Zipline trainer plunges to death in front of horrified students
Aaron Delannoy had been working on a zipline called the Death Ride when he decided to give it a go himself.
A man in charge of training school groups on a zipline called Death Ride plunged 10 metres in front of horrified children when his safety harness failed.
Aaron Delannoy, from Kortrijk, Belgium, died of multiple injuries when he plummeted from the ride on April 26. The 24-year-old had been working on the ride during an adventure sports event called the Big Happening in Zwenegem, Weson.
The site — full of daredevil rides — is a magnet for school trips, with hundreds turning up every day.
After overseeing the Death Ride for a day, Delannoy decided to have a go too, according to local media. But almost as soon as he set off, his safety equipment failed, and he crashed to the ground.
Local media reported that many children still at the event saw him fall to his death. He was declared deceased by paramedics called to the scene by supervisors. Kortrijk's public prosecutor's office has examined the site and a technical expert is preparing a report on the incident.
"A supervisor from the nature sports organisation Oenanthe decided to descend himself via the death ride around 8 pm," police commissioner Michael Vanden Heede said. "He had spent hours guiding young people. For reasons that are still unclear, things went completely wrong and he made a fatal fall."
'His dream job killed him'
Aaron's grief-stricken parents said "his dream job had killed him."
The mayor of Zwenegem, Marc Doutreluingne, admitted "the municipality owns the site but is not directly involved in the organisation of activities".
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"But, I know from personal experience that Oenanthe considers the safety of paramount importance," he said at the time. "As far as I know, this is the first time that a serious accident has happened. Today [Thursday], all adventurous activities at the event have been cancelled at the request of the municipality."
The accident is still being investigated by police. The location of the accident, a former power station, is a popular site for daredevils and outings for local boarding schools.
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