NTSB Identification: CEN12LA659
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 22, 2012 in Albuquerque, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/31/2013
Aircraft: LINDSTRAND BALLOONS 210S, registration: N608RR
Injuries: 1 Serious,8 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.
Before the flight, the pilot had difficulty getting the balloon envelope parachute vent to seat properly. Once the passengers were loaded, the vent seated, likely due to the weight of the occupants. During the flight, the pilot momentarily opened the parachute vent to allow the balloon to descend to a more desirable altitude. The pilot stated that the vent once again did not seat properly, leaving a 12- to 20-inch gap between the vent and the balloon envelope. He added heat to the envelope in an attempt to reseat the vent, but it did not reseat. The balloon continued to descend and contacted the terrain, seriously injuring one of the eight passengers. A postaccident examination and testing of the vent system did not reveal any reason why the parachute vent would not have operated normally during the flight.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The failure of the balloon envelope parachute vent to properly seat, which resulted in the uncontrolled descent of the balloon. The reason the vent did not properly seat during the accident flight could not be determined because the vent operated properly during examination and testing. Full narrative available
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