Please see below a list of recent MRFI’s reported –  Click here to report new incident

19/021 01-Sep Duo Discus Private CONFLICT On approach from the south 04 just over the trees and boundary a car crossed on the high ridge from the launch point towards the Club House. Fortunately P1 was able to close the brakes to clear the vehicle and land long.

CFI noted: When operating from the northern end its natural to travel up the side of the field, there is good visibility, when you cross the approach you can duck down the slope into the lee of the hill and transit without risk to approaching gliders.
It’s very different at the southern end. There is a pinch point by the road, the trees restrict visibility, and there is a lot of traffic between the private hangars and the clubhouse.

Safety Officer noted: There is a much increased risk of conflict when operating from the southern end. At the southern end drivers and pedestrians can reduce that risk by maintaining a good look out and going around rather than across the landing area.

19/022 07-Sep DG505 Club LDG The instructor prompted the student for pre-circuit checks, ‘what do we need to do now?’, and he did the checks and lowered the undercarriage. Approach had to be delayed to allow another glider to land first.  When the glider landed  the undercarriage collapsed.  P1 commented: “It can’t have been properly locked down.    I think I watched the handle going forward and it looked ok, but …”
Lesson learnt: always independently check that the gear is down and properly locked.
19/023 08-Sep N/R N/R CONFLICT Glider returning from XC joined normal circuit for 04, calling before starting downwind leg.  Just before the call heard a glider calling 2 minutes, and on downwind leg saw a competition finish to the east.  Lost sight of other glider until finishing base leg the saw it on base leg, starting approach close in and lower; landing to left side of  normal landing area, but still on it.  After touchdown it deviated to the right, in front of reporter who was able with difficulty to deviate to the left to avoid him at low level.  Second glider did not hear reporter’s downwind call or see him.

Reporter commented: I should have radioed that I was behind him on the approach, but I assumed he would know of my position following my radio call.

19/024 01-Sep N/R N/R Ground A buggy was seen to release from the glider they were towing but then drove under the wing of another glider. The beacon pole on the buggy hit the leading edge of the wing.  No damage was done.

Safety officer comment: This appears to be a simple matter of not paying attention. PLEASE be very careful when driving vehicles around people or gliders. Make sure you drive at an appropriate speed, especially with winter coming – grass will be long and wet soon, with increased risk of skidding if you arrive too fast or turn suddenly. ALWAYS make sure you have enough space to go around aircraft or gliders, if you aren’t certain then STOP!

19/025 08-Sep N/A Club CONFLICT Reporter observed that gliders were left obstructing the landing area causing potential issues for other landing gliders.

Safety officer comment: Please always vacate the landing area as quickly as you can to avoid causing problems for other landing gliders. With the ridge season approaching this takes on added importance given the risk of mass landings on busy days.

19/026 08-Sep LS4 Club Launch P1 reported that the wing runner held the wingtip at the leading edge causing the glider to rotate as it accelerated and noted that the wing runner told him he hadn’t been briefed on the correct method.

Safety officer comment: The club is reviewing ground handling training for new members. In the meantime, if you see someone helping but not yet competent please get involved and ensure that the job is done properly.

19/027 20-Sep DG505 Club Circuit P1 was flying a TL on a ‘difficult day’  (easterly wind, blue conditions) and misjudged conditions resulting in a marginal circuit and approach.
CFI comments:  contributory factors are:
– A difficult day, marginal for conducting trial lessons
– Trying to give value for money by stretching the flight, and letting the pupil do the flying
– A lapse in situational awareness
– An underestimate of the strength of the wind
All leading to a marginal approach.

The CFI reminded all instructors that the standard 2,500′ TL is advertised as lasting 15 to 20 minutes, to allay worries about a TL lasting ‘only’ 18 minutes (key factor in this incident); reinforced the message that trial lessons should not be conducted in difficult conditions; and reminded tuggies and instructors to release upwind, especially on strong wind days.

Apart from the potential problem of acquiring a reputation for giving poor value for money, the safety issue is placing a burden on the BIs to stretch the flight to avoid customer dissatisfaction. There is concern that a short TL (less than 15 mins) means the BI may have a dissatisfied customer to deal with. We used to fly punters again if the flight was short for some reason. How we deal with dissatisfied customers is under discussion with the committee.

19/028 21-Sep DG505
Club Launch On a 3000ft aerotow, the glider initiated a climbing turn before confirming the tow rope was released. The tug was pulled into an unusual attitude, and the tug pilot was unable to reach the release. The glider pilot then released the tow rope and the tug recovered safely without damage.

Safety officer comment: This incident is the subject of a formal INCIDENT REPORT to the BGA. Further actions to follow.

All glider pilots please note – the tug pilot is reliant on the glider not pulling the tail up. AT LOW LEVEL THE TUG MAY NOT RECOVER.

19/029 18-Sep LS4 Club CONFLICT After soaring flight returned to land after radio call LH circuit to 04. Halfway along base leg a T/L visitor started crossing the field from corner towards launch point. Forced to take avoiding action.

Safety Officer comment: We MUST ensure the safety of our visitors, and our airfield users by ensuring that all visitors are properly briefed, and if necessary, escorted, when moving about the airfield.

19/030 05-Oct N/R N/R CONFLICT P1 reported obstructed landing area forcing a ‘long’ landing increased risk of a downhill run. Recommended ground crew are encouraged to quickly clear landed gliders.

Safety officer comment: Please always vacate the landing area as quickly as you can to avoid causing problems for other landing gliders. With the ridge season approaching this takes on added importance given the risk of mass landings on busy days.
NOTE: second incident of this nature reported in 4 weeks.

19/031 05-Oct K21
Club Other Reporter observed that club gliders were at risk of damage due to unclear direction on correctly fitting batteries.

Safety officer comment: Technical team are reviewing.

MRFI August 2019
MRFI September 2019