Monday, December 17, 2018

Detroit Flying Cars WD-1, N112SD: Accident occurred December 14, 2018 at Willow Run Airport (KYIP), Detroit, Michigan

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; East Michigan

During taxi run aircraft became airborne and crashed.

Date: 14-DEC-18

Time: 18:05:00Z
Regis#: N112SD
Aircraft Model: WD 1
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: SERIOUS
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: TAXI (TXI)
Operation: 91

Sanjay Dhall


An experimental "flying car" aircraft crashed on Friday during a test run at Willow Run Airport, injuring the male pilot and prompting an investigation, authorities said.

The owner of the hybrid vehicle was performing a high-speed taxi test at about 1:15 p.m. when it accidentally went airborne and crashed, according to a statement from the airport authority.

"By all indications, this appears to be an accident," said spokesperson Erica Donerson.

Paramedics from the Wayne County Airport Authority Fire Department transported the pilot, Sanjay Dhall, to the University of Michigan, confirmed his business partner David Han.

Dhall is in stable condition and is "alert and aware," Han said on Saturday evening.

"He is in good spirits, and we pray along with his family for a speedy healing and recovery," Han said.

The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the incident.

A local engineer and pilot, Dhall founded Detroit Flying Cars to create an aircraft that can also be operated as a car. Although Friday's test run ended with the crash, Han said that the team still achieved a milestone: The accident came after two successful tests, and during the third, the aircraft transitioned to "prepare for flight" mode.

But only the front two wheels were supposed to come off the ground.

“It actually took flight, which was more than what he had planned for," Han said.

After Dhall recovers, the team will repair and improve the prototype for more tests. The incident was unexpected, Han said, but will also lead to "tremendous improvements" in future prototyping.

The two-seat vehicle was handcrafted mostly from carbon fiber, the Free Press reported last year, with a propeller on the back and a hybrid engine.

"I've always loved to design wacky things, strange things," Dhall said in the July 2017 article. "I just find that there is uniqueness buried in things that don’t meet the convention. If you make something wacky, there could be a hidden secret that you could unlock."

Original article can be found here ➤