Hang Gliding Crashes In America
Hang gliding crashes in America are on the rise, and should allow people to learn from these past mistakes. There have been numerous injuries across the United States because of hang gliding incidents, and deaths have followed right along as well. The total number of hang gliding crashes in America is not certain. The information is not posted publicly, but the ones that are owe the loss of their lives to poor landing, launching, and airspeed methods.
- Thomas Richard Mayer of Southern California. At the age of 60, Mayer dropped 300 feet from the air to the ground while doing his routine stunts through the air—his parachute failed to pop out when commanded. This is one of the most known hang gliding crashes in America. This is because hang gliding was his hobby, his love, and his career. He has been doing these stunts for years, and just on this day his parachute failed to work with him.
- Kim Buergel of Spokane. She was 49-years old at the time, and her powered hang glider failed to work. She crashed off the south shore of Kauai. She was on vacation, and on a two seater hang glider with a professional glider. They both were found near each other dead. This was her first ride on a hang glider.
- Man Unidentified in Kalama Valley. A man was found in serious condition after a fatal crash on a residential area near Kalama Valley. He misjudged his elevation when coming out of a cloud, and was forced into a semi controlled crash landing, barely missing the homes in the area by 200 feet. This was not his first time riding a hang glider, and he misjudged his direction and height. He enjoyed hang gliding as a hobby and pasttime.
- Jim Gaither of Montana. Jim Gaither worked in tourism, taking visitors to Hawaii out on his motorized hang glider to view the island. One afternoon, he and a passenger were reported missing. The motorized hang glider crashed in the waters just off shore, and Gaither and Buergel were found lifeless. He was an experienced pilot who enjoyed bringing tourists out for rides. He crashed just out shore of Kauai.
- John Seward of Austin, Texas. John Seward of Austin was found dead after the wreckage, but transported to a hospital nevertheless. The hang gliding crash was reported as an accident due to either wrongful landing or take off of the glider. Not very well known, but one of the hang gliding crashes in America that will be remembered. He was an enthusiast when it came to hang gliding, and some may even say expert. This time however, he expertise was not able to save him.