Paramotor Safety

Paramotor Safety Improvements

Jan 15, 2007 | Section V: Choosing Gear, Chapter 27 Paramotor | A Better Paramotor

Here are some things I've seen in my travels or in my inbox that are positive developments for paramotor safety. I believe every machine should reasonably protect against certain likely events, such as falling. You can see the range of safety ideas on A Better Paramotor. Here is a celebration of improvements actually made by manufacturers or individuals.

Olympic Powered Paragliding

2008-04-05 In an effort to reduce the propeller strike risk associated with starting a paramotor, Tom Scott of OlympicPPG has implemented a safety shutoff switch. The tilt-sensitive (mercury in this case) switch is placed such that any tipping beyond about 25 in any direction will activate the kill circuit and shut off the motor. It protects against a tipping motor during start or if the pilot falls.

A manual toggle switch bypasses the tilt circuit so human action can still defeat it or leave the protection bypassed. It must be bypassed to stand up although he's considering trying a momentary switch that the pilot pressed to bypass the protection circuit. That would allow the pilot to bend over to pick up the risers, for example.

Tom has one mounted on one of his paramotors and continues to test it. Hopefully, if it proves to be practical, other makers will implement the idea.

For more information contact Tom Scott at Olympic Paragliding, Forks, WA or phone 360-374-9247 or visit or phone Forks, WA or eMail him at


2008-04-05 Another step in the right direction of pilot protection is found on the newest Paratoys "Rhino" cage. Very stout netting covers the entire top half of the motor so that it would prevent an open human hand from hitting the prop, even at full rated thrust. The second hoop completely encloses the prop to provide further protection and lessen the chance that lines will get chopped on a biffed launch.

Like nearly all double hoop designs, the area between the inner hoop and outer hoop does not have netting, so pilots must still be careful about reaching back, as always.

For more information, visit

The automatic cutoff switch is mounted level so that, if it tilts more than about 25, the motor shuts off.

© 2016 Jeff Goin & Tim Kaiser   Remember: If there's air there, it should be flown in!