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Army Suspends Use of New Parachute

So the Army just suspended use of its first new parachute in 50 years, the T-11, following the death of a Fort Bragg soldier killed during a training jump with the chute.

The square-shaped T-11 is more than 20-percent larger than the old circular T-10 and is designed to fall slower than the old parachute; something that should dramatically reduce injuries during landings. In the video below, you can hear Army officials tell how their injury rates with the new parachute are down by more than 70-percent in some cases.

However, in the wake of the Fort Bragg death, Army officials have found “potential packing, inspection, quality control and functionality problems” with the T-11 parachute system.

This may have just been a tragic case of inexperience in packing the new chute rather than a design flaw. We’ll see. In the meantime, the T-11 remains grounded until the investigation into the accident is complete.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

SF Team SGT July 14, 2011 at 1:30 pm

"So the Army just suspended use of its first new parachute in 50 years,"

Ummmm no way. The army in the last few years has fielded the SF-10 (I was on the test jumps in 10th SFG(A) when we fielded the chute in the 2000 time frame). I also remember in 1989 jumping the MC-1C for when it was fielded. There are also HALO chutes that have been fielded in the last 20-30 years such as MC-4. Those are all off the top of my head. I'm sure I left one or two off.

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Spc Grunt July 14, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Dying on a training jump would be just…God. Terrible.

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PorkRoll July 14, 2011 at 2:33 pm

Anyone know where these parachutes are manufactured?

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blight July 14, 2011 at 2:45 pm

http://www.spacewar.com/reports/BAE_Receives_Cont…

"BAE Systems has been awarded a $5 million order to produce T-11 Personnel Parachute Systems for the U.S. Army. BAE Systems' T-11 Personnel Parachute System provides optimal safety for paratroopers through an improved harness system and large canopy."

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Mastro July 14, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Why I never go parachuting- I don't want it packed by some dope-smoker making minimum wage.

They may not want the guy most like Beetle Baley to pack the chutes.

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chaos0xomega July 14, 2011 at 6:19 pm

Parachute riggers have one of the most high stress jobs in the military… they have regular inspections where they have to jump using a random parachute that they themselves packed. Have some respect, its a very thankless job.

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dave July 15, 2011 at 5:49 am

I'd have thought that every successful jumper thanks them, every time it opens…

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Matt July 15, 2011 at 7:04 pm

Mastro: I got a feeling they don’t let American service members smoke weed…

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RangerT July 15, 2011 at 12:15 am

Well said - the jumpers death albeit tragic just saved the lives of countless others. Every iteration of chute, HALO or SL, is thoroughly tested before a human straps it on and even then hundreds more jumps before put out to the troops in the Deuce.
Why the guy 2 down from me had a streamer and I didn't is providence unknown - who the hell knows. Glad it wasn't me.
250+jumps with zero malfunctions - HALO & SL.
RLTW
Retired HALO and SL JM

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