SAN JACINTO (CNS) – A paraglider pilot was seriously injured late Thursday afternoon when he slammed into a hillside on the edge of the Soboba Indian Reservation in San Jacinto.
The crash was reported about 4:50 p.m. in the area of Soboba Road and State Street, according to the Riverside County Fire Department.
The victim, whose name was not released, was circling the location when he reportedly lost control and hit the butte. The pilot had departed Soboba Paragliding a short time before the accident, according to reports from the scene.
Firefighters hiked to the crash site and found the man with major injuries, possibly broken bones.
A Cal Fire chopper crew and a Mercy Air helicopter paramedic team were both sent to the location — the first to perform a hoist rescue, and the second to transport the victim to a trauma center after his airlift.
As of 5:45 p.m., the rescue operation was still in the works.
It was not immediately clear whether the victim was an amateur or professional paraglider pilot.
Soboba Paragliding requires training before allowing visitors to helm their own rigs, which consist of an overhead wing-like chute that enables users to soar, relying on thermals and winds for lift.