Nirmal Purja Survives Parachuting Accident; Instructor Dies

Nirmal Purja nearly died in a parachuting accident today that killed a British instructor.

Purja, star of the Netflix documentary 14 Peaks, was practicing jumps in the La Juliana aerodrome in Sevilla, Spain, when the accident occurred.

“For reasons that are being investigated, the parachutes of the Nepalese climber and the instructor became entangled in the middle of the jump,” Diario de Sevilla wrote.

While Nims was able to open his reserve parachute and land, his partner “did not have time,” the newspaper wrote. The victim fell in a field outside the airfield with his parachute half-deployed.

The man who died was in his 30s and was working with Purja and a third person, both of whom survived unharmed. The group had been developing a training and improvement course for parachuting, local news reported.

The accident occurred at about 11 am Friday in the aerodrome.

According to Purja’s Instagram, the alpinist had been learning acrobatic skydiving and other parachute skills leading up to the accident.


Local police arrived after a witness reported the incident. The Civil Guard has also opened an investigation. Emergency responders arrived in a helicopter, but could only confirm the parachutist’s death.

For Nims Purja, it’s another close call under a canopy, and the latest in a streak of bad luck. The Elite Exped leader suffered minor back injuries just last month in a paragliding accident in Manaslu Base Camp. In September, three colleagues died in a fire that consumed the Elite Exped headquarters in Kathmandu.

Andrew McLemore

An award-winning journalist and photographer, Andrew McLemore brings more than 14 years of experience to his position as Associate News Editor for Lola Digital Media. Andrew is also a musician, climber and traveler who currently lives in Medellin, Colombia. When he’s not writing, playing gigs or exploring the outdoors, he’s hanging out with his dog Campana.