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Paragliders collide in mid-air and plunge into trees 4,000ft below

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Paragliders collide at 4,757ft and plummet into trees leaving one dangling by his harness in terrifying footage

  • Sebastien Watier, 31, found himself hurtling towards the ground from 4,757ft 
  • He collided with a paraglider due to converging winds and both fell into woods 
  • Their fall was broken by trees, but Mr Watier lost consciousness while hung up

This is the terrifying moment two paragliders crashed into each other thousands of feet in the air and then plummeted into woodland.

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Sebastien Watier, 31, from France, found himself hurtling towards the ground from 4,757ft with a tangled parachute after hitting a female paraglider.

His chute became caught in the trees and he lost consciousness for ten minutes while he was dangling from his harness, but both paragliders escaped serious injury in the incident on Friday May 22. 

Mr Watier, an experienced paraglider, lost control when converging winds caused him and one of his group to collide near Aiguebelette Lake, Savoie, France.

Footage from Mr Watier’s body camera shows the moment he realises another paraglider is heading straight for him from behind. 

He can be heard shouting a profanity in French as he tries to regain control of his tangled parachute and deploy the rescue wing.

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Mr Watier, who has been paramotoring for five years and paragliding for one, said that both he and his co-flyer were equally to blame as they weren’t paying attention to wind currents. 

Footage from Mr Watier’s body camera shows the moment he begins to lose control of his parachute after he is hit by another paraglider near Aiguebelette Lake, Savoie, France

He can be heard shouting a profanity in French as he tries to regain control of the tangled parachute and deploy the rescue wing while plummeting towards the trees

He can be heard shouting a profanity in French as he tries to regain control of the tangled parachute and deploy the rescue wing while plummeting towards the trees

The footage ends with Mr Watier's parachute becoming tangled in tree branches, leaving him stranded in the trees

The footage ends with Mr Watier’s parachute becoming tangled in tree branches, leaving him stranded in the trees 

He said: ‘The collision happened at 1,450m (4757ft) up in the air and we finished our course  300m (984ft) down in the trees.

‘As far as the circumstances are concerned, we’re both equally guilty as we were both in a thermal wind on converging routes.

‘A lack of attention from both of us lead to the collision. The lady did not suffer any injuries.

Mr Watier said he suffered a slight episode of unconsciousness after landing due to the restrictive harness suspending him from the trees. 

Mr Watier making a normal and safe landing while paragliding. During the crash landing he became stuck in the trees causing him to lose consciousness

Mr Watier making a normal and safe landing while paragliding. During the crash landing he became stuck in the trees causing him to lose consciousness

He added: ‘I was suspended 16ft (5m) above the ground so I suffered harness hang syndrome which caused me to lose consciousness for 10 minutes.

‘During the incident I stayed very calm to manage the situation as best as could.

‘After speaking to several instructors, they confirmed that bringing down the main wing to allow the rescue wing to deploy is very complicated when the wing is twisted above.’

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