Brit tourist killed in tragic base jumping accident in France as pal watched on

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A British tourist has been killed in a base jumping accident when he reportedly "crashed into a cliff" following difficulties with his parachute in France as his friend watched on.

The 34-year-old man, from Newnham, West Northamptonshire, was on holiday with three British friends, one of whom witnessed the horrific accident.

Police have launched an investigation into the tragedy in the Isere department and Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region.

It is not yet known whether the accident was a result of technical failure or human error.

A spokesman for the police said: “We are investigating to find out the cause of this accident. It appears that the man had possibly opened his parachute and then crashed into a cliff. But at present we don’t know exactly what happened."

The group had been holidaying in Millau where they had been base jumping, an extreme adrenaline sport which entails launching from a high fixed point, such as a cliff or building, and going into free-fall before deploying a parachute to slow the descent and land.

Base jumpers carry only one parachute in contrast with skydivers who jump with a main and a reserve parachute.

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On Tuesday, the weather was described as clear and the group decided to base jump in the gorges de la Bourne in the picturesque town of Châtelus.

They launched themselves off the Bournillon cliff. One of the man’s friends raised the alarm after seeing that his friend’s parachute would not open.

Rescuers were alerted shortly before 7pm when we was found at the base of a steep cliff, which was difficult for rescuers to reach.

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Two rescuers were winched as close as possible to the injured man.

Once he was secured, he was lowered to a more accessible opening before being airlifted in a critical condition to Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Grenoble Alpes,

The man tragically died from his injuries in the hospital.

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