Overconfidence


Every year for more than a decade, The Parachutist, which is the official publication of the United States Parachute Association, has published an article called their "fatality summary." In the article a writer analyzes the factors contributing to parachuting deaths in the previous year.

Parachutists are classified first as students, then after twenty jumps they receive their A license. After fifty jumps, they receive their B license. After one hundred jumps their C license. After two hundred jumps, their D license.

In the 1993 fatality summary Paul Sitter points to an alarming statistic. Fifty-nine percent of all parachuting fatalities were suffered by elite jumpers, those with a D license. A graph accompanying the article shows a dramatic upward spike for fatalities among those with two hundred to one thousand jumps. The line on the graph falls again for those with more than one thousand jumps.

The lesson is clear. Just because a person is mature doesn't mean he or she is invulnerable. Is it possible that some parachutists with between two hundred and one thousand jumps got overconfident?

Author unknown. If anyone has a proprietary interest in this story please authenticate and I will be happy to credit, or remove, as the circumstances dictate.

Thanks to Keith Smith The Christian and Bible Resource Center

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