Mayor of Rutledge Borough, PA killed in freak skydiving accident

03/28/2011 // Greensboro, NC, USA // Personal Injury Lawyers News // Nicole Howley

Philadelphia, PA — A freak skydiving accident has claimed the life of a small town Pennsylvania mayor who took joy in the sport that ultimately led to his death. C. Scott Shields, the mayor of Rutledge Borough near Philadelphia died on Friday, March 25, 2011 at around 4:30 p.m. when he jumped from a plane in South New Jersey, reported the New York Daily News.

Authorities reported that Shields, 45, was killed when his main parachute didn’t open when he jumped 13,000 feet above Monroe Township.

According to friends, Shield didn’t pull his main chute, but his reserve chute did eventually deploy automatically. The reserve chute likely opened too late to save his life.

“The automatic opener fires at about 750 feet — it’s your last chance,” Mark Kruse, a skydiving instructor explained to Pennsylvania’s Delaware County Times newspaper. “His deployed, but it didn’t open all the way, which can happen if you are tumbling.”

Some believe that Shields may have went unconscious during the skydive.

A preliminary autopsy unveiled that Shields died from several injuries acquired in the fall.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is investigating the accident and examining his parachute, the plane, and the circumstances of the jump.

Legal News Reporter: Nicole Howley-Legal news for Philadelphia personal injury lawyers.

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