Home Forums Safety Incident Report: PG vs Crestline Trees, December 27, 2020

  • Author
  • #10953
    David Webb
    General Member

    Incident Summary

    On December 27 late afternoon (16:00-17:00), PG pilot launched from Crestline, was performing low passes and foot drags on launch, and caught their glider in the trees behind launch while landing.


    Weather was cool and winds were light and steady. Between 16:00 and 17:00, Crestline Launch weather station reported W and SW winds @ 6-9mph.

    Emergency or Medical Response

    No emergency or medical response called or required.


    No injuries reported.

    Pilots Involved

    Paraglider pilot – no USHPA rating or CSS membership.

    Root Cause

    Pilot did not make a precise controlled landing while performing maneuvers on launch.

    Proximate Cause

    Pilot lacked the requisite skills, judgment, and rating to launch and perform low-to-the-ground maneuvers at Crestline.

    Corrective Action

    ??? I’m at a loss. This is a consistent and recurring theme with our site, with P2s and below (or completely unrated) pilots launching without supervision and an incident occurring. To date, there has been no collective will to correct this behavior so it’s pretty certain that this will continue.

    David Webb
    General Member

    Report updated.


    I am there quite often as you know…how can i help? Usually if there is a unknown Pilot try to ask them of their rating but of course just taking their word..and it always seems a bit weird…like there is a trust issue or somethin…. .and I am not there to police the place of course.  Maybe we can put up a sign showing minimum rating requirements so it is obvious?  Happy to help keep us all safe ! Let me know what your thinking


    David Webb
    General Member

    I don’t want to start any more arguments or cause any more issues than I may already have, but my hope was that all of the instructors would endeavor to impress upon their students the importance of respecting the flight requirements of the site and why that’s important. Hopefully, many or all of them are already doing that (totally likely, I’m not saying that they aren’t). Also, when it becomes known that a student is repeatedly violating those rules and requirements, that their instructor could step in and have a serious conversation with the student, in addition to letting the safety officer know that they are dealing with it.

    I never expected people on launch to play police, and it’s next to impossible to “card” everyone before they fly. I’m a believer in the effectiveness of just saying hello to new pilots (or pilots that we don’t recognize) – relevant information usually just falls out and makes it easier and more pleasant to guide that person in the right direction.

    I’m not in the hot seat anymore, but I’m confident John will have some good ideas on making some improvements in that area. Signage, possibly including a QR code to the site briefing for each launch (in addition to AJX) might be a good start for visiting pilots.

    The enthusiasm and support is super appreciated, Jeremy! Teamwork makes the dream work. :)

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