Ever since Luke Aikins was 16 years old, he has been racking up about 800 parachute jumps every year. The now 42-year-old daredevil now has an impressive record of 18,000 leaps, he tells The Associated Press that he has only had to use his reserve chute 30 times. After 18,000 jumps, how about ditching the parachute? Well, that’s what he’s about to do.
The third-generation skydiver and his team have been preparing this perilous stunt for months, and the moment of truth is almost here. This Saturday, the jump will happen at 8 p.m. EDT (5 p.m. PDT) above the Southern California desert. Luke’s jump will also be broadcasted live on Fox , as part of an hour-long TV special called “Heaven Sent.”
“I’m proving that we can do stuff that we don’t think we can do if we approach it the right way.
You might wonder how Luke plans to survive his stunt, not even having a wing suit to back him up. Well, he hopes to have good enough aim to land on a 100-foot by 100-foot net, hung up between some cranes at about 20 stories high. He hopes not to bounce out or to crash right through – unlike the 200-pound dummy a few weeks ago.
If all goes well, the impact with the net should look like this latest drop test, performed yesterday.
“I won’t just be guessing when I jump out at 25,000 feet, I’ll know exactly where I need to go,” Luke says to PEOPLE. But even though his leap should only take 126 seconds, he adds “I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t going to be nervous.” Still, he remains confident he’ll be hugging his wife and 4-year-old son after he sets his fourth world record.