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Collision with Terrain/Obstruction on Ground

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Type of Injury:

Pilot Details

Age: 0
Weight: 180
Gender:
Highest rating held at the time of the incident:
Pilot experience level:

Gear Details

Wing Brand:
Model: Macpara Muse 28M DHV 1
Size:
Paramotor Frame: Sky Cruiser 100 CC Vitorazzi Abut 50 Lbs. with

Incident Details

January 1, 2006
Location of the incident:
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Type of Incident
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Being fairly new to the sport I had done most of my flying at the beach, until one sunny Saturday an offshore wind forced me to search inland to get my fix. My friend and I stumbled upon the perfect LZ which would have more than accommodated a takeoff and landing if we weren’t sharing it with some R/C airplane enthusiasts. In speaking with them we had reached an agreement to stay out of each others way, which at that time cut our LZ in half making me a little nervous.

I would like to inject here that at this time we should have packed up and found another spot, but I was anxious to get into the air before the thermals started kicking up, so I unloaded and started to set up.

Watching the windsock I laid out my wing facing into the wind for a reverse launch. I hooked in, popped my wing up, and turned to start my takeoff, all the while running and looking up at my wing. In paying too much attention to what my wing was doing i neglected to notice that i was running about 45 degrees out of the wind which made for a long take off run and not much lift by the time i got off the ground, not to mention the fact that I was now headed straight for a clump of brush about 10 ft high at the edge of the field. For anyone whose ever been in this situation, I can testify to that fleeting thought of (i can clear that if i just squeeze the already exhausted throttle just a little harder. ) luckily for me just then my common sense kicked in, I killed the motor and braced for what I thought was going to be a very hard impact but the shrub was a lot more forgiving than I thought it would be. What was not forgiving was the barbed wire fence that was in the middle of all of that brush. I raked my calves on the fence and somehow strained a groin muscle – that happened after the landing and was the worst of my injuries.

Being pretty ticked off and having a hard time getting out of that mess i unbuckled myself and proceeded to get out of my harness by using the muffler as a resting place for my forearm to lift myself out. Even though I heard the sizzling, it took a couple of seconds for my brain to process what was actually going on. It hurt, it took a month to heal, and I will have a scar to remind me of what not to do next time.

Lessons learned:

#1 Don’t sacrifice safety if the conditions aren’t right, find another spot or fly another day.

#2 When in a takeoff run: while it may be important to see what your wing is doing it is equally important to know where you are going, so take a peek.

#3 If your going to have a bad landing , kill the motor. It saved me a lot of damage.

#4 Know your LZ: if I would have tried to clear the brush and caught the top of it I would have gone down in a lake that was just on the other side of the fence.

#5 Last but not least: don’t touch a hot muffler, it will burn you!

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