LA JOLLA — Authorities have publicly identified two men who were killed when their paragliders collided at the Torrey Pines Gliderport in La Jolla.
The collision between 43-year-old Glenn Johnny Peter Bengtsson of Carlsbad and 61-year-old Raul Gonzalez Valerio of Laguna Hills happened around 2:40 p.m. Saturday, according to the San Diego Medical Examiner’s Office.
The victims were flying separately about 35 feet in the air when they collided, then fell onto a steep cliff face about 45 feet below the edge, San Diego Lifeguard Lt. Rich Stropsky told the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Bengtsson was certified to fly on his own and Valerio was working on his certification but had flown 20 to 25 times, according to the Union-Tribune.
Valerio was flying south when he made a hard right turn into the path of Bengtsson, who was flying northbound, Stropsky told the newspaper.
Their canopies became entangled, and they fell straight down onto the cliff before catching on a knoll, leaving them stranded.
Paramedics responded, but both men were pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Medical Examiner’s Office.
Authorities weren’t sure whether the fatal injuries were caused by the initial impact or the cliff crash, the Union-Tribune reported.