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Summary

Summary

The pilot obtained a weather forecast that indicated that the wind at 2000 feet, in the area of the proposed flight, would be a south-easterly at 20 knots, although the surface wind was a light southerly. After receiving a favourable wind report from the launch site, the pilot and passengers proceeded there, and the pilot carried out two helium balloon flights to check the conditions. Having satisfied himself that the conditions were suitable the passengers were briefed and the balloon was launched. After about twenty minutes the wind strength increased and the pilot decided to land the balloon. The passengers were rebriefed on the landing procedures and the burner pilot light was turned off in preparation for landing. On touchdown, in an estimated 20 knot wind, the basket tipped over and was dragged along the ground for 90 metres before coming to rest. Two of the occupants let go of the grab ropes on touchdown and were thrown from the basket on initial ground impact. During the ground slide two other passengers also let go of the grab ropes, the pilot managed to restrain one and keep her within the basket, however, the other passenger was thrown out of the basket.

 
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