NTSB Identification: SEA04LA119
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, June 28, 2004 in Wolf Point, MT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/28/2004
Aircraft: APCO Powered Parachute, registration: None
Injuries: 2 Fatal.
NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
A family member said the pilot had previously mentioned to her that there was a way to make the airplane turn quicker by pulling harder on some of the cables that control the parachute. On the flight prior to the accident she didn't feel comfortable with some of the turns the pilot was making and wanted him to land. While watching the next flight, estimated to be 500 feet above the ground, she observed the aircraft make some tight turns and lose altitude before impacting the ground and erupt into flames. An instructor pilot, who had only given the pilot ground instruction on how to fly the aircraft, had previously advised the pilot that he needed more instruction before he would be able to fly the airplane. The instructor subsequently discovered that the pilot had been flying the plane since he first purchased it. The instructor again advised the pilot that he needed to get additional instruction and the pilot agreed; however, this never happened. Shortly after the accident occurred a family member told the instructor that the pilot had given her a ride and was making sharp turns with the airplane, which she felt was the cause of the accident. The instructor said that pulling in too much steering line can collapse the side of the parachute the line is on. The instructor believed the pilot was unable to re-inflate the parachute before impacting the ground after the steering lines became entangled.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's loss of control as a result of trying a low altitude quick turning maneuver. A factor was the pilot's lack of experience in the aircraft. Full narrative available
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