29th Mar 2012 4:29pm | By Jahn Vannisselroy
A New Zealand man is blaming media hype for having to call off a tandem skydive with his two-year-old son
Aucklander Aaron Marriott, the owner of a skydiving business, planned to leap from a plane at about 2500 metres with his son Elijah.
But media coverage in both New Zealand and Australia forced him to think again.
“We just wanted it to be a fun family thing,” Marriot said.
“We're going 8000ft (2500m) because we'll be falling about 200km/h and because he's so young, it might be hard for him to breathe,” he told the Herald.
“We'll freefall for about 10 seconds - it'd be OK if he can't really breathe for 10 seconds, but if it was a whole minute, no.”
An outcry sounded when a skydiving expert told the New Zealand Herald the freefall could cause a shift in Elijah's cerebral fluid.
Paediatric Society president Rosemary Marks said the two-year-old was too young to know what he was getting himself into.
There is no minimum age for tandem skydiving in New Zealand but companies, including Marriott's, normally request parental permission for under-16s.