Sunday, August 27, 2017

Unregistered Tukan Trike: Fatal accident occurred August 27, 2017 in Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Louisville, Kentucky

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: ERA17LA297
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 27, 2017 in Nicholasville, KY
Aircraft: Tukan Trike, registration: Unreg
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On August 27, 2017, about 1330 eastern daylight time, an unregistered, amateur-built, Tukan Trike, collided with terrain during takeoff in Nicholasville, Kentucky. The two-place, weight shift-control special light-sport aircraft was substantially damaged. The non-certificated pilot was fatally injured. Day, visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and no flight plan was filed for the local, personal flight. The flight was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91.

According to a witness, the pilot purchased the aircraft last fall, and the accident flight was the pilot's first flight. He observed the aircraft take off from a grass field and it did not appear the pilot gained enough airspeed or altitude. The aircraft climbed to about 25 ft above the ground, then veered left and impacted a dumpster. He reported the engine ran "fine" during the takeoff.

Examination of the aircraft by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed it was equipped with a second seat and a NorthWing M-Pulse 2 wing. The aircraft was also equipped with a 12-gallon fuel tank on a plywood board that was underneath the passenger seat.

The fuselage came to rest nose low on its left side. Except for some structural tube bending, it remained largely intact. The wing remained attached to the main structure and was heavily damaged.

The aircraft was equipped with a Rotax 447, two-stroke, 40-horsepower engine. A Rotax placard on the engine stated, "This engine is for use in experimental and ultralight uncertified aircraft only." According to an FAA inspector, the accident aircraft, as equipped did not meet the requirements contained in 14 CFR Part 103 to be considered an Ultralight Vehicle.

No maintenance records or pilot logbooks were located. A search of FAA airman records revealed that the pilot did not hold a pilot's license. His most recent FAA third-class medical certificate was issued in conjunction with a student pilot certificate on February 23, 1989. He reported 40 total hours of flight experience at that time.

Weather reported at the Blue Grass Airport (LEX), Lexington, Kentucky, about 9 miles north of the accident site, included variable winds at 3 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, clear skies, temperature 26° C, dew point 15° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.13 inches of mercury.

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. (WTVQ) – A Jessamine County man is dead after a hang gliding accident this afternoon.

The man crashed at Rosenwald Dunbar Elementary, right off Wilmore Road.

According to the Jessamine County Coroner, 56-year-old John Collins was piloting his hang glider when he had to make an emergency landing.

The coroner says he does not believe the crash was caused by mechanical issues. He says Collins did not have enough altitude to keep the glider in the air.

“There was a wind shift possible, according to a witness,” said Jessamine County Coroner Michael Hughes. “One wing dipped low and he more or less lost control and was trying to put it on the ground when he struck the dumpster.”

Hughes says he spoke with family members who say Collins was an avid pilot.

“Flying was apparently his passion and he was trying to spend the afternoon doing what he loved and it just turned into a horrible tragedy,” said Hughes.

Hughes says Collins died of blunt force trauma from hitting the dumpster. However, he says he does not know that the outcome would have been any different had the dumpster not been there.

Hughes says Collins was a father to three Jessamine County teens.

The coroner says Collin’s family has requested that an autopsy not be performed since the cause of death is already known.

JESSAMINE COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - 56-year-old John Collins died on Sunday when his the ultralight plane went down near Rosenwald Dunbar Elementary School in Jessamine County. The coroner says the crash happened when one of Collins' wings dipped low and that he possibly didn't have enough altitude to correct it.

Friends say Collins loved flying for sport, but his passions also included working with young people. Collins was very active at West Jessamine HIgh School with the soccer team.

"He told me, that there is no other feeling; that being up in the air, soaring through the air.”

Leo Labrillazo is the principal of Hogsett Elementary School in Danville. He says Collins was not only a good friend to him but many others as well.

"For me, and I think our community, I think the legacy that John is going to leave is going to be one of just self-less giving. When I say that he wouldn't think twice of serving or doing, that is not an understatement," Labrillazo said.

“I have seen him sponsor kids so that they could take part in an activity when they would not normally have that.”

Collins's friends are planning a moment of silence at the next West Jessamine soccer game in his memory.

A public visitation service is scheduled for Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Clark Legacy Center in Brannon Crossing. His funeral service will follow.

Nicholasville Police are still investigating the crash; The FAA does not regulate ultralight aircraft.

Story and video:

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - One man is dead after the ultralight glider he was flying crashed.

It happened around noon Sunday near Rosenwald Dunbar Elementary School, off Wilmore Road in Jessamine County.

Police say the man was dead when they got to the scene.

Jessamine County Coroner Michael Hughes identified the victim as John Collins, 55, of Jessamine County.

The coroner says one of Collins' wings dipped low and when he tried to land he crashed into a dumpster.

"The gentleman was just out trying to enjoy the day with his recently purchased ultralight and things just went wrong for him," Hughes said. "It went tragically wrong."

Story and video ➤ 

A man died in Jessamine County Sunday when the glider that he was flying crashed, said Jessamine County Deputy Coroner Len Kirschbaum.

The accident that killed John Collins, of Nicholasville, 55, happened at 12:15 p.m. Sunday near Rosenwald Dunbar Elementary School, off Wilmore Road in Jessamine County.

Michael Hughes, Jessamine County coroner, said Collins crashed into a dumpster behind the school and was probably killed instantly.

Hughes said Collins was flying a ultralight trike, which is a type of motorized hang glider steered by shifting weight.

Original article can be found here ➤

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