The pilot and passenger departed on a personal flight and flew for 30-40 minutes during which the pilot performed a simulated "pilot light failure" emergency procedure. The pilot performed the simulation so as to "teach" the passenger the procedure. The pilot light was reportedly not extinguished during or after the simulation. Following the simulation, the pilot began a stair step climb for the approach to a landing area during which the pilot light extinguished at the last stop of the climb. The pilot said he had three sources of ignition aboard: a flint spark provided by the balloon manufacturer, a grill lighter, and a wind proof grill lighter. He could not relight the pilot light after three attempts, and also attempted to light fuel from the whisper and blast valves. The pilot stated that fuel emanated from these valves during the relight attempts. There was about 25 gallons of fuel remaining at the time of the accident. The pilot then pulled the "red line or deflation line" to deflate the balloon. The balloon descended into 180 foot high power lines and caught fire, which consumed the basket and envelope. The pilot was uninjured, and the passenger received minor injuries. The pilot accumulated a total flight time of 30 hours in lighter than air aircraft of which 15 hours were in the accident make and model. He last performed a "pilot light failure" emergency procedure about 5 months prior to the accident flight.

The burner was reported as part number CB391A, serial number 371
The master tank was reported as part number CB 250A, serial number 409595
The basket was reported as part number CB 301B-3, serial number 7036

Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsis
Return to Query Page