PARAGLIDER Shane Tighe at a spot overlooking the site of a crash at Glass House Mountains yesterday.
PARAGLIDER Shane Tighe at a spot overlooking the site of a crash at Glass House Mountains yesterday. Nicky Moffat

Fear won't stop us flying: Paragliders after crash

PARAGLIDERS Shane Tighe and Ben French were looking on when one of the pilots in their group crashed into trees at the Glass House Mountains on Saturday.

He suffered multiple injuries including fractures to his legs, and was taken by helicopter to Nambour General Hospital.

Brisbane resident Ben said it had been "a pretty bad mistake on his behalf" but said the pilot acted quickly, contacting his group and emergency services "when he realised his legs were bad".

"He made the best out of a bad situation, and hopefully he's alright."

 

Shane, a Maroochydore resident and keen paraglider, said finding rising air to "catch" was a constant challenge in the sport, and was how the injured pilot got himself in trouble.

"It's a challenge, because you don't know where that rising air is, you need to try and find it, which is what happened today," he said.

"He was looking for that rising air and he just got tripped up in a tree."

Shane said he would definitely not be put off from the sport.

"It's freedom, you're like a bird," he said. "You can fly wherever.

"We climb up in the rising air like an eagle, and you just fly as high as you can normally."

 

He said paragliding was rewarding because it was difficult, and dangerous.

The injured paraglider was rescued by a RACQ Life Flight helicopter about an hour after calling for help yesterday, with more than 15 emergency services personnel including advanced care paramedics racing to his aid.

Shane said the paraglider had been "really positive" after his crash landing.    

"You wouldn't really know he was injured. You could talk to him normally.

"He was just like, 'it hurts, my leg's sore'. Very calm."  

Ben said the pilot's experience level was "intermediate" - he had flown for about two years.

Superintendent Mark Stuart, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services zone commander, Sunshine Coast said there had been several incidents involving paragliders recently.

"North Coast region has responded to a few incidents of this nature," he said.

"It's a very exhilarating sport but all activities have their own risks and obviously something when you're flying can have a higher risk and consequence."    



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