NTSB Identification: FTW02LA025.
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Accident occurred Sunday, October 28, 2001 in Albuquerque, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/20/2002
Aircraft: Cameron Balloon A-210, registration: N30606
Injuries: 1 Serious,7 Minor,3 Uninjured.

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

The pilot obtained a weather briefing prior to the hot-air balloon flight. The pilot reported that during the initial part of the flight, the wind was "light as forecasted." During the approach to landing, the pilot noticed the "winds starting to increase varying greatly in direction." The landing sites were "minimal," and she elected to land in a field. She briefed her passengers for a "steep approach/short field landing." As the balloon reached trees upwind from the landing site, the pilot pulled the deflation port, and warned her passengers that the landing was going to be "very hard." She added that as the balloon passed over the tree line, "it felt like we were being pushed to the ground at a greater descent than I expected." The balloon subsequently impacted the ground hard. The wind in the local area was reported as 120 degrees at 3 knots. The pilot reported the wind from 140 to 200 degrees at 15-20 knots.

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

the pilot's excessive descent rate during the landing approach, which resulted in a hard landing. Contributing factors were the high wind conditions and the lack of suitable terrain for the landing.

Full narrative available

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