Chute Failure Sends Skydiver Crashing Into Roof of California Home

NTD Newsroom
By NTD Newsroom
January 23, 2018US News
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Chute Failure Sends Skydiver Crashing Into Roof of California Home
Skydivers unrelated to article.(VideoElephant/Screenshot)

A skydiver whose main chute failed to open crashed with lethal force into the roof of a home in Perris, California, on Jan. 22.

Christina Blanco, who lives in the house in the 200 block of Caldera Street in Perris, was home when it happened, around 3 p.m. She described a sound like a load of plywood being dropped on the floor.

Blanco said the worst part of the ordeal was waiting for word on the skydiver’s condition.

“I was in complete shock,” she told KABC-TV. “I was like, no, this can’t be happening. … I hope he’s okay, is he still alive.

“And then it took so long for us to find out if he was OK or not, just waiting. My heart just dropped when they were like, no, he’s not OK,” she said.    

The unidentified skydiver was seen falling, apparently unconscious, as his emergency chute did open shortly before the fatal impact.

Whatever caused his emergency parachute to deploy, it happened too late to save the unfortunate adventurer.   

“He hit the roof really hard,” eyewitness Ali Muhassen, told KABC. “I don’t think that chute did anything to break his fall.”

Muhassen said the skydiver’s head was hanging and his arms were flapping “like free-falling.”

“Yeah he was unconscious, totally,” Muhassen told KABC.

Muhassen said he thought he saw the man move slightly a few times after the impact.

“I was yelling at him, trying to get his attention, keep awake or something,” Muhassen said. “He moved his neck one time, another time he moved his arm—just very faint movements. I think he was too badly hurt.”

Rescue officials remove the body from the roof. (KABC TV screenshot)
Rescue officials remove the body from the roof. (KABC TV screenshot)

The Riverside County Fire Department found the man lying next to his partially unfurled emergency chute. His main parachute was still in its backpack. They pronounced him dead within half an hour, KTLA reported.

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department also responded, and is investigating the incident.

Some of the roof tile was crushed by the impact but the skydiver did not penetrate. (KABC TV screenshot)
Some of the roof tiles were crushed by the impact but the skydiver did not penetrate. (KABC TV screenshot)

Likely the was skydiving under the auspices of Skydive Perris, located at Perris Valley Airport, less than two miles from the house where he landed. Skydive Perris had no comment for the press.

According to the Riverside Press-Enterprise, there have been at least 20 deaths associated with the facility since 2000.

 

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