Watch paraglider rescue Florida woman stranded in alligator-infested canal

Paramotorist taking off at sunset
(Image credit: Getty)

A paramotorist became an accidental hero when he helped rescue a woman who had become stuck on the roof of a car nearly submerged in an alligator-infested Florida canal.

Christiano Piquet, an extreme sports athlete and realtor from Miami, was enjoying sailing though the skies with a friend before church on Sunday, when he noticed an alligator in the water and decided to drop a little lower to get a closer look. 

“There was a big one because he did a big splash, and I came down to see the alligator when I saw the car,” Piquet told NBC Miami.

When he did so, he noticed a person on top of a car in the water, and decided to make a tricky landing nearby in order to help. The motor of his paraglider made enough noise to attract the attention of a nearby resident, who came out with a rope to haul the stranded woman to safety.

Piquet was recording his flight using a helmet-mounted camera, and uploaded the resulting footage (which you can watch below) to his YouTube channel.

Florida is a spectacular state for exploring by land, sea, or air, and is home to some spectacular wildlife. Spotting an alligator can be the highlight of a trip, provided you're able to keep a safe distance from the animal.

If you're exploring Florida's wildlife preserves or the beautiful Everglades National Park, it's always wise to assume there will be alligators nearby. The animals often leave large indentations in the mud along the edges of rivers and lakes, where they bask beside the water and then slide back in.

Alligator attacks on humans are rare, but you can reduce your chances of an unwanted encounter by hiking during daylight hours, only swimming in designated areas, and not being tempted to feed them. If you are chased, your best course of action is to run. Unlike animals like bears or moose, alligators don't move very fast for very long, and tend to zig-zag, so if you run in a straight line you should b e able to escape.

For more advice, see our guide what to do if you see an alligator in Florida.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.