Saturday, June 08, 2019

Ground Handling Event: Balloon Works, Firefly 8B-15, N3282P, accident occurred July 14, 2017 in Murfreesboro, Rutherford County, Tennessee

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Nashville, Tennessee

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Murfreesboro, TN
Accident Number: ERA17LA243
Date & Time: 07/14/2017, 1930 CDT
Registration: N3282P
Aircraft Damage: None
Defining Event: Ground handling event
Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Aerial Observation - Sightseeing 

On July 14, 2017, about 1930 central daylight time, a Balloon Works, Firefly 8B-15, N3282P, ascended unintentionally after landing near Murfreesboro, Tennessee. The commercial pilot was not injured and one passenger was seriously injured. The commercial sightseeing flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight.

According to the pilot, after a successful flight, all three passengers exited the gondola and were assisting the pilot in securing the balloon. As they were holding on to the maneuvering handles the balloon began to ascend. The pilot directed everyone to "let go" but one of the passengers continued to hold on to the maneuvering handles. As the gondola ascended the passenger was carried about 30 ft into the air, before letting go and falling to the ground. The pilot regained control of the balloon and landed. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Airline Transport; Commercial
Age: 53, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land
Seat Occupied: None
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Balloon
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 02/22/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 07/30/2017
Flight Time:  12300 hours (Total, all aircraft), 301 hours (Total, this make and model), 6600 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 290 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 90 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: BALLOON WORKS
Registration: N3282P
Aircraft Category: Balloon
Year of Manufacture:
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Balloon
Serial Number: F8B-520
Landing Gear Type:
Seats: 0
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/01/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1900 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Airframe Total Time: 309 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer:
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series:
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power:
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: MQY, 543 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1938 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 319°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 4 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 280°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.1 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 23°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Murfreesboro, TN
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Murfreesboro, TN
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1900 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class E 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: None
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 35.845556, -86.390278 (est)

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