Dramatic scenes unfolded yesterday after a Red Devil parachutist’s chute failed to open – before a team-mate caught him mid-air.
The incident took place at the Whitehaven Air Show in Cumbria on Friday night.
Both men crashed into harbour waters below and no injuries were sustained.
In a message on the show’s Facebook page, the parachute display team said: “We can confirm that the Red Devil parachutists are both safe and sound. For the first time in 25 years they had a parachute fail.”
“One team member caught his team-mate and brought him into Queens Dock. Our safety procedures worked perfectly and a huge thank you to Whitehaven Marina for getting them out of the water so quickly.”
Eyewitness Sarah David wrote: “Glad to hear both are OK, was awful watching them struggling, especially when they veered off course- until we realised they were purposefully targeting the biggest area of water for ditching in to.”
Linda Weir praised the quick thinking actions of the team-mate who came to the rescue: “We were watching it on the field by the candlestick! Thankfully both were safe and well. Quick reactions on the part of his team mate. What a hero.”
Formed in 1963, the Red Devils are a team of display parachutists made up of 12 serving soldiers from three battalions of the British Army’s Parachute Regiment. Each member has at least three years experience and has taken part in at least one operational tour of duty in the Falklands, Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan or Iraq.