Mobile phones and us are almost inseparable these days. I’ve seen phone bonded AFF students looking like they were having a separation anxiety crisis when their beloved gadget had to be away from their touch. Buuut…. My recommendation is, take your phone with you whenever you skydive.
Why? It’s definitely not for that last selfie at the 2 min. call. The main reason is to preserve the communication ability if you happen to land off the drop zone. Bad spotting, malfunction or brain farting, whatever led you to land away from home, that’s how you let us know you’re OK! We also want your coordinates so we can dispatch the rescue division to bring you home quickly. Also, if you do happen to damage your landing gears and need help getting home, we definitely want to know that ASAP so we can come to help you.
If you’re doing any sort of moving jump, tracking, angle or wing suiting, off landings are more likely to happen. So phones are even more recommended for these particular jumps.
If you land out and you’re fine, let manifest know! If you’re badly injured, call 911 and then us. If you’re ok or have a mild injury and you want to be rescued very quickly, send us a screenshot from your phone’s map app.
KEEP THAT PHONE SECURE THROUGHOUT YOUR ENTIRE SKYDIVE! Secured means zippered, preferably on an inside pocket of your jump suit. And KEEP IT THERE! UNTIL AFTER YOU LAND!!! Situational awareness, air traffic management and canopy safety is our NUMBER ONE PRIORITY until we have safely landed; you can take enough selfies during pre-jump and post-landing. In air selfies require a hand cam glove, and probably a lot more experience than you had when you first considered doing it.
Be aware of the implications for you, for the DZ and skydiving reputation in general if that phone falls on someone’s house, on a car at the freeway, or even worse, on some child’s head.
If you do not have a proper jump outfit or any sort of device that can really secure that phone, suck it up and leave it on the ground. And that zipper hand pocket from your Puma hoodie does not count as a safe compartment, I’ve seen phones falling out of those!!!
Keep your phone safely stowed until the plane reaches 1,500 feet, and put it back with enough time to do a good self check, revisit your dive flow and be ready to do a proper spotting before jumping. Remember that having your phone while jumping creates one extra check point, it will take some time until it becomes fully integrated into your routine. Make sure you consider it.
Obs. If you do not have your A License yet, make sure you talk to your instructor before taking any extra device up for a ride.