LAX95LA184
LAX95LA184

On May 10, 1995, at 1530 Hawaii standard time, a Schweizer SGS 2-33A glider, N7768S, sustained substantial damage after colliding with a ridge while maneuvering near a ridge line at Honolulu, Hawaii. The glider was owned and operated by Soar Hawaii, Ltd., and was rented by the pilot for a local personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the operation. The certificated commercial pilot sustained minor injuries. The flight originated from Dillingham Airfield at 1521 on the day of the accident.

The pilot said that after being towed to an altitude of 1,000 feet msl he was able to climb an additional 100 feet. He stated that about 5 minutes later he encountered an area which was not generating any lift and decided to turn back toward the airport. While flying an upwind course, which was in close proximity and nearly parallel to the north side of a nearby ridge line, the glider encountered an unexpected downdraft. Unable to maneuver out of the condition, the glider was forced down, impacting steep, rocky terrain at approximately 700 feet msl.

After impact, the glider slid down the face of the ridge until coming to rest against a tree. The pilot was able to egress the glider without assistance. He reported that the prevailing winds at the accident site were gusting from the southeast.

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