As I worked hard on updating, categorizing and tallying the accident files (links) I have on jump planes accidents I was amazed at some things I noticed and not surprised by others.  The ubiquitous Cessna 182 runs out of gas crashing short of the runway, not a surprise.  Really just dang frustrating.  But I noticed how many prop strikes of people occurred with Twin Otters.  In fact, in the list on this site back to 1982 it has more prop strikes on people than any other jump plane (4 of 8).  I find that amazing and understandable at the same time.  The very high wing easily walked under and the position of the engines NOT being in front of the nose sets up a situation that if not controlled precisely tragedy can occur.

I personally have almost had a prop strike with a jumper walking to my aircraft.  I travelled to a DZ that did not normally run a plane like the Twin Otter although it was no stranger.  The loading area was in a grassy area but the mockup used by jumpers to practice exits was IN FRONT of the plane relative to the “boarding area.”  There were no ropes, barriers or guides.  Skydivers should know not to walk into props.  Right?  Well guess what they do because they are human too and can make mistakes.

Read these reports and think about your operation.  Have you done all you can to set up a staging area that funnels jumpers/observers to the loading door? Do you use a loader with a hawkeye keen on jumpers wanting to give the pilot a special message (using smoke, long climb out, lost something in the right seat)?