Air accident investigators visit scene of paramotor crash

Air accident investigators visit scene of paramotor crash


Air accident investigators have visited the scene of a paramotor crash in North Clare which left one man injured.

The incident happened in a field at around 9.30 last night at Oughtmama near Bellharbour in North Clare.

A group of paramotoring enthusiasts were flying in ideal conditions in the area when one of the group crashed during take-off. The wheel-mounted paramotor appeared to lose control and crash into a stone wall after getting caught in an unexpected crosswind.

The trike buggy paramotor, equipped with a protective cage and reserve parachute, stuck the wall however the quick-thinking pilot managed to disconnect the power before impact and prevented a more serious collision.

Emergency services were quickly alerted and two units of the fire brigade from Ennistymon along with Gardaí and National Ambulance Service paramedics responded to the incident.

The injured man was treated at the scene before being removed to University Hospital Galway by ambulance. He is understood to have sustained multiple broken bones but his injuries, while serious, are not believed to be life-threatening.

Gardaí remained at the scene overnight pending the arrival of officials from the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) this morning.

Image: Pixabay

Two AAIU investigators arrived at the scene at 10.30am today to carry out a preliminary examination of the crash scene. A determination will be made in the coming days about whether a full and formal investigation of the incident will need to be undertaken.

Powered paragliding/paramotoring is paragliding with the assistance of a backpack power unit, including propeller, that attaches to the pilot’s harness and provides thrust for both climbing and level flight. Some paramotors can be launched on foot while others mounted on three or four-wheeled chassis’.

AAIU investigator arriving at the scene this morning – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2019
Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.