Wed, Jan 23, 2008
Plane Suffered Probable Control Surface Failure
A pilot experiencing a probable
control surface failure deployed a Ballistic Recovery Systems whole
aircraft parachute January 5, 2008 in Laurel, MD just north of
Washington, DC. The aircraft and passenger were returned safely to
the earth, becoming the 208th documented life saved by a BRS
emergency parachute system.
"The aircraft rolled over on its back and headed straight down,"
said pilot Patrick Dean. He deployed the BRS parachute just a few
hundred feet above the ground. The aircraft landed in the trees and
Dean was helped from the cockpit by witnesses. He suffered a cut on
his nose and minor bumps and bruises.
"The BRS system absolutely, positively saved my life!" Dean
said. "There is nothing else that could have slowed me down enough
to have kept me from hitting the ground at terminal velocity."
Dean was flying a Slipstream Genesis, a fabric and fiberglass
two-seater he had built himself. The aircraft was recently
inspected by the FAA and deemed to be airworthy.
During the construction process, his wife specifically asked him
to add a BRS parachute to the design. After the accident, she
delivered a short, but emotional message to the employees of
"Thank you very, very much for making these parachutes!" she
Dean says his wife is also encouraging him to continue flying...
but especially now, only with a BRS parachute. "She wants me to
keep doing the things I love," Dean said of his wife.
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