The Rules of Paragliding – Understanding the Paragliding Rules and Regulations

Rules of Paragliding

As with any sport or activity in life, there are paragliding rules and regulations in place that not only optimize pilot safety but protect those around flyers as well. Because the reality is that even though paragliding is such a wonderful, heart-pumping sport that anyone can enjoy, all it takes is one little mishap to spiral some pretty awful injuries and damages. Now, most expert flyers know or should know, the rules of paragliding by heart to keep them and others safe. If you are new to the scene or are looking to become a pilot yourself, here is a comprehensive breakdown of just what the paragliding rules and regulations entail.  

Inspection Regulations

  • A pilot must quality check their gear before every flight. IE even advanced pilots sometimes can forget to close a leg strap so having a strong preparation routine is a must. Look for weak spots on the wing/lines, and if anything seems out of the ordinary then they should refrain from flying and have the wing inspected.
  • Schedule regular equipment inspection checks to ensure safety. It is your responsibility to make sure your gear is in perfect airworthy condition. A regular glider inspection every year 0r 100 hours is best. A reserve repack every 6 months or every year at least can avoid malfunctions. 

Take-Off and Landing 

  • Never fly in conditions that will debilitate vision. Only fly in clear conditions and in winds that you are able to control within your skill level. This includes not flying at night.
  • Your landing site should be easily accessible and clear to see. In addition, it should be favorable to land on to avoid injuries. A lot of accidents like broken ankles and legs occur during rough landings. 
  • Under no circumstances should you fly under the influence. No smoking or drinking before any flight, as any impairments can lead to a severe lack of judgment and injuries for you and others.

Anti-Collision Rules

  • Since your wing might fly faster or slower than others, passing another flyer is permitted. And if you do pass, it should be done on the right with plenty of clearance. If there is no room to pass, you should just move back. 
  • If two gliders are heading towards one another and could crash, both should alter their course to the right to avoid collision risk.
  • Don’t fly above or below another glider that is close by. In any case, the glider below has the right of the way since he/she can not see you because of his/her wing. In short, if he or she goes up faster than you, you will have to let him pass.
  • If you are ridge soaring, turn away from the ridge and into the wind to avoid the collision. 
  • Always thermal in the same direction. If there is already another pilot circling in the thermal he/she set the direction, so you have to turn in the same way.
  • Never take off, land, or fly around an open-air event, schools, airports, and no-fly zones. 

Conclusion – Flying Safely 

When it comes to the rules of paragliding, it all boils down to one primary thing, safety. Paragliding is labeled as an extreme recreational sport, and it can be all too easy to miss a critical step that fosters potential adversities, and yes, even death in some instances. Paragliding rules and regulations are very strict and must know them before becoming a certified pilot yourself. 

Overall, the whole point of paragliding is to have fun and become enriched with the fact that you are soaring through the air. However, the only way to do that and be as safe as possible simultaneously is to embed the paragliding rules and regulations during your training and well beyond. Remember, these international rules and regulations are in place for a reason, and as long as you follow them, then you are setting yourself up for a safe, yet exciting flight every single time. 

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