Southern Utah News Articles
Top Stories for September 12, 2019
Skydiving accident results in a death
On September 8, 2019 at approximately 9:55 a.m., deputies were called to the area of the Grand Canyon National Park Airport for a report of a skydiving accident in which two males had been injured.
Upon arrival, deputies confirmed two males who had been skydiving in tandem had been injured. One person appeared to have suffered a broken leg and was transported to Flagstaff Medical Center. The other person was unconscious, and CPR lifesaving efforts were being performed by paramedics on scene. The second person was later pronounced deceased by doctors from Flagstaff Medical Center. The deceased has been identified as Christopher Swales, a 55-year-old male, from the United Kingdom.
Swales had purchased a skydiving package from Paragon Skydive, a company at the Grand Canyon National Park Airport. The skydiving package included a tandem jump with a Paragon Skydiver. The skydive reportedly had been going as planned until they encountered difficulties when approaching the landing area. These difficulties caused the pair to free-fall for an unknown distance and hit the ground in what was described as a “hard landing.”
Investigators are still looking into the details surrounding the accident. Currently, there are no indications that the incident is criminal in nature. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has been notified and also is investigating the incident.