A woman jumped to her death while parachuting at the Lodi Parachute Center on April 17th, 2021. This brings up the total amount of recorded deaths for the facility to 22. According to witnesses, her parachute became tangled and she could not recover it in time.
“What was reported to us from someone who witnessed the [incident]… was that the chute failed to fully open as she was coming down and it was heavily tangled around her,” the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office said.
According to reports, the woman was “very experienced,” so her having issues was odd. Unfortunately due to regulations, the FAA can only inspect the parachute rigging and not the circumstances around it. “Federal Aviation Administration investigations of skydiving events are limited to inspecting the parachute rigging. The FAA does not investigate to determine the cause of the event,” the FAA said in a statement.
The Lodi Parachute Center has come under fire multiple times for deaths during their services. Recently they had to pay up over $40 million to a family who’s son was killed. The boy, Tyler Turner, had a 4.3 grade average, had just graduated high school and was there for a friends birthday party. His mother who was with him on the ground heard the instructor say that they did not have to complete the safety video before they boarded the plane. This occurred in 2016, and the center has had now a total of 22 deaths since 1981.
Part of the deadly side of this facility stems from it’s location– directly hugging the California 99 Highway. This has caused some jumpers to land in precarious circumstances including semi trucks, and the side of buildings nearby (seriously- look it up).
People are hoping that with the current incident compounded with the sum of money owed to the Turner family that the facility will shut down for good. Or be handed over to a capable owner so that these tragic events don’t happen anymore.