Glider crashes; pilot taken to Waimea hospital


A pilot in a glider was injured this morning when the craft’s engine failed, causing a forced landing into a pasture approximately 150 yards southeast of the Waimea-Kohala Airport, according to the Hawaii County Fire Department.

The pilot, an 80-year-old man, reported pain to his sternum from the harness upon impact. He was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital, where he’s listed in “stable condition,” stated the Fire Department, which responded to the 10:07 a.m. call.

During the landing approach, while in glider mode, the pilot reportedly experienced “inadequate lift while turning from downwind to the base leg of the landing pattern.” The pilot tried to start the engine in an attempt to make it to the runway, but the engine did not start and this resulted in the crash, the Fire Department stated.

The carbon fiber motorized glider received moderate damage to the empennage, fuselage, landing gears, wind and tail sections. The estimated loss of the glider was valued at $250,000 and the craft is insured, the Fire Department stated.