Andi Dorfman's 'The Bachelorette' bachelor Eric Hill in coma after paragliding accident
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/23/2014
Eric Hill, a 32-year-old California native who currently resides in Salt Lake City, UT and will be competing on the upcoming tenth season of The Bachelorettestarring Andi Dorfman, reportedly suffered critical injuries from a paragliding accident.
According to Unified Fire Authority, Hill's parachute collapsed when he was between 15 to 20 feet in the air near Point of the Mountain in Draper, UT, on Sunday afternoon, causing him to crash into the mountainside, CBS' KUTV-TV affiliate in Salt Lake City reported.
"He experienced a partial parachute collapse, which swung him into the mountainside with some velocity," UFA Battalion Chief Brian Anderton told KUTV. "It doesn't seem like he fell an extremely long distance, but the velocity that he went into the hillside was enough to cause some trauma."
Hill was reportedly paragliding with friends at the flight park about 3PM when the accident occurred and was found unconscious but breathing around 150 feet up the mountain. UFA then reportedly called a technical rescue team to carry Hill down the mountain to AirMed paramedics, who took him via medical helicopter to the University of Utah Hospital in critical condition.
Dorfman picked Hill for her first one-on-one date of the season, according to Reality Steve, which is typically an indication he was an early frontrunner to win her heart. However, the accident reportedly took place once Hill returned home and therefore did not occur while the show was filming.
Hill's friend Derek Mazur witnessed the crash while standing on the ground below. He told KUTV that Hill was wearing a helmet but had been gliding too low.
"He just came down the mountain a little bit. He was getting super low," Mazur explained. "[He] just took a little turbulence and collapsed part of his wing, and it kind of spun him up. He's well-experienced. He knows what he's doing -- just kind of that time of year. Spring, the air is really rough and a lot of turbulence."
Hill's sister Karen Tracy also took to Facebook to express her concern.
"I know I don't post much, but if you happen to read this, please pray for my brother. He's in critical condition after a paragliding accident at Point of the Mountain in Draper, UT," Tracy wrote.
The Bachelorette's tenth season will premiere Monday, May 19 at 9PM ET/PT on ABC.