A 35-year-old skydiver survived a 13,000-foot fall in New Zealand after the parachute failed him, according to a report from The Telegraph.
The skydiver, Liam Dunne, was seriously injured after his main parachute failed and the reserve chute only partially worked. He was airlifted to Nelson Hospital and was subsequently admitted to the Christchurch Hospital, which had more appropriate resources to address serious injuries.
Dunne, described as an experienced skydiver with over 1,000 jumps, was practicing a solo jump with a local company, Skydive Abel Tasman. The incident took place during the Good Vibes festival in the Motueka airfield on the southern island of the archipelago.
Stuart Bean, the skydive company's owner, said:
"He activated his main parachute at about 4,000 feet, stayed with his main parachute for a short period of time, and developed a steering problem, so he didn't have directional control. He elected to release the main parachute and open his reserve parachute and, for reasons that we don't know at this stage, had a hard landing."
Although the man could not fully deploy his reserve parachute, according to authorities, it automatically opened when he was only 750 feet above ground.
Georgie and Kim Eschweiler, witnesses to the accident, watched from the ground as the man's main parachute floated away from him during the jump. Mr. Eschweiler told the news website of Fairfax: "He came down fast and hit the ground full blast."
Barbara Dunn, a spokeswoman for the Tasmania Police District, said the man landed heavily despite the parachute slowing the last leg of his fall. He bounced against the ground several times before stopping.
Gary Tobin, the St John Ambulance Service, said the skydiver seemed to suffer internal injuries to the chest and abdomen. They also evaluated the possibility of him suffering from spinal compression fractures.
Tobin said the man felt a huge pain after landing and remained conscious throughout the time he was assisted.
The skydiver survived the 13,000-foot fall back in August of last year and he has made a full recovery since the incident.