7 paragliding pilots killed in 19 years

7 paragliding pilots killed in 19 years

At least seven persons died after falling off paragliders in last 19 years since the adventurous sport was launched in and around Pokhara.

The latest victim was 46-year-old South Korean pilot Hwane Yan Gak, who fatally fell off the craft on Saturday.

He had fallen into the Phewa Lake before locals had rescued and rushed him to the Gandaki Medical College, where he breathed his last during treatment.

Nepal Airsports Association (NAA) said all victims of paragliding accidents were pilots, who were flying alone.

Generally, a trained pilot takes another person with him/her in the adventurous activity.

NAA President Yogesh Bhattarai said no one from general enthusiast except the pilots was killed in paragliding accidents so far.

Bhattarai said more than two dozen persons were injured in the accidents till the date.

NAA said it is working to operate rescue boats to carry out rescue operations in case of accidents.

Total seven death tolls in 19 years is not a dangerous figure, he commented.

According to records, most paragliding tourists are Chinese, Indian and Nepalis. In a fine day, as many as 300 tourists take on paragliding flight in Pokhara, according to tourism entrepreneurs.

Nearly 100,000 persons enjoy this tourist attraction in a year, they said. The service is not available on rainy and stormy days.

Sarankot of Pokhara has been listed on top five paragliding destinations of the world by various international media, according to former member of Nepal Tourism Board Tikaram Sapkota.

As many as 22 companies are operating paragliding business in Pokhara and around.

Source: THT