Base jumpers thrill crowds in Putrajaya


High spirits: A base jumper at the Putrajaya aerial show, in conjunction with National Day celebrations. — SHAARI CHEMAT/The Star

PUTRAJAYA: Seven men from the Malaysian Base Association (MBA) dove 58m from the Putrajaya Monorail Bridge to mark the administrative capital’s silver jubilee and National Day celebrations.

Witnessed by picnickers who craned their necks upwards, the base jumpers carried out their mission to carry the Putrajaya jubilee flag with them as they parachuted towards a target on the ground.

Bearing the flag was special officer to Putrajaya Corporation (PPJ) president Adi Khirman Marji, 38, who, after a safe landing, handed the flag to his boss.

Releasing his parachute as soon as he had launched himself off the bridge’s platform, Adi, who has clocked 385 skydives and 267 base jumps, reached the ground safely in 15 seconds yesterday.

This national flag will be carried by PPJ president Datuk Dr Aminuddin Hassim on the back of a Warmblood stallion in a parade and presented to Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa in full ceremony today.

Another jumper, Azuan Taharudil, 49, a parachute rigger, said wind conditions must be ideal before the jumpers make their dives.

“The moment you have wind speeds of up to 15 knots, you can’t jump. The jumper will drift off course, ” he said.

The longest Azuan ever waited throughout the 410 base jumps he has recorded in his log book was an hour.

Landing nearest to the target was Ahmad Zaharuddin Zainuddin, 56, who is also the reigning champion for the 2020 Putrajaya Base Jump Accuracy Challenge.

A retired parachute rigger with the special operations division of the Royal Malaysian Air Force, Ahmad has clocked 2,000 falls as a skydiver.

Ensuring the jumpers’ safety was their team leader, MBA president A. Aziz Ahmad, who constantly reminded picnickers and passing cyclists to look up so they could move out of a landing jumper’s way.

Aziz also ensured that rescue boats were present in case the jumpers ended up in the lake and a recovery ambulance was on standby in case of emergencies.

This was the second time Putrajaya incorporated base jumping in its National Day celebration.

In recognition of their commitment to the sport of base jumping and having successfully completed all four categories of fixed objects from which one can jump – building, antenna, span and earth – Aziz, Adi, Azuan, Ahmad and a policeman, Peter Johnny, were awarded certificates from the United States Base Association (USBA) by Aminuddin.

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