The danger associated with skydiving has decreased steadily over the last decade, but skydiving is not a danger-free activity. Because you are exiting an aircraft in flight from roughly two miles above the ground and freefalling at speeds of around 120mph to the ground, there is, naturally, some danger involved. As an extreme sport, skydiving contains certain risks, but the majority of these risks have been mitigated by significant technological improvements to equipment and the implementation of advanced training programs.
So, how dangerous is skydiving?
Let's Take A Look At Some Skydiving Statistics
Numbers don’t lie, and the most recent skydiving statistics from 2019 paint a picture of skydiving that is not as dangerous as people imagine.
How likely is it to die from skydiving? According to the United States Parachute Association, in 2019, approximately 3.3 million jumps were completed. Out of these 3.3 million jumps, 15 resulted in a skydiving death. That is one skydiving death per 220,301 jumps.
How many people die a year from tandem skydiving? The safety record for tandem skydiving is even better: there has been only one student fatality per 500,000 tandem jumps over the past decade.
Activities That Are More Dangerous Than Skydiving
Is skydiving high risk? Yes, but you may be surprised how it compares to a few other activities. While skydiving contains some inherent danger, there are plenty of seemingly benign activities that are actually far more dangerous.
Driving Or Riding In A Car
A weekly trip to the grocery store doesn’t cause many to bat an eye, but without a doubt, driving is far more dangerous than skydiving. In 2019, the total number of driving fatalities in the US was 36,096. This averages out to 99 fatalities per day.
A Walk In The Woods in Summer
During the summer months, bees and hornets are increasingly active. This increased activity means an increased rate of stings. Startlingly, each year around 58 people are killed by bee or hornet stings. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, you’re more likely to be killed by a bee sting than you are to die from skydiving.
As a niche sport, data surrounding scuba diving fatalities is difficult to come by. The most recently reported data comes from 2016. According to the Diver alert Network, in 2016, there were a total of 169 deaths involving recreational scuba diving around the world. Occurring within the US, there were 27 total fatalities.
Skydiving Safety Is Our Top Priority
So, how dangerous is skydiving? Because there’s no universal danger scale of 1-10, it’s hard to say exactly. Though, most agree, based on the skydiving incident data, the level of risk associated with skydiving is an acceptable one.