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9/25/2011 9:22 PM
 

As a new skydiver with only 47 jumps, there is one thing I have noticed while under canopy that bugs me. I find it extremely difficult to keep track of canopies and keep an eye on who's below me. One second you see them, the next they blend in with everything underneath you. Wouldn't it be nice to see other skydivers below you without having to frantically search the sky? The other day I was thinking it would be awesome to have some sort of light weight highly reflective material on the tops of canopies in recognizable patterns. Simply put, reflectors for people above you. I do not know if anyone has ever thought of something like this before or if it already exists. All I know is that if I had the option to make my canopy blatantly, or even obnoxiously visible to anyone who may be a threat to my safety, I would be on it like white on rice in a glass of milk on a paper plate in a snowstorm. The cost to benefit ratio of its potential seems almost silly. Cosmetically, the only people who see the top of your canopy can't even see it sometimes so you might as well slap some lifesaving material up there. This is just a thought... perhaps I am missing something, but I had to throw it out there. 

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11/30/2011 8:45 PM
 

Exactly opposite to what Mark said on the last show (24 minutes in), why can’t everybody wear strobes? If it will save lives then why not make it standard on all helmets (or risers or riser covers or foot wear or jump suit or whatever) to have some type of strobe. I myself have, after keeping my head on a swivel, have found myself being surprised by other canopies while approaching the pattern, and these are not canopies that just appeared out of the blue (which sometimes it can occur by people spiraling down), these are canopies that had been there but I just missed them on the look around.

I personally think that the canopies below or on top of you aren’t so much of a problem compared to than the ones that are on your same level, the ones that you can fail to notice that are able to be on a collision course to you. I don’t care as much if there’s a canopy 300 ft below or above me near the pattern (I still take note though) cause I know I’m not going to be spiraling down below 1500-2000 ft, the canopies I fear are the ones that are behind or beside me around the same altitude I am, people need to have something grab their attention if canopies are near them.

I don’t have many jumps (85) but like I said, I do my best to keep my head on a swivel but there are many times that I take a quick look around and don’t see any hazards and until the second or third time I take a look is when I identify a hazard and mostly because of canopies blending in with the surroundings, I know a strobe would have made that hazard clear right from the first look. Given the amount of canopy collisions we’ve had I bet at least 1 life could have been spared with the use of strobes.

Tell me what you think; am I crazy wanting to make everyone wear a strobe light? Or are there skydivers out there that agree?

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