DG505 Elan Orion, BGA 4432 JDN
The accident occurred during a solo flight, the purpose of which was to convert an experienced glider pilot on to type. On approach, the glider was seen to enter a steep dive and strike the ground, seriously injuring the pilot. The dive was caused by the failure of a piece of electric cable being used to restrain the hinged rear cockpit headrest. This allowed the headrest to fall forward, restricting the rearward travel of the rear cockpit control column resulting in a loss of control. The electrical cable had been fitted as a replacement for the original nylon cord, installed by the manufacturer, which had become damaged. Two safety recommendations have been made.
Published 10 December 2014