French soldier dies in wingsuit jump: Rescuers

A wingsuit jumper takes flight from Tianmen Mountain in central China's Hunan province.
A wingsuit jumper takes flight from Tianmen Mountain in central China's Hunan province.PHOTO: AFP

GRENOBLE, France (AFP) - A 39-year-old French soldier was killed on Saturday while attempting a wingsuit jump in the Alps, the latest casualty in what is regarded as one of the most dangerous extreme sports, a rescue worker said.

The man died after jumping off the 2,525m-high summit of Le Brevent in the French Alps.

"When his flying companion reached the ground, he realised something had gone wrong. He probably crashed into" the mountain, a rescue worker said, confirming the soldier's death.

His body was later found at an altitude of 2,100m.

An investigation into the accident has been opened.

American daredevil Johnny Strange died in the Swiss Alps in October while also attempting a jump in a wingsuit.

The average wingsuit jump lasts barely a minute and within eight seconds, the jumper reaches speeds of 200kmh.