NTSB Identification: IAD02LA005.
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Accident occurred Saturday, October 20, 2001 in Luxor, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/13/2003
Aircraft: Aerostar SA-60A, registration: N63069
Injuries: 4 Minor,1 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.

After an uneventful sightseeing flight, and during an approach to a landing, the balloon struck powerlines on the windward side of the landing zone. The pilot stated that the balloon got caught in a downdraft and that it was impossible to gain enough altitude to clear the wires. Each of the four passengers reported that there was no downdraft, and that the pilot did not activate the burners, take any remedial action, or issue any warnings prior to collision with the powerlines. After the accident, the pilot reported to fire department personnel that his fuel tanks were empty. Weather at the time included visual meteorological conditions and winds at 8 knots.

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

The pilot's inadequate fuel consumption calculations, which resulted in fuel exhaustion, and his subsequent inability to avoid power lines.

Full narrative available

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