Chapter 19, Emergencies: Handling Wing Collapses
Preliminary reports are frequently wrong. This is a preliminary
report. We certainly hope the pilot recovers from this. This report was
and updated 2/19.
An experienced paramotor instructor was seriously hurt in an paragliding accident
(no motor) after
suffering some amount of collapse that resulted in him hitting the
ground hard. As of 2/19 he was in intensive care with brain trauma and
many broken bones but improving.
Injuries suggest that he was saved by a full-face helmet. He landed
mostly on his side.
He was reported to be flying solo on a 42 m� tandem wing around noon when
the accident took place. There were several surges and a spin. When we get more details, they will be included
along with an analysis.
A few points to ponder, though.
1. Flying a lightly loaded on a wing increases your susceptibility to
collapse. It's not confirmed that this pilot was doing so but it is a
factor, if true.
2. Flying mid-day (more than 3 hours after sunrise or earlier than 3
hours before sunset) increase the likelihood of getting into turbulence strong
enough to cause a collapse.
3. Consider wearing and learning how to use a reserve parachute if you
take on stronger conditions. This pilot apparently did have a reserve on
and tried to throw it but didn't have enough altitude. One observer
thought he was twice the height of the trees when the collapse first