Two skydivers killed in northern Russia

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 10, 2013 08:10 hrs

Moscow, Jan 10 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Two experienced skydivers in northern Russia have fallen to their deaths after their parachutes failed to open, investigators said.

The tragedy befell the thrill-seekers, one man in his 40s and the other in his 50s, in a jump Tuesday from 1,400 metres, officials in the Komi Republic said in a website statement.

"The parachutes did not open, and as a result they crashed into the ground," the statement said.

The skydivers were jumping in the extreme cold at an airbase near the town of Syktyvkar, where it was minus 21 degrees Celsius at ground level at the time.

"The investigation is looking at several versions of the event, including the possibility that parachutes were opened too late by the skydivers," the statement said.

"The men had a lot of skydiving experience... including in the correct packing of parachutes," the statement said.

Their names were not released.

In October, an experienced skydiver died after her parachute detached in a tragic accident in southern Russia.

The 45-year-old woman hit the ground at terminal velocity after a backpack malfunction during a training jump near the city of Krasnodar.

A week prior to that, former world champion Irina Sinitsyna was killed after colliding with another diver in midair during a jump in Perris Valley, California.

Sinitsyna got entangled in the parachute straps and was unable to open her reserve chute.

--IANS/RIA Novosti


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