On September 30, 2001, at 1300 eastern daylight time, a Let 33 glider, N3301L, was substantially damaged during landing at the Samuels Field Airport (BRY), Bardstown, Kentucky. The certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local personal flight that departed Samuels Field. No flight plan was filed, and the flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the pilot, he was planning on conducting three flights on the day of the accident. All of the flights were to be closed traffic, and the first flight was completed without incident. The pilot then departed on the second flight. After climbing above the traffic pattern altitude of 1,200 feet agl, the pilot released from the tow-plane. Once free, the pilot maneuvered the glider onto the downwind for runway 2, and radioed his position and intentions.
The pilot turned base approximately 700 feet agl, and made another radio announcement. About 500 feet agl, he turned final and recalls having a good "angle" to his aiming point. About 150 to 200 feet from the aiming point and 10 feet agl, the indicated airspeed was approximately 50 knots. The pilot then shifted his attention outside the glider for the final phase of the landing. When the glider was about 3 feet agl and "near" the flare point, it started to drop "sharply." The glider touched down hard nose first on the runway, and then bounced back into the air. The pilot was able to maintain directional control while the glider made several more bounces before rolling out and coming to a stop. He then exited the glider under his own power.
The pilot had approximately 300 hours of total flight experience, with 7 hours of that in the accident glider make and model. In addition, he had flown 2.5 hours in the accident glider within 30 days of the accident.
Examination of the glider by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed a compression wrinkle around the entire tailboom just forward of the horizontal and vertical stabilizers with part of the compression wrinkle extending along the top of the tailboom to the aft part of the cockpit. During the examination, no preimpact failures or malfunctions where identified.