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BASE jumping is a fringe sport in which a person jumps from a fixed place and uses a parachute to slow down before the ground is reached. "BASE" is an acronym that stands for each of the four jump location categories: buildings, antennas, spans (bridges) and earth. This last is similar to jumping off a cliff. BASE jumping is considered an extreme sport. This means it involves speed, height, danger or spectacular stunts.
History from skydiving
The idea for BASE jumping came from skydiving. BASE jumps are usually made from much lower altitudes than skydives. Also, the jumper leaps closer to the platform or standing space. BASE jumps usually cause slower airspeeds than skydives because of being closer to the ground. So a BASE jumper does not always reach terminal velocity. Because higher airspeeds give jumpers more control of their bodies, as well as a quick parachute opening, the longer the delay, the better. BASE jumping is much more dangerous than skydiving from aircraft.
Another danger is that most BASE jumps have very small areas in which to land. A beginner skydiver, after the parachute opens, may have about a three minute or more parachute ride to the ground. A BASE jump from 500 feet will have a parachute ride of only 10 to 15 seconds.
In the news
In September 2013, three men jumped off the incompletely built One World Trade Center in New York City. They filmed their jump using cameras on their heads and later showed the video on YouTube. In March 2014, the three jumpers and one helper on the ground were arrested after turning themselves in.
- "BASENumbers.org". BASENumbers.org. http://www.basenumbers.org/. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
- Dizikes, Cynthia (April 22, 2011). "BASE jumpers fall for thrill-seeking lifestyle". Chicago Tribune. http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-04-22/news/ct-met-basejumping-20110421_1_base-jumpers-thrill-arrest. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
- Haley Draznin (26 March 2014). "Four men arrested in One World Trade Center jump stunt". CNN website. http://edition.cnn.com/2014/03/25/justice/one-world-trade-center-jump-stunt/. Retrieved 29 March 2014.