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Friday, Oct 31, 2014
Pasco Tribune

Skydivers’ deaths ruled an accident by Pasco medical examiner

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The deaths of two Icelandic skydivers was ruled an accident Monday by the Pasco County medical examiner.

Based on the examiner’s findings, both skydive instructor Orvar Amarson, 41, and his student Andrimar Pordarson, 25, died from blunt trauma.

They died Saturday during jumps at a Skydive City in Zephyrhills.

The co-owner of the facility said the pair did not deploy their main parachutes. However, the deaths are still under investigation by the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.

One of the men recorded the fatal fall on a camera attached to his helmet. A detective investigating the case viewed the video Sunday, a sheriff’s spokeswoman said.

The sheriff’s office reiterated that the video would not be released to the media until the investigation was completed.

The men jumped separately, not in tandem.

Both men had backup automatic activation devices, which deploy if the main parachutes are not deployed in time.

"Those devices activated on both of them ... but the reserves did not have time to deploy fully," Skydive City co-owner T.K. Hayes said. "They were out of the containers but not inflated in time before they impacted."

Hayes was at the scene with officials Saturday, sorting through the men's gear to determine whether all parts had been working.

The two victims had successfully completed two other jumps Saturday morning with 20 other people. But when they didn't return from their third jump, their disappearance tipped off a search, Pasco County sheriff's spokeswoman Melanie Snow said.

They were part of a group of about 12 who travel from Iceland to Florida every year to jump, Hayes said.

On Sunday, Icelandic officials said they were still contacting family and friends of the men.

"We will assist the families if they request our assistance. I'm not aware of them contacting us," said Urdur Gunnarsdottir, press officer for the Foreign Ministry of Iceland.

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