NTSB Identification: WPR13FA300
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 29, 2013 in Jacumba, CA
Aircraft: ALLSTAR PZL GLIDER SZD-54-2 PERKOZ, registration: N684SD
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On June 29, 2013, at 1229 Pacific daylight time, an Allstar PZL Glider: SZD-54-2 PERKOZ, N684SD, collided with the ground during a winch launch at Jacumba Airport, Jacumba, California. The glider was registered to, and operated by, Associated Glider Clubs of Southern California, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The private pilot and airline transport pilot rated passenger sustained fatal injuries. The glider sustained substantial damaged during the accident sequence. The local flight departed Jacumba, at 1228. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed.

The Vice President of the glider club reported that he flew the glider earlier in the day with the same passenger who was on board for the accident. They utilized the winch for the launch, and the takeoff and flight were uneventful, with the glider performing normally.

For the accident flight, the glider was towed back to the launch position at the east end of runway 25, and connected to the towline. Due to the light wind and minimal lift conditions, the pilot’s intention was to perform a flight within the immediate confines of the airport.

Multiple witnesses observed the launch sequence, reporting that the ground roll, rotation, and initial climb were uneventful. At an altitude of between 150 and 300 feet agl, the towline released from the glider; it then banked to the right, the nose dropped, and the glider began a right spin followed by a nose-down collision with the ground.

The glider came to rest about 1,200 feet beyond the initial launch position, on the adjacent apron, just north of the runway. The entire cabin area was fragmented through to the wing leading edges. Both wings remained attached at the aft fuselage, with the right wing sustaining upward bending damage at the tip.

According to pilots familiar with the winch system, the standard procedure is for the pilot to release the towline once the glider has reached an altitude of between 1,000 and 1,600 feet agl.

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