Question about the BSRs

This question was submitted via email from Holly, a jumper who has just completed her B license:

If elected would there be a specific BSR that you would like to see adjusted or re-evaluated? If so what BSR or changes to the ISP’s would you like to change? Or are you confident that the current BSR’s and ISP’s are comprehensive as they stand now?

That is a great question, and one that I’ve sat on for a couple of days in my inbox because I’m not sure I have a good answer.

I’ll address the ISP first. I think the ISP as it stands is pretty solid (though I would love to have an experienced skydiver/instructor with a keen editorial eye take a pass through it for language and consistency – the thing really does read like it was written by committee… probably because it was).

What I don’t see is consistent use and application of the ISP across DZs, and in particular Group Member DZs. The question becomes – why? The ISP is designed to accommodate a variety of training methods, so that can’t be it. If I were running a DZ or a DZ’s training program (and I’m not, nor am I an instructor) it would seem to me that my best protection from any potential legal action would be to design my training program around the de facto community standard, even if it were important to me to put my own stamp on it. Because let’s face it – our most likely legal action is going to come from those newest to our community.

As for the BSRs … one potential one that I’d like to keep an eye on is high-performance landing areas. The addition to the group member pledge that requires “group member DZ’s to establish and disseminate landing procedures that will include separation of high speed and normal landings” is a good start on ensuring that the problems that we’ve had in recent years with pattern safety are dealt with at all DZs. Some DZs I’ve been to manage their patterns incredibly well; others not well at all. Said pledge was only added at the end of 2007, so it’s still early, but I’d like to keep a close watch on the impact (or lack) it has on driving behavioral/cultural changes to assess whether the “heavy hand” of a BSR might be needed to encourage compliance.

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