NTSB Identification: LAX00LA033.
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Accident occurred Saturday, November 13, 1999 in PHOENIX, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/09/2001
Aircraft: Raven RX-7, registration: N4046M
Injuries: 1 Serious,2 Minor.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

Liftoff and initial stages of the flight were uneventful. As the flight proceeded, the balloon approached a steep-sided mountain and the pilot initiated a climb. He realized he was not going to clear the mountain and secured the heat prior to colliding with the ground. The balloon contacted the ground near the mountain crest, turning the gondola on its side. The balloon drifted off the other side of the mountain, the pilot reapplied heat, and flew several miles before completing an uneventful landing. The gondola sustained substantial damage and one passenger suffered a fractured leg.

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

The pilot's delay in initiating a climb and his subsequent failure to attain and maintain clearance from mountainous terrain.

Full narrative available

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