schedules and for properly doing the required
The frequency and nature of parachute
inspections depends on the use of the parachute.
Those used regularly for jumping, such as
parachutes assigned to SEAL teams, are inspected
and repacked after each use; these and others are
on a different schedule than those intended for
emergency use. Our discussion focuses on emer-
gency parachutes to emphasize that although
they are rarely used, they may be damaged in
handling or exposed to hazards in their
Emergency parachutes are assigned to oper-
ating units. They may be part of an aircraft
inventory or they maybe assigned to a ready issue
room. To some extent, the frequency of their
inspection depends on the type of aircraft to which
they are assigned. Those assigned to attack or
fighter aircraft are inspected more frequently than
those on the larger patrol, cargo, or other planes
where they are not sat upon or otherwise subjected
to as many hazards.
Major inspections of emergency parachutes
are routine when the parachute is first put into
service, and then later at intervals to coincide with
the time the aircraft is down for major main-
Less extensive inspections that do not involve
unpacking the parachute are daily, preflight,
postflight, and special. These special inspections
are done every 7 days, 10 days, or 14 days,
depending on the type of aircraft. Of course, if
any damage is found or suspected during these
inspections, the assembly is sent to an aviation
intermediate maintenance depot (AIMD) for
thorough inspection, testing, and possible repair.
Several special inspections may also be done.
For instance, after a combat mission the
parachute assembly is inspected for missile
damage from bullets or fragments. After an
emergency use the entire parachute is shipped to
the Naval Weapons Center, China Lake, Cali-
fornia, for a detailed inspection. Other in-
spections may be ordered if defects are suspected
in a group of parachutes or in association with
authorized changes and modifications.
All parachutes are given periodic main-
tenance inspections under the direction and
control of the maintenance control officer.
Maintenance is to be thorough at all times.
No instance of careless treatment or neglect
of parachute equipment is to be allowed to
pass unnoticed. The vital function of this
equipment must be uppermost in the minds of
all personnel concerned.
Parachute maintenance and inspection pro-
cedures are performed according to the guide-
lines set forth in the Emergency Personnel
and Drogue Parachute Systems Manual,
NAVAIR 13-1-6.2, and the M a i n t e n a n ce
Requirements Cards, NAVAIR 13-600-4-6-3.
These manuals are continually updated, and
when using them, as in using any publica-
tion, you must first make sure that the
current changes are included. The manuals
will list all of the proper steps, procedures,
and points to inspect. They also give you
information about proper specifications, tech-
nical data, and are used to ensure that
all steps are followed, all details are in-
spected, and that all quality control items
are checked at the proper time by a quality
assurance inspector (QA). Using these manuals
is mandatory and ensures that you are follow-
ing the current and approved procedures.
Whenever a question on the construction
of parachute equipment comes up, you should
obtain and study the drawing that applies.
Repairs that are difficult should be compared
to the drawing to ensure that the finished
product is the same as the one in the draw-
ing. The drawing number or reference number
of a particular piece of parachute equipment
can be found in the applicable work package
in the Emergency Personnel and Drogue Para-
chute Systems Manual, NAVAIR 13-1-6.2.
All parachute maintenance is done by
the lowest level activity equipped to satis-
factorily perform the work. Mission, time,
equipment, trained personnel, and operational
needs are the basic considerations involved
in determining which level performs the