This week, a person known as the “Jet Pack Man” took off wearing his jet pack. The stunt test-run had been done plenty of times before but on Friday morning, it went horribly wrong.
Nick Macomber is the Vice President of Jet Pack International. He’s known as “Jet Pack Man” due to his extensive hands-on work with his company’s products. He’s been seen in videos from Dublin to China to Denver flying his jet pack off buildings and straight up into the air.
On Friday morning, Macomber took one of the jet packs from his office and got it set up for a test run in the parking lot of an energy drink company (Go Fast) located on the 2600 block of West 8th Avenue, just north of Interstate 25 and 6th Avenue, in Denver. He’d made some changes to the jet pack and needed to test it in order to ensure it was acting correctly — a test he’s run plenty of times before.
The plan was to flip the jet pack on and hover about 10 feet off the ground, then land safely.
“He had made some changes to the machine so that’s why we do these test flights and if something needs adjusting this is where we figure that out,” Troy Widgery, CEO of Jet Pack International, told CBS Denver.
Things began well enough.
Jet Pack Man got up into the air and hovered at approximately 10 to 20 feet. Since the hydrogen peroxide-fueled jet pack is capable of shooting up to 150 feet into the air and able to hover in flight for roughly 30 seconds, traveling up to 80 miles an hour, the short trip of less than the height of most trees, shouldn’t have been an issue.
As Jet Pack Man attempted to land, however, something went wrong.
“It was a control issue. The thrust was on when he hit the ground,” Widgery told FOX31 Denver after explaining that Macomber had just made a few modifications to the jet pack.
As Jet Pack Man attempted to land, something affected the speed of the pack and he zoomed into the ground head first.
He would have been better off if he was wearing his helmet.
“He should’ve been wearing a helmet, but he’s so good, and again this was just a test flight. If he would have been doing a performance flight he obviously would have been wearing a helmet but he was just going 10 feet off the ground,” Widgery told The Denver Channel.
“[Jet Pack Man] was bleeding, he had head wounds where he had blood gushing on his face, he was spitting out blood, it looks like he had landed on his knees and he couldn`t get up,” Alison McCoy, a witness from the Premier Roofing company next door, told FOX31 Denver. “They always have protective gear, helmet the whole shebang but nobody seemed to notice that this time.”
Jet Pack Man was rushed to Denver Health Medical Center and reports came back that Macomber had landed on his head and then slid across the pavement. The crash caused a broken jaw, 27 stitches, a broken ankle, and numerous burns all over his body. The right side of his head was scalped.
Due to the many burns he suffered, Jet Pack Man was transferred to the burn ward at the University Of Colorado Hospital. He was released Saturday afternoon.
“He’s going to be fine. He has some burns and he’ll be fine,” Widgery explained to The Denver Channel.
Widgery insisted that Macomber will now be required to wear a helmet whenever operating a jet pack.
[Photo By AP Photo/P. Solomon Banda]