachute use; remember to open it, otherwise you may be in trouble. Second rule....... well, if you don't follow the first rule, any other rules are irrelevant.
My mother gave me one as a present yesterday. She told me not to open it before Xmas.
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Old 15th December 2018, 07:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by EHocking View Post
My mother gave me one as a present yesterday. She told me not to open it before Xmas.
Thats only a quandry if you are going skydiving in the next week or so.
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Old 15th December 2018, 08:04 PM   #15
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A funny one. It reminds me of a quotation attributed to Benny Hill (source not remembered): Just because nobody complains doesn't mean all parachutes are perfect.
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Old 15th December 2018, 09:31 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Hungry81 View Post
Thats only a quandry if you are going skydiving in the next week or so.
. . . If you don’t hear from me on Monday . . .
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Last edited by EHocking; 15th December 2018 at 10:09 PM. Reason: Slepping
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Old 17th December 2018, 02:26 AM   #17
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There is science. And then there is the documentation of science.

Both can be beautiful. Often times without each other.
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Old 17th December 2018, 03:58 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Hungry81 View Post
Thats only a quandry if you are going skydiving in the next week or so.
“If at first you don’t succeed, well, maybe skydiving’s not for you.”
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Old 20th December 2018, 07:07 AM   #19
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Old 20th December 2018, 08:07 AM   #20
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Blimey.
And his family looked on, presumably thinking this was a reasonable idea??
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Old 20th December 2018, 08:27 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
Blimey.
And his family looked on, presumably thinking this was a reasonable idea??
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
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Old 20th December 2018, 08:35 AM   #22
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They should get together with Virgin Galatic to help put an upper limit on their results.
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Old 20th December 2018, 08:47 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Hellbound View Post
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
Well yes.
In this case he fell right in front of them, it sounds like.
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Old 21st December 2018, 10:18 AM   #24
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Favorite thing said by the Black Hats at jump school: If your main chute fails you have the rest of your life to pull the reserve.
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Old 21st December 2018, 02:35 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Doubt View Post
Favorite thing said by the Black Hats at jump school: If your main chute fails you have the rest of your life to pull the reserve.
I jumped with a guy who had a streamer plus tangled reserve in his previous jump from 7200' a couple months prior.
Good sign, or bad?
Not sure... but my main was a real slooooow opener.
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Old 21st December 2018, 03:01 PM   #26
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Can't see the point in jumping out of planes when such things as runways exist.
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Old 23rd December 2018, 03:29 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
Can't see the point in jumping out of planes when such things as runways exist.
Originally, it was just to get troops into places where runways didn't exist. Then, I guess, a few crazy people decided that it was fun and continued to do it.
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Old 25th December 2018, 02:39 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Originally, it was just to get troops into places where runways didn't exist. Then, I guess, a few crazy people decided that it was fun and continued to do it.
Erm... Sorry arthwollipot, but it really wasn't.

The parachute was around for a long time before it was used to deploy soldiers.

That's not even the first military use.

The history of parachutes is quite interesting, and much older than you might think.

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Old 25th December 2018, 05:26 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
Can't see the point in jumping out of planes when such things as runways exist.
Pushing the limits of human experience seems like an obvious point to me.

Airplanes aren't made to land on runways. They're made to expand the realm of human achievement.

Your problem isn't the runways. Your problem is the prospect of approaching your limit of human achievement.
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Old 26th December 2018, 03:06 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by jonesdave116 View Post
Can't see the point in jumping out of planes when such things as runways exist.
A colleague of mine who was a pilot met a woman who was a keen parachutist and asked her, "Why would anyone jump out of a perfectly good airplane?" Her reply was, "Show me a perfectly good airplane, and I won't jump out of it." As they ended up married to each other, I suspect they came to respect each other's point of view.

Dave
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Old 26th December 2018, 06:29 AM   #31
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Q: Why would anyone jump out of a plane?

A: To join the Caterpillar Club:

Originally Posted by Wikipedia
The Caterpillar Club is an informal association of people who have successfully used a parachute to bail out of a disabled aircraft....anybody who has saved their life by using a parachute after bailing out of a disabled aircraft is eligible. The requirement that the aircraft is disabled naturally excludes parachuting enthusiasts in the normal course of a recreational jump, or those involved in military training jumps.
The club is highly selective, but admitted the late George H W Bush.
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Old 26th December 2018, 09:18 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
A colleague of mine who was a pilot met a woman who was a keen parachutist and asked her, "Why would anyone jump out of a perfectly good airplane?" Her reply was, "Show me a perfectly good airplane, and I won't jump out of it." As they ended up married to each other, I suspect they came to respect each other's point of view.

Dave
True story: my first skydive was out of a little modified high-wing that the pilot had trouble starting and looked like a rusty lawnmower. We joked later that we were glad to be getting out early because we doubted it would land in one piece.

For those who never did this, climbing out on the strut, and pushing off was a ton of fun and worth the price of admission in spades. The actual parachuting down was a little dull.
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Old 28th December 2018, 10:32 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by novaphile View Post
Erm... Sorry arthwollipot, but it really wasn't.

The parachute was around for a long time before it was used to deploy soldiers.

That's not even the first military use.

The history of parachutes is quite interesting, and much older than you might think.

ParachuteWP
Reading that wiki article it seems like it was originally designed just as a curiosity, to see if it could be done. The first real practical use was to balloons that were potentially under fire from enemy aircraft, and later from damaged aircraft.

Quote:
The first military use of the parachute was by artillery observers on tethered observation balloons in World War I. These were tempting targets for enemy fighter aircraft, though difficult to destroy, due to their heavy anti-aircraft defenses. Because it was difficult to escape from them, and dangerous when on fire due to their hydrogen inflation, observers would abandon them and descend by parachute as soon as enemy aircraft were seen.
People had demonstrated their effectiveness prior to this, but that seems to be the first practical use.

The "jumping from a balloon" use was developed much earlier than this, but it's not clear from the wiki article whether it was actually used much prior to WWI, it says only:
Quote:
Also in 1785, Jean-Pierre Blanchard demonstrated it as a means of safely disembarking from a hot-air balloon. While Blanchard's first parachute demonstrations were conducted with a dog as the passenger, he later claimed to have had the opportunity to try it himself in 1793 when his hot air balloon ruptured and he used a parachute to descend (this event was not witnessed by others).
There's no discussion of whether or not this became a common precaution for balloonists in the intervening century. If that were the case I'd say that was the first real practical use.
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Old 30th December 2018, 08:37 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Originally, it was just to get troops into places where runways didn't exist. Then, I guess, a few crazy people decided that it was fun and continued to do it.
The Russians first thought up military parachuting (or at least the idea of air dropping troops) in the 1930s. One of their first ideas was to roll the guys up in thick bundles of straw and canvas and kick them out the back of the aeroplane like someone doing an emergency airdrop of dining room carpets.
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Old 30th December 2018, 04:35 PM   #35
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No-one ever complains about faulty parachutes.
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Old 31st December 2018, 11:37 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by BillC View Post
No-one ever complains about faulty parachutes.
Well, maybe they do for a couple of seconds.......
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Old 31st December 2018, 12:02 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
The BMJ does a quasi-satirical one every Christmas.
Most of the medical journals do.

This article is a republication of a December issue joke article in the CMAJ from the 90s.
I can't find a reference.

There is a skeptical angle on this. I used it as an example of differential evidence types in medicine. Our decision to use parachutes is akin to science based medicine, but not akin to evidence based medicine. Sometimes you don't need an RCT to know a procedure is valid.
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Old 1st January 2019, 09:26 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by Thermal View Post
True story: my first skydive was out of a little modified high-wing that the pilot had trouble starting and looked like a rusty lawnmower. We joked later that we were glad to be getting out early because we doubted it would land in one piece.

For those who never did this, climbing out on the strut, and pushing off was a ton of fun and worth the price of admission in spades. The actual parachuting down was a little dull.
My ex and I did a jump on our second anniversary.

Single-prop plane stripped down for weight that looked really unfit for flight. As were rumbling down the tarmac (think of a 77 Ford LTD on a bumpy road) one of the instructors asks my wife if she’s feeling nervous.

“Not at all, because I am not landing in this piece of crap.”
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