A skydiver fell 9,000 feet after his parachute became tangled in a friend’s during a difficult maneuver Sunday. But, in a miraculous turn of events, the man survived the fall.
Victor Bryie, of Florida, was rushed to a local hospital in the United Kingdom. Though his injuries were serious, he is reported to be in stable condition. According to The Ledger, the 27-year-old suffered multiple broken bones and a head injury in the fall.
The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said that Bryie and another skydiver, Shaun Phillips, of the U.K., were near the Lake Wales Municipal Airport Sunday afternoon when they jumped from 14,000 feet and their parachute lines tangled. After Phillips’ ankle got caught in Bryie’s line, the two skydivers became ensnared in each other’s chutes.
Twisting in the air, Phillips’ foot broke free, and he was able to open his parachute while he was still about 3,000 feet up. Bryie, on the other hand, remained tangled in his own lines and plummeted to the ground with a partially open parachute.
According to The Orlando Sentinel, the pair were trying to perform a maneuver reserved for experienced skydivers which involves one diver holding the canopy of another’s parachute. This so-called Canopy Relative Work maneuver can link up many divers at once.
The recent accident demonstrates that even the most experienced skydivers can experience a mid-air mishap that causes them to lose control. In October, veteran skydiver Kenneth Ryan Bernek tried a risky maneuver and fell out of control, colliding with a bystander on the ground.