Fri, Dec 22, 2006
Skydiver Survives 15,000-Foot Freefall
more than journalistic hyberbole to say a skydiving instructor in
New Zealand is lucky to be alive, after his main and reserve
'chutes failed during a 15,000-foot dive last week.
MSNBC reports Michael Holmes, 25, landed in a dense blackberry
bush less than 300 feet from a parking lot after his main parachute
apparently became tangled.
"When the second parachute didn’t open, I realized it was
all over," Holmes told The Times of London from his hospital bed.
"I was going to die. You don’t have much time to say
"The next thing I saw were friends, firemen, ambulances and
The accident occurred near Lake Taupo, the largest lake in New
Zealand. Holmes suffered a punctured lung and a broken ankle in the
The entire fall -- and the landing -- was captured by a
helmet-mounted video camera Holmes was wearing to tape a group of
skydivers. Police and the New Zealand Parachute Industry
Association will investigate the incident.
Meanwhile, Taupo Tandem Skydiving manager Hamish Funnell told
the Daily Telegraph Holmes was in good spirits at the hospital...
"cracking jokes and hassling the nurses."
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