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Free Content The Advanced Tactical Parachute System (T-11): Injuries During Basic Military Parachute Training

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Knapik JJ, Graham B, Steelman R, Colliver K, Jones BH. The Advanced Tactical Parachute System (T-11): injuries during basic military parachute training. Aviat Space Environ Med 2011; 82:935–40.

Background: Since the 1950s, the standard U.S. military troop parachute system has been the T-10. The T-10 is currently being replaced by the newer T-11 system. Purpose: This investigation compared injury incidence between the T-10 and T-11 military parachute systems. Methods: Participants were students in basic parachute training at the U.S. Army Airborne School (USAAS). Students performed their first parachute jumps with the T-11 and subsequent jumps with the T-10. Injury data were collected from routine reports produced by the USAAS. Combat loaded jumps and night jumps were excluded from the analysis since these were only conducted with the T-10. Results: There were a total of 76 injuries in 30,755 jumps for an overall cumulative injury incidence of 2.5/1000 jumps. With the T-10 parachute, there were 61 injuries in 21,404 jumps for a cumulative injury incidence of 2.9/1000 jumps; with the T-11 parachute there were 15 injuries in 9351 jumps for a cumulative injury incidence of 1.6/1000 jumps [risk ratio (T10/T11) = 1.78, 95% confidence interval = 1.01–3.12, P = 0.04]. Discussion: Limitations to this analysis included the fact that the T-11 was only used on the first jumps among students who had likely never previously performed a parachute jump and that aircraft exit procedures differed very slightly for the two parachutes. Nonetheless, the data suggest that injury incidence is lower with the T-11 parachute than with the T-10 parachute when airborne training operations are conducted during the day without combat loads.

Keywords: T-10 parachute; entanglements; parachute ankle brace; wind speed

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: October 1, 2011

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