A skydiver who landed hard after problems with his parachute may only have survived due to the soft, swampy ground.
Taupo man Liam Dunne, 35, suffered serious injuries when both his main and reserve parachutes failed to deploy properly in a jump 13,000 feet (4,000 metres) above Motueka Airport on Thursday afternoon.
He's in a stable condition after being transferred to Christchurch from Nelson Hospital on Friday morning.
Mr Dunne is an experienced skydiver and was taking part in the Good Vibes skydiving festival when the accident happened.
Skydive Abel Tasman's Stuart Bean, who is co-ordinating the festival, told NZ Newswire Mr Dunne's main parachute opened but he did not appear to have control of it so elected to release it and use his reserve chute.
However, for some reason that did not open immediately.
Police said the reserve parachute deployed automatically about 750 feet above the ground and slowed his fall.
He avoided the tarmac runway but still landed heavily on the grass, with his feet leaving a 10cm imprint.
Mr Bean said he believed the fact the soil was wet was a major factor in Mr Dunne's survival.
"If you're going to hit something, if it's soft it's going to help," he told Fairfax.
St John team manager Gary Tobin said Mr Dunne was assessed for spinal injuries, and did not have the kind of leg injuries he had seen at similar accidents.
Mr Bean said the company will carry out an investigation and report to the Civil Aviation Authority, Department of Labour and the NZ Parachute Industry Association (NZPIA).
The investigation will include reviewing footage from helmet cameras of three others who took part in the jump alongside Mr Dunne.
An NZPIA spokesman said an investigation would take place into Mr Dunne's equipment, and why it had not deployed properly.
The festival, attended by 120 skydivers resumed on Friday.