Object Type: Earth
Location: Yellow Ocean, Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
COD: Cliff Strike
Clothes / Suit: Normal Clothes
This report comes from a jumper who was with Herbert.
Herbert was an experienced skydiver with 1000+ jumps and a BASE beginner.
We stayed in Lauterbrunnen for some days and this was Herbert's 19th BASE jump and the first jump that day. We chose the Yellow Ocean exit because he still had slightly unstable exits and Yellow Ocean is the best spot to improve the basic skills. When he jumped he went a bit head down but was able to stabilize his position after 3 or 4 seconds. Then he made an obviously unintentional move like a beginning barrel roll to his right hand side but Im not able to say why. Since he fell out of my sight I only could hear but not see the opening.
Eye witnesses from the Air Glacier Heli base told me later he opened very low and close to the wall and had two cliff strikes immediately after opening.
They didnt see any action under the canopy so he must have been knocked unconscious by the first strike. When I found him he was still alive but died in the Interlaken hospital from the severe head injuries and loss of blood.
He had not been wearing a helmet and the medic said with a helmet he might have survived but maybe with brain damages, this is mere speculation. We installed a memorial at the exit also as a reminder to make us think about what we're doing prior to jump.
BASE Fatality List
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