Parasailing mishap 7 injured, 1 hospitalised

GEORGE TOWN, Malaysia - Seven people were injured and one hospitalised after yet another parasailing mishap along the tourism belt of Batu Feringghi here.

The incident occurred when a group on a company trip was taking part in team-building activity along the beachfront of the Hard Rock Hotel yesterday.

In the incident, a man who was attempting to land after parasailing collided with the members of the group on the beach.

The hotel's marketing and communications manager, Elisa Saw, said their staff members immediately called an ambulance at about 10am.

At press time, the parasailer had yet to be identified.

The group had lodged a police report and had also given a statement to the Penang Municipal Council (MPPP).

The mishap occurred despite the state government's move to have designated parasailing landing zones on the beach, which had been enforced by the local authorities since September last year.

A victim, manufacturing engineer Kangeyan Ramachandran, 51, said that he passed out after the paraglider landed and the glider's strings snagged him by the neck.

"I was not facing the parachute when it hit me," he said, adding that doctors found two fractures on his neck bone.

Yesterday's incident was the latest in a string of incidents involving water sports along the beach.

In January, a tourist knocked into his brother with a water scooter while another parasailer, a Chinese national, landed on a Singaporean tourist.

A month earlier, two Australian women suffered serious injuries after their water scooter collided with another scooter.

Later that month, a college student and his uncle became entangled in a tree while parasailing.

In June last year, a five-year-old girl sustained injuries after she was hit by a horse ridden by a man fleeing from council officers.

A 32-year-old Myanmar national was jailed six months in March last year for ramming his water scooter against a tourist.

State Local Government and Traffic Management committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow could not be reached for comment.

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