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Jump out of a plane with the California Smokejumpers | KQED News


If the US Forest Service is the military, the smokejumpers are the that special
forces the military I want to be the best. That’s it. You want to be the best, you want that title. Once the horn goes off everybody rushes
to the lockers, Get their gear, they get dressed. Once you got your gear ready, then you’re ready to step in the plane. So we have
one two three four five six seven eight nine ten ten seats on the plane, 10 smokejumpers. Then we have two spotter seats. So you got your one foot on the door you got one hand here, you ready to go. I almost ripped this thing. Some of the guys are really huge and they’re yanking on this thing. You’re just waiting and looking at the
horizon. You wanna look straight in front of ya. And he’ll tell you, he’ll reach back. When he’s like this. Once you know he comes back here you know it’s about to go down, because he’s gonna say “Get ready!” Once he says get ready, slap your hands outside and then he’ll give
you the slap on the shoulder and then you just fly. Once you jump out, everything gets quiet. It lasts about a minute and a half and it’s like the most quietest thing And then you look for your spot
where you’re gonna land. And aim for that spot. You better, you hopefully hit the spot “I’m good.” Once you hit the ground it’s like you don’t get to enjoy the moment. Like, yes I landed, like all right! You know I’m alive! So for two
minutes you need to be a really good parachutist. And for the rest of the time you need to be a really
great firefighter That’s when the real work starts. You want to basically starve the fire of
fuel, and then you start stirring it up and that gets rid of the oxygen. But we don’t have water. We never have water.
We don’t work with water. It doesn’t come with us So it’s all about removing the fuel
and then starting to stir the ashes and mixing it with the dirt You know it’s it’s a job and we’re highly
trained to do it you know so it’s like your job or anybody’s job, I mean. It’s what you do. We don’t think it has
anything other this is what we do. This is what I do But then you know the same time you
know just you get back and you get some
rest and then you’re like man I really wanna do that again you know.

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Comments
  • A skydiver asked, "why the old conical style canopies?  And why static lines?"

    I think when coming down in middle of forest you don't want to be moving horizontally but vertically for a tree landing. Notice the jumpsuit and helmets with face masks which provide protection. Like Army Airborne, the skydiving part is only a means of transportation, the real job is after landing. Rounds may not have soft landings like squares but if you can't handle the landings, you will not be able to fire fighting anyway.

    Interesting there are only nine Calif smokejumpers (they must have huge egos being a few of the best) and they remove the fuel as they don't have water to extinguish the fire.

  • WOMEN CAN DO THE JOB EASY. PLUS THEY AREN'T AS HEAVY AS MEN SO THE LANDING IS LIGHTER. HOW AWESOME EXCEPT FOR THE NASTY SMOKE. THATS THE NEGATIVE LIKE WORKING AROUND A SMOKER ALL DAY. TORTURE.

  • ALUMINUM SEEDING FIRE FIGHTERS DEAL WITH A FOOT OF ALUMINUM WHICH IS VERY FLAMMABLE AND HOT, KILLS 100 MILLION TREES IN OREGON 2015.

  • Awesome video! we're reading about this in my reading class. This is exactly what my students needed to see.

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