Talk about a crash landing. While flying over Cleveland National Forest, Larry E. Hockensmith, a student glider pilot and licensed power pilot of almost 40 years, thought he was going in for a smooth landing. Unfortunately, he didn’t notice the nearby mailbox, which caught the right wing of the sailplane about 8 inches from the tip.
While many would be embarrassed about the guffaw, Hockensmith instead is choosing to own up to his mistake of lingering on the “lee-side of a ridge over rough terrain,” and to make the crash into a learning experience. Not only did his soaring club host a safety meeting where they watched the full 16-minute video and participated in discussions, but Hockensmith also posted the video to the YouTube community, asking them how they thought the differences between the training of a power pilot and glider pilot could have affected the outcome.
“Going into that turn I wanted to make sure I did not stall and added a bit too much airspeed,” Hockensmith explains. “Next time, hitting the spoilers, dropping airspeed and putting the skid down fast might produce a better outcome.”
If you found this interesting, the pilot will be posting more videos on this in the near future. You can click here to follow his YouTube account.