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Very close call, propellor accident handing paramo

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Pilot Details

Age: 53
Weight: 182
Gender:
Highest rating held at the time of the incident:
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Gear Details

Wing Brand:
Model: N/A
Size:
Paramotor Frame: brand not important. Electric start and hand start, no clutch. with

Incident Details

March 27, 2017
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Type of Incident
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Experienced USPPA Instructor Administrator was the person involved in this incident. Ironically he was in the midst of conducting the first practical exercise as part of an Instructor Certification Clinic. The theme of the exercise was for each participant to demonstrate how to safely start their own unit. When it came time for the Instructor Administrator’s turn, he started by trying to get his unit into position. Another unit used previously was in the way and the Instructor Admin started to handle it to move it out of his way. He grabbed the unit with his left hand on the main top frame tubing and his right hand on the upper right outside cage rim with hand closed around it. The unit unexpectedly started to spin as the handler (Instructor Admin) somehow must have pushed the start button by mistake or unawareness. Only luck prevented the prop from striking his hand around the cage rim, and more luck prevented the unit from starting up and possibly striking it harder or worst getting out of control since starting it was not what was planned and all others around it not expecting it to do much more than get moved to the side. It scared the crap out of the Instructor Administrator and the others. The lesson learned is NOT to handle somebody else unit without asking them first. Don’t handle it at all if you aren’t familiar with the unit. In this case the unit had NO secondary ON/OFF switch and the owner had not removed the battery connector to disengage the start button (a bit tougher to do on his particular unit as explained by the owner afterwards). Manufacturers are asked to install secondary ON/OFF switches on all electric start units they fabricate. For individual owners that have past models from any brand that don’t have such switches please consider a well thought out and implemented installation of such a switch (run it by the brand if they are still active for their suggestions). Owners of electric start units are asked to immediately switch OFF their secondary ON/OFF switch when their units are not to be used for flight (or disengage their battery if such a switch has not been installed yet). This also demonstrates the need for First Aid trained people to be at a site ready to act in case of emergency. It can happen unexpectedly. This was not a situation to be taken lightly. It could have turned UGLY without luck.

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