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Pattaya Daily News

15 February 2013 :: 14:02:57 pm 71897

Paragliding Chinese Tourist Snagged on Light Pole

A 44-year-old Chinese tourist was left dangling like a puppet from a Jomtien street pole, after his descending paraglider got hooked by the pole. Officers rescued the man, who suffered only slight scratches. It was the second paragliding accident involving a Chinese tourist in less than a week.
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PATTAYA – February 14, 2013 [Pattaya Daily News]; at 12 p.m., a report of a foreign tourist whose descending paraglider got snagged on a street pole was received by the See Khram radio center in Meuang Pattaya. After being notified, the officers coordinated with the unit of Protecting and Relief of Public Disasters in Pattaya to bring a ladder-extension vehicle to the scene.

The incident occurred at Jomtien beach, opposite to the beginning of Soi 4 on Jomtien beach road, Moo 12 Tambon Nong Preu, Amphur Banglamung, Chonburi province.

At the scene, officers discovered many Thai and foreign tourists standing around gawking. On a lamp pole about 15 meters high, a paraglider with a 5 meter wingspan was caught on the pole’s lamp extension. A Chinese tourist strapped in the hooked paraglider was hanging in the air above the ground. He was later identifed as Mr. Zhongping Bai, age 44.

The frightened tourist was shouting to ask for assistance. So the rescue officers first cut the rope attaching the paraglider to the blue towing boat, with the name of “Surat,” anchored near the shore. Rescuers then used the vehicle’s extension ladder to reach the stranded tourist. They freed him and brought him down safely. The tourist was not injured and suffered only slight scratches.

But the Chinese man ran to hide on the side of the beach in shyness, and did not want to notify the police to prosecute the paragliding owner. Meanwhile, the boat driver had quickly fled the scene. Authorities still could not find the driver and didn’t know where he escaped to.

Witnesses said Mr. Zhongping had paid 600 THB for the speedboat to tow him for a 30-minute paraglider ride. But as the boat was slowing down to let the tourist descend to the beach, the line of the paraglider got hooked by the lamp pole. Apparently the boat driver could not pull the paraglider past the pole with enough clearance space.

So it got stuck, and Mr. Zhongping was left dangling from his hooked paraglider on the pole. Fortunately, the rescue officers came to assist him in a timely manner, and the paraglider had not torn. Otherwise the Chinese tourist might have fallen and gotten injured or died.

The incident was the second paragliding accident involving a Chinese tourist in less than a week. Earlier, a 53-year-old Chinese man suffered a suspected broken leg at the end of his ride, when his paraglider had descended too fast and slammed into the ocean.

Reporter : Tanasab   Photo : Tanasab   Category : Community News

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