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Skydiving Instructor Killed in 'Swooping' Stunt Gone Wrong

SkydivingAir Transportation DisastersTransportation DisastersKTLAFederal Aviation AdministrationLos Angeles Times

PERRIS, Calif. (KTLA) -- A skydiver killed during a jump in Perris died after miscalculated a risky maneuver referred to as 'swooping.'

Paramedics and firefighters responded about 2 p.m. to the Perris Valley Skydiving field after friends tried and failed to resuscitate the man, Riverside Sheriff's Department officials said.

Coroner's officials have identified the man as 32-year-old Canadian Michael Ungar, who worked as a skydiving instructor along California's Central Coast.

Witnesses said Ungar's parachute did open, but he hit the ground at a high rate of speed.

Ungar was performing a parachuting trick that requires deploying the parachute at the start of the jump and then building up speed as he descends from the plane, according to Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld, the manager of the Perris Valley Skydiving Center.

The goal is to level off a few feet off the ground.

But Ungar is believed to have come in at a bad angle, eventually slamming into the ground.

"He's a very experienced guy who seems to have misjudged it, and it had severe consequences" said Brodsky-Chenfeld.

Ungar had made over 2,000 jumps before Tuesday's accident and had successfully performed the 'swooping' maneuver several times earlier that day, Brodsky-Chenfeld said.

The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the death.

Ungar was the fifth person to die this year at the Perris Valley Skydiving field.

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