NTSB Identification: LAX98FA235.
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Accident occurred Friday, July 17, 1998 in CALIFORNIA CITY, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/16/2001
Aircraft: PZL-Bielsko SZD 50-3, registration: N7215L
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The purpose of the flight was to familiarize the second pilot with a new type of glider that he had not previously flown. The first pilot was authorized to perform checkouts for the private flying club. The tow plane released the glider about 2 miles from the departure airport at 2,000 feet agl. The pilot of another glider reported that his attention was attracted to the accident aircraft about 15 minutes later, when the glider was about 4 miles distant, by the sun glistening off the wings as the aircraft spun in a nose low attitude. It completed approximately three turns before impacting the ground. Examination of the wreckage did not reveal any evidence of preimpact failure or malfunction of the aircraft.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

The failure of the first and/or second pilot to obtain and maintain control of the aircraft after stalling and entering a spin.

Full narrative available

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