Official: No sign of why chute did not deploy in Skydive City fatality

By Jason Lanning , Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, November 14, 2017, 5:07 PM EST

The man who fell to his death Monday in Zephyrhills was an experienced skydiver, according to officials at Skydive City. 

  • Group of 10 experienced divers went up
  • Still no sign of why parachute did not open
  • FAA will also inspect equipment

On Nov. 14 Zephyrhills Police identified the skydiver as 36-year-old Kurt A. Tracy. Apparently, Tracy's parachute didn't deploy during the jump.  

According to the Skydive City's president, David "T.K." Hayes, a group of 10 experienced skydivers went up Monday afternoon for a fun skydive more than 13,000 feet in the air.

"The initial gear inspection seems to indicate that there’s nothing wrong with the equipment at this point," Hayes said.

Hayes said no one in the group noticed that one of their number was missing until they had all landed and gone back inside the facility to talk about the dive.

Hayes also said he's watched the video from today's jump and saw no indication that anything was wrong.

Deputies recovered Tracy's body in a wooded, swampy area Monday evening.

"I kind of liken it to, you know, you drive your car down the road and you spill a coffee in your car, and you’re down cleaning up the coffee and you go off the road," Hayes said. "It’s often a distraction or a series of distractions. He may have had a distraction that led to another problem to another."

"It could’ve been as simple as his chest strap flapping in his face and he’s trying to deal with the chest strap and loose track of altitude," Hayes said.

Hayes went on to say that they've inspected Tracy's gear and found no indication of why it the chute would not deploy. 

The FAA will also inspect the equipment as part of their investigation.