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‘Error of judgement’ during parachute landing led to Peterborough skydiving accident

By Peter Gudde

A Magpas Helimedix air ambulance, like the one pictured, was called to the scene.
A Magpas Helimedix air ambulance, like the one pictured, was called to the scene.

Monday, 10am: A Peterborough man airlifted to hospital after a skydiving accident made an “error of judgement” while landing, the British Parachute Association has confirmed.

Air and land ambulances were called to Sibson Airfield near Peterborough just after midday on Saturday after the man, in his 30s, was hurt during a jump.

He was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge by a Magpas air ambulance crew in a serious but stable condition. He suffered serious injuries to his head, chest, back, arms and legs.

Speaking today (Monday) British Parachute Association chief operating officer Tony Butler said the accident was being investigated.

“It was a very experienced parachutist,” he said. “It looks like he made an error of judgement when landing and went down a bit too hard.”

Mr Butler said although this kind of incident was uncommon, experienced skydivers still occasionally made mistakes.

“There are about a quarter of a million parachute descents made in the UK every year. Some of them jump with high-performance parachutes with landing speeds of about 40mph. If they do have a landing accident it can hurt.”

Mr Butler said he did not know the injured man’s current condition.

A Magpas spokesman said the Helimedix anaesthetised the man when they arrived at the scene on Saturday afternoon, providing him with specialist trauma care while working alongside an East of England Ambulance Service paramedic crew.

Another man, Patrick Sandeman, died at the same site in 2012 when two parachutes became entangled during a jump.


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