The pair on a tandem dive, a local woman from Mission Beach aged 54, and another instructor in his 30s, also suffered critical injuries and died at the scene. Kerry Pike, the woman, mother of eight, had been given the skydive experience as a birthday gift by her family. Police believes the solo skydiver may have collided with the tandem skydivers in mid-air, with their parachutes failing to open properly. Skydive Australia confirmed it had suspended operations at Mission Beach while investigations into the incident continued.
Parachute in a tree at the scene of accident
“One chute was tangled and it wasn’t opening”. an unnamed witness said. The witness said it appeared the skydiver did not activate a backup parachute after the first one failed. Skydiving was one of the biggest tourist ventures in the local area. “We’re very saddened and grieved by what’s happened,” Cassowary Coast Regional Council mayor John Kremastos told to media. Queensland Police are on the scene. The Australian Parachute Federation also sent representatives to investigate. Detectives and scientific officers were called to the scene. No further details are available at this stage.