DALY CITY, Calif. (KGO) -- Officials say a paraglider died after colliding into a cliffside on Westline Drive near Mussel Rock Park Beach in Daly City on Sunday.
Firefighters and paramedics used a rope rescue system to make it to where the man was located, but were unable to revive him.
People ABC7 News spoke with to say conditions were ideal. The winds were calm, so it's unclear what caused the man to crash.
The paragliders who fly above Mussel Rock park in Daly City range from locals to out-of-towners and beginners to the experienced.
Every one of them was surprised to hear about Sunday morning's fatal accident. "We know a number of people that fly here all the time and the most we've ever heard about would be someone who maybe had a wing collapse, but it's recovered. We had a friend who hit a cliff, but he was fine just broke an arm," Heidi Lee said.
Crews say a witness told them the paraglider crashed into the cliff. They got the call at 9:30 a.m. and say he was dead by the time they arrived.
The victim was in his 50s and appeared to have been flying alone.
"The air is typically very smooth, usually we don't fly here early in the morning, so i'm not too sure why he was up early but really, it probably doesn't mean anything, I mean if the conditions were good," Mike Robinson said.
Mussel Rock Park Beach attracts paragliders from all over the Bay Area and beyond.
Those who love the sport say like anything, it has its risks. The accident is a sober reminder of its inherent danger. "We do our best to mitigate the risks. The payoff of flying is so amazing that it's worth some risk," Eric Blum said.
But for one man, it was a risk that ultimately cost him his life.
The incident is under investigation.