Safety Check | How Healthy is Your DZ’s Safety Culture?
Safety Check | Sep 23, 2022
Safety Check | How Healthy is Your DZ’s Safety Culture?

Ron Bell and Jen Sharp

Photo by Josh Reuck.

Several key factors can shed light on the health of the safety culture at your drop zone. While most locations fall under the general categories of exceptional, marginal or inadequate, a site may be exemplary in some areas but lacking in others. How a drop zone applies USPA recommendations and Basic Safety Requirements and the Federal Aviation Administration's Federal Aviation Regulations can be an excellent gauge of the health of its safety culture. Several other characteristics also factor into a whether a safety culture is strong and healthy.

Use the chart below to score the culture of safety at your drop zone.

Where does your community fit into these safety culture characteristics? Did your drop zone get the max score of 18, or does it need to improve somewhere? Whether you are a DZO or weekend sport jumper, there are steps everyone can take to improve a DZ’s safety culture. Being a good role model is a start, but being proactive and initiating safety discussions can have an even more significant impact. (The good news is that you are already being proactive by sitting down and evaluating your DZ with this chart.) Capitalize on the organization's strengths and focus your actions on improving any deficiencies. You can take satisfaction that you are pushing things in the right direction.

Ron Bell | D-26863
USPA Director of Safety and Training


Jen Sharp | D-17516
Tandem, AFF and Coach Examiner; PRO>/em>

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1 comments on article "Safety Check | How Healthy is Your DZ’s Safety Culture?"

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Jaye Flynn

9/30/2022 5:33 PM

Question/Suggestion: Why not implement a safety rating system for all USPA DZs, similar to how restaurants have health department ratings clearly visible in the drive thru window as well as at the counter inside. This way, jumpers new and old can see how each DZ stacks up regarding safety culture and adherence to BSRs & FAA regs. Additionally, these ratings should posted on for awareness of all skydivers, DZOs and potential tandem students. All this would incentivize DZOs to fill gaps in their safety ratings so they can increase revenue based on their safety rating as well as be featured in Parachutist for same.

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