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Aviation Accident

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NTSB Identification: GAA19CA208
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, April 15, 2019 in Elizabeth, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/06/2019
Aircraft: AIRFRAMES UNLIMITED OUTLAW, registration: N5622D
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot of the powered parachute reported that, during takeoff from a hayfield, the wind was from the southwest at 6 mph and that he departed to the southwest. He added that, once airborne, the climb rate was "slower than normal," and he began a 180° left turn. On the downwind, the climb rate reduced to zero, and the powered parachute started descending. He realized he did not have enough altitude to complete the 180° turn. The powered parachute impacted the top rail of a fence, and the pilot subsequently shut the magnetos off. The airplane then impacted a second fence and the ground.
The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the powered parachute that would have precluded normal operation.
The automated weather observation station located about 16 miles northwest of the accident site reported that, about 7 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 020° at 9 knots. The pilot reported that the wind was from 245° at 6 knots and that the density altitude was "6,800+" ft.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
  • The pilot's failure to maintain adequate airspeed and his subsequent decision to initiate a turn, which resulted in the powered parachute’s descent and impact with a fence.