Friday, January 13, 2017

Cameron A315, Napa Valley Balloons Inc., N69520: Accident occurred November 14, 2016 in Winters, Yolo County, California (and) Incident occurred May 17, 2016 in Napa County, California

Docket And Docket Items - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms 

Napa Valley Balloons Inc: http://registry.faa.gov/N69520

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Sacramento FSDO-25


Aviation Accident Factual Report -   National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

NTSB Identification: GAA17CA082
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, November 14, 2016 in Winters, CA
Aircraft: CAMERON A315, registration: N69520
Injuries: 1 Serious, 14 Uninjured.

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 a balloon reported that while aloft he observed the wind increase to about 10 miles per hour, so he briefed his passengers on how to brace for a "high wind landing" and possible basket tip-over. The pilot further reported that he descended to about 3 feet above ground, and once over the target landing area he "shut off [the] fuel tanks and burners then pulled the smart vent (rapid deflation valve)." Subsequently, on touch down the basket bounced once and skidded about 15 to 20 yards before stopping with the basket tipping over on its side.

The pilot reported that he secured the basket and while the passengers were exiting the basket, his ground crew informed him that a passenger had injured her ankle. According to the pilot, the injured passenger did not speak English as her first language and he was unsure if she braced appropriately for the landing or if she sustained the serious injury while exiting the basket. The pilot reported that another passenger informed him that the passenger sustained the injury while she was exiting the basket. 

The pilot did not report any preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures with the balloon that would have precluded normal operation.

Date:  17-MAY-16
Time:  14:45:00Z
Regis#:  N69520
Aircraft Make:  CAMERON
Aircraft Model:  A315
Event Type:  Incident
Damage:  None
Activity:  Sightseeing
Flight Phase:  LANDING (LDG)
City:  NAPA
State:  California

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Sacramento FSDO-25

HOT AIR BALLOON FORCE LANDED ON A LEVY 3 MILES FROM THE AIRPORT, PERSONS ON BOARD WERE RETRIEVED BY HELICOPTER, NO INJURIES, NO DAMAGE, NAPA, CALIFORNIA. 



NAPA (KPIX 5) – Tourists who were taking in the scenic Napa Valley on a hot air balloon ride Tuesday had their journey turn into a rescue mission, when the balloon went off course and made an emergency landing near the Napa River.

“They got a nice balloon ride and a free helicopter ride,” CHP flight officer Tom Lipsey told KPIX 5.

Lipsey said as CHP helicopters were out training, he noticed something colorful from the flight hanger.

“We looked over there, saw a hot air balloon that was pretty far south of where we normally see them,” he recalled.

A helicopter found the balloon on a remote levee, miles off course, near the Napa River. The pilot told Lipsey he didn’t have enough fuel to lift off.

“The winds were kind of shifting all over as we were landing, so I think it was just a really strange day for winds and maybe caught them off guard,” Lipsey said.

The balloon belongs to Napa Valley Balloon Inc. Representatives told KPIX 5 the people on the balloon ride were tourists that were part of a Robert Mondavi wine tasting trip.

The helicopter had to make multiple trips to rescue the 16 tourists and the pilot.

One of the tourists posted on Instagram a selfie from the chopper.

“I know they were taking a lot of selfies and videos of us flying over there so I am sure they got good memories there,” Lipsey said.

Napa Valley Balloon Inc. said the strong winds forced their pilot to land on the levee, but no one was ever in danger.

Story and video:  http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com



NAPA, California -- Tourists who were taking in the scenic Napa Valley on a hot air balloon ride Tuesday had their journey turn into a rescue mission when the balloon went off course and made an emergency landing near the Napa River, CBS San Francisco reported.

"They got a nice balloon ride and a free helicopter ride," California Highway Patrol flight officer Tom Lipsey told CBS SF.

Lipsey said as CHP helicopters were out training, he noticed something colorful from the flight hanger.

"We looked over there, saw a hot air balloon that was pretty far south of where we normally see them," he recalled.

A helicopter found the balloon on a remote levee, miles off course, near the Napa River. The pilot told Lipsey he didn't have enough fuel to lift off.

"The winds were kind of shifting all over as we were landing, so I think it was just a really strange day for winds and maybe caught them off guard," Lipsey said.

The balloon belongs to Napa Valley Balloon Inc. Representatives told CBS SF the people on the balloon ride were tourists that were part of a Robert Mondavi wine tasting trip.

The helicopter had to make multiple trips to rescue the 16 tourists and the pilot.

One of the tourists posted on Instagram a selfie from the chopper.

"I know they were taking a lot of selfies and videos of us flying over there so I am sure they got good memories there," Lipsey said.

Napa Valley Balloon Inc. said the strong winds forced their pilot to land on the levee, but no one was ever in danger.

Story and video:  http://www.cbsnews.com

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