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N52461 accident description

Minnesota map... Minnesota list
Crash location 44.844444°N, 92.943055°W
Nearest city Cottage Grove, MN
44.827745°N, 92.943822°W
1.2 miles away
Tail number N52461
Accident date 02 Jun 2003
Aircraft type Aerostar S-77A
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On June 2, 2003, at 2007 central daylight time, an Aerostar S-77A, N52461, operated by Wiederkehr Balloon International, Inc., experienced a hard landing after a steep approach to a field near Cottage Grove, Minnesota. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The pilot and seven passengers reported no injuries, and one passenger reported serious injuries. The 14 CFR Part 91 balloon ride flight was not operating on a flight plan. The local flight departed about 1900.

The pilot reported that he attempted to land in a hay field. A line was dropped to the chase crew, who were unsuccessful in slowing the balloon down. The crew released the line allowing the balloon to climb over obstacles. The pilot stated he deployed the parachute top vent to descend onto a baseball field. He deployed the aero chute vent to flare the balloon before touching down. The balloon bounced "three or four times" before coming to a stop in the upright position.

A passenger sustained a broken rib.

The ride balloon was undamaged.

NTSB Probable Cause

The inadequate touchdown by the pilot.

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