NTSB Identification: ERA14LA199
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, April 13, 2014 in Bunn, NC
Aircraft: AIRCRAFT INDUSTRIES A.S. L33 SOLO, registration: N318BA
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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

On April 13, 2014, about 1540 eastern daylight time (EDT), an Aircraft Industries A.S. (formerly LET Aeronautical Works) L33 SOLO glider, N318BA, collided with terrain approximately 400 feet north-northeast of Crooked Creek Airport (7NC5), Bunn, North Carolina. The private pilot sustained serious injuries, and the glider was substantially damaged. The glider was registered to and operated by North Carolina Soaring Association, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from 7NC5 about 1510 EDT.

The pilot was towed aloft from runway 22 and released at approximately 2,000 feet mean sea level at a point approximately just over 1 mile northwest of 7NC5. The tow plane returned to 7NC5 and landed, then shortly thereafter, the tow plane pilot stated that the accident pilot reported that he was returning to 7NC5. The tow plane pilot asked him if he wanted another tow aloft since the flight was a short duration and he replied affirmative.

Witnesses who were on 7NC5 reported hearing the pilot announce that he was entering the traffic pattern for a right downwind for runway 22. The witnesses looked towards that direction and noted the glider was abeam the approach end of runway 22 but noted the glider appeared to be low. The glider turned onto base leg where trees obscured one witnesses view; however, another witness reported seeing the glider through the trees and observed the glider in a nose-low angle greater than 50 degrees, then observed what appeared to be the wings rotate as if in a ground loop but at a higher angle. The witnesses heard an impact and ran to the accident site. On arrival they noted the pilot was being attended to by homeowners that lived near the airport. Fire rescue responded and the pilot was transported by ambulance to a nearby fire station, and then was airlifted to a hospital for treatment of his injuries.

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