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Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Nobody » Thu Nov 03, 2011 6:44 pm

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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:10 pm

I'm sorry, but I'm not familiar with (or don't remember) the story behind that accident. The video wasn't very explicit other than to say that it was a beginner's mistake. Can anybody (or Nobody) fill us in?

Also, if this was a Failure to Hook In accident, then I'd like to combine this topic with the other FTHI topic so we can keep everything together. Please let me know if you have any reasons why that shouldn't be done.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Nobody » Fri Nov 04, 2011 6:00 pm

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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby TadEareckson » Fri Nov 04, 2011 6:49 pm

Note the Packsaddle interpretation of the "just prior to launch" clause.

P.S. I'm pretty sure it's Shane Nestle rather than Nestle Shane.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:31 pm

That was an excellent description of the accident. It reminds me of how much I was surprised by the relative difference between upwind speed and downwind speed when I was first learning. I'd already had a lot of small aircraft experience under my belt - where the upwind/downwind difference was a relatively small component of ground speed (since the plane was almost always travelling at 60+ mph). So I remember being surprised at how much difference it made to head toward a hill rather than away from it in a hang glider or paraglider - even though I'd been sufficiently warned about it.

So I'm wondering what can be done to help new pilots realize these dangers in a more controlled environment. As a "computer guy", the first thing that comes to my mind is using a simulator. I know a simulator was a huge help in learning to fly RCs with a minimum amount of repair time. Fly, crash, and reset is much easier than fly, crash, and repair. Any other thoughts on how we can do a better job protecting H2 pilots in that vulnerable stage of their training?

Thanks, by the way, for the post Nobody. I encourage everyone to take a look at that report.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby TadEareckson » Sun Nov 06, 2011 10:53 am

That was an excellent description of the accident.

1. Excellent description - yes. Accident - no.

2. That's what they look like BEFORE USHGA and Herr Tim get ahold of them. This:

Steve Morris - 2010/03/31

In 2009 there were several serious hang gliding accidents involving pilots on the HG forum (or who had close friends on the forum that reported that these accidents had occurred). In each case there was an immediate outcry from forum members not to discuss these accidents, usually referring to the feelings of the pilots' families as a reason to not do so. In each case it was claimed that the facts would eventually come out and a detailed report would be presented and waiting for this to happen would result in a better informed pilot population and reduce the amount of possibly harmful speculation.

In each of these cases I have never seen a final detailed accident report presented in this forum. So far as I can tell, the accident reporting system that has been assumed to exist here doesn't exist at all, the only reports I've seen are those published in the USHPA magazine. They are so stripped down, devoid of contextual information and important facts that in many cases I have not been able to match the magazine accident report with those mentioned in this forum.

The end result has been that effective accident reporting is no longer taking place in the USHPA magazine or in this forum. Am I the only one who feels this way?

is what they look like AFTER.

It reminds me of how much I was surprised by the relative difference between upwind speed and downwind speed when I was first learning.

How 'bout the issue of how he managed to get pointed downwind in the first place?

Any other thoughts on how we can do a better job protecting H2 pilots in that vulnerable stage of their training?

Yeah.

1. Don't sign people off on Hang Two ratings until they've been taught and have consistently demonstrated Hang Two proficiency skills and procedures.

2. Suspend or revoke the Instructor certification of people who sign people off on Hang Two ratings before they've been taught and have consistently demonstrated Hang Two proficiency skills and procedures.

Thanks, by the way, for the post Nobody. I encourage everyone to take a look at that report.

Do you recall your response when *I* referenced that fatality about three weeks ago?

bobk - 2011/10/18

Otto Lilienthal died in a glider accident in 1896. Maybe you should mention that as well?

Anybody have a comment on:

Tad Eareckson - 2011/11/05

Note the Packsaddle interpretation of the "just prior to launch" clause.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:30 pm

TadEareckson wrote:
bobk wrote:Thanks, by the way, for the post Nobody. I encourage everyone to take a look at that report.

Do you recall your response when *I* referenced that fatality about three weeks ago?

Tad, Al had started a topic to discuss his first high flight, and you posted this:

TadEareckson wrote:
Shane Nestle

John Seward
2010/06/26

Being that John was still very new to flying in the prone position, I believe that he was likely not shifting his weight, but simply turning his body in the direction he wanted to turn. Because his altitude was nearly eye level for me, it's difficult to judge what his body was doing in the turn. And because the turn was smooth throughout, it would make sense that he was cross controlling the turn. It was also supported by Dan's observations.

And one "pilot" slamming back into the face of Packsaddle - and possibly some of Eric Aasletten's scattered ashes - and leaving in a body bag. So I hope all those other guys are having enough fun flying to compensate.

Your post had nothing to do with Al's first high flight, and you didn't provide any reference to the location of the full report of Eric's death. Compare that to Nobody who simply posted a link to the full report in a new topic. He didn't rain on Al's parade or make some tortured comparison between Al's fun and Eric's death. He just posted a link so we could read it for ourselves - which I did.

My point is that you could learn a lesson from Nobody. If you keep your posts short and on topic, then people will actually read them. But if you want to slice and dice every published word 10 times over, then you're going to find fewer people reading what you write.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby TadEareckson » Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:54 pm

Tad, Al had started a topic to discuss his first high flight, and you posted this...

...in response to Pilgrim's statement:

That said, there can be no doubt that Jeff is responsible for more people successfully becoming competent pilots in your area than the rest of them combined.

...with which I happen to have a bunch of huge problems - not the least of which is that there's much evidence of competent pilots in that area.

Your post had nothing to do with Al's first high flight...

I really, really, really disagree with that statement.

...and you didn't provide any reference to the location of the full report of Eric's death.

1. John Seward's death.

2. Yeah, the full report would've been really tough to find - for somebody who's been trapped in a cave for twenty years and has never heard of a search engine.

3. I quoted the part of the full report with which I was most concerned with respect to Al's flight.

Compare that to Nobody who simply posted a link to the full report in a new topic.

Yeah. So?

He didn't rain on Al's parade...

1. How 'bout letting Al decide if I'm raining on his parade?

2. This isn't about parades.

3. Al's first couple of flights off of Packsaddle haven't been all about fun.

...or make some tortured comparison between Al's fun and Eric's death.

1. John Seward's death.

2. What "tortured comparison"?

He just posted a link so we could read it for ourselves - which I did.

And I just posted a quote everybody was quite free to ignore - which, I suspect, lots of people did.

If you keep your posts short and on topic, then people will actually read them.

1. Funny, just a moment ago you were criticizing me for just giving a sound bite instead of linking to a highly detailed, long winded "explanation" of the 2010/06/26 Packsaddle fatality.

2. So people AREN'T actually reading my posts?

3. I welcome the kind of people who don't read my posts to not read my posts - it can have only a positive effect on the gene pool.

But if you want to slice and dice every published word 10 times over, then you're going to find fewer people reading what you write.

1. Yeah. And?

2. This is a really crappy sport for people with short attention spans - and short attention spans is most of what's wrong with it.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sun Nov 06, 2011 4:21 pm

Tad, I will reiterate that your post had nothing to do with Al's first high flight. Whether you're talking about Eric or John, you have not connected the dots between their deaths and Al's first flight. If you'd like to do so in an effort to help Al, I think that would be great. Thanks in advance.
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Re: Fatal hang gliding accident

Postby SamKellner » Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:47 pm

We don't need to worry about Al. He won't be having any fatal HG accidents. He sold his glider and harness last week.

After taking lessons for >2yr, platform, scooter tow, and the solo FL flight he posted here, none of the instructors would even give him a H-1.

I am not sure how much $$ he spent on training. He has enough experience to offer some good advice, he heard it time and time again from the instructors.

As pilot, Al even demonstrated scooter tow launches for the new students, yet that instructor would not give him a rateing.

After that first FL flight at Packsaddle, which included gaining altitude above launch and soaring the entire ridge, Al told me the instructor offered him H-1 for $400. or H-2 for $800. :( :thumbdown: Other students got H-1 at the bunny hill, Al was way advanced beyond that point in training.

IMO, Al was mistreated badly by several of the instructors.

Looks like we lost this good pilot, but not to a fatal accident. IMO, because of part time and money hungry, a-hole instructors.
.........................

When to hook-in/verify hook-in is very important. However, an unproportional amount of time/topics have been devoted to that discussion here, because it is an easy topic to argue. As is weak links. And still no solid reccomendation/guidelines, just arguments. The forum is being dominated by tunnel vision. :crazy: Narrow mindedness. :thumbdown:

We need to devote discussion to other safety topics which are equally important. Also topics to grow US Hawks and the sport of HG. IMO, we are headed in the wrong direction, so far.

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