Home Forums Safety Incident Report: PG Tree Collision, April 15, 2020

  • Author
  • #8020
    David Webb
    General Member

    Incident Summary

    On April 15 @ 13:00, pilot was paragliding 100 ft above Crestline Launch and while initiating a turn,  took a significant collapse, causing an uncontrolled course change and dive. Before his course could be corrected and the collapse fixed, he collided with a tree directly behind Crestline Launch.


    The weather was clear and warm; Crestline Launch weather station was not reporting data to the website, but Marshall Peak Launch conditions reported 15mph SW wind at that time (so it should be assumed conditions at Crestline Launch were at least 20mph). Thermal activity was reported to be active.

    Emergency or Medical Response

    No emergency response called.


    No major injuries. Pilot reported an injured foot, but immediate medical attention was not warranted.

    Pilots Involved

    Paraglider Pilot (P2)

    Root Cause

    Thermal activity encountered in close proximity to the ground/launch.

    Proximate Cause

    Pilot was flying outside of established and agreed-upon flight restrictions for his rating (P2) – launching from Crestline and during thermic mid-day conditions.

    Corrective Action

    TBD: Further follow-up necessary with CSS board, pilot, and pilot’s instructor to determine appropriate corrective action.

    Gary Anderson
    General Member

    I respectfully disagree with the root cause and proximate causes, they should be reversed.

    The weather conditions are only a proximate cause because it was merely contributor to the accident. The root cause is the pilot. The pilot did not have the skills or experience to fly in those conditions. An experienced, skilled pilot could have flown safely and without incident under those same conditions.

    Gary Anderson
    General Member

    Crestline Blowback Pool

    Who can guess the number days before the next beginner/novice pilot gets blown back into the trees at Crestline?

    I say 87 days (I would guess less but it will be a few more weeks before we get back to regular flying)

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