NTSB Identification: FTW01LA179.
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Accident occurred Sunday, August 12, 2001 in Uvalde, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/20/2002
Aircraft: PDPS PZL-Bielsko SZD-55-1, registration: N55VW
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The commercial pilot was completing the third leg of a soaring 300 km triangle. The glider owner, who was in contact with the pilot via radio, reported that the pilot stated he had the field in sight approximately 8 miles from the airport. The glider entered the traffic pattern for runway 15 and was turning base when the owner observed it enter a spin. A witness reported that the glider banked, "appeared to have stalled, and spiraled counter-clockwise" in a nose low attitude into the ground. Another witness, located approximately a block from the accident site, stated that she "looked up and saw the glider spinning counter clockwise very fast and falling nose first." The glider impacted the ground and came to rest approximately 1/4 mile from the approach end of runway. The pilot had accumulated approximately 270 total glider flight hours and 5 flight hours in the same make and model as the accident aircraft. No pre-impact anomalies were noted with the glider during the examination.

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

the pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control during the base turn, which resulted in an inadvertant stall/spin.

Full narrative available

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