Ciara Romero died earlier this month while participating in a 70-foot bungee jump at a indoor recreation facility in Grand Junction, Colo.
After the bungee device she was using was tested and proven to be functioning properly, investigators are now searching for new clues as to why the 20-year-old woman plunged to her death.
The device was tested by its manufacturer, Boulder-based Head Rush Technologies, which reported the findings in a statement released to The Daily Sentinel. The findings were confirmed by a spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, Cher Haavind, who worked with the company to test the equipment.
She said the investigation will now move on to other factors that could have played a role in Romero’s death.
“This inspection involved testing which subjected the device to various loading profiles across a range of weights, where the velocity and force were recorded in simulated descents,” said the statement, which was released by Bill Carlson, Head Rush Technologies’ senior director of marketing. “The inspection and testing determined that the device, webbing and triple-locking carabiner were found to be intact, and functioning normally, with no apparent damage.”
Romero, a nurse, updated her Facebook profile picture on the morning of Jan. 4, the day she died.
At a recreational facility called Get Air at the Silo Trampoline Park, The Daily Sentinel said, “[P]articipants use a harness connected to a rope to climb one of the silo’s towers, then transfer to a wooden platform and jump off, down another tower, while attached to a rope. Users free fall for 15 to 20 feet and are caught by the device and lowered more slowly to the ground.
Haavind said investigators intend to concentrate on eyewitness statements regarding the tragedy while continuing to work with local police.
“We’re looking at all possible causes,” Haavind said. “This is extremely rare, which is why the investigation is taking longer.”
“Our priority is ruling out one thing at a time,” Haavind said about the investigation. “Do know that we’re working quickly to get an answer.”
The bungee device, called the QUICKjump XL, is temporarily prohibited from use in Colorado. The recreational facility has since reopened its trampoline park, but the silo jump where the unsolved accident occurred remains closed.
Get Air released a statement saying they feel “deep sorrow and profound sympathy for [Romero’s] family and friends in their loss, and expresses its sincere condolences to them.”
The statement continued: “We are fully cooperating with the Grand Junction Police Department, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration and Colorado State regulatory agencies in their investigations of the incident. We will have no further comment regarding this investigation or incident.”