Greenpeace Involuntarily Brings Paragliding into Discussion
Experience has shown that significant football events such as the European Championship cast a spell over countless fans worldwide. But what the TV viewers got to see shortly before the start of the France-Germany match was not expected. Soon before the beginning of the game, a paraglider glided into the stadium and attempted to land on the field. The audience held their breath for a moment as the Greenpeace activist had difficulties keeping his parachute under control. But in the end, everything went well; he landed on the pitch.
However, the planned protest action by Greenpeace failed to have an impact across the board. Finally, the focus was entirely on the paraglider who almost landed in the stands. His action violated all rules of the sport. The activist flew in from outside the stadium and stumbled. Before that, it touched a suspension cable for a camera hovering over the stadium. When he started the spontaneous emergency landing on the lawn, several German players and the referee could evade in time.
An Enormous Risk
Flight instructors were then horrified by the action. They pointed out that flying over a football stadium would involve enormous risks as these buildings often behave like boiling pots. The summer temperatures and the changing wind conditions can quickly lead to turbulence. The paraglider from Greenpeace also felt this heavily. After all, there are separate flight routes as well as take-off and landing sites for motorized paragliders, which the authorities must approve in advance. That also applies to helicopters.
Blessing in Disguise
The activist was just lucky. Video recordings clearly show that he no longer had any control over the glider for a whilr. It was sheer luck that the campaign ended somewhat well. This flight with the paraglider served a good cause. Greenpeace wanted to protest against the car manufacturer Volkswagen as it was was one of the sponsors of the European Football Championship, which this time took place in numerous countries on the continent. The environmental organization then apologized on Twitter for the unsuccessful protest. The Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder, however, was not very enthusiastic. He threatened with legal consequences as extensive safety precautions apply to significant sporting events. It was no different this time in Munich. But the activist was lucky again, because. the large label of Greenpeace on the paraglider saved them from drastic policy measures.
Germany Lost the Game
The stadium security discovered the paraglider on the approach and initiated countermeasures. The German Football Association also subsequently described the action as unacceptable. To make matters worse, the athletes from Germany then also lost the game. At the start of the European Football Championship, Germany was anything but solid and, with great luck, only lost 1-0 to France. The excitement subsided quickly after the game, but the focus was on paragliding. Numerous teachers emphasized that this action should not impact the athletes negatively as the vast majority of them practice sport responsibly and cannot identify with such a risky activity.