Grasslands, Centurion
+27 61-719-2430
riaan@epic-aviation.co.za

Safety Bulletins

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Safety Bulletin 1  – Equipment failure and maintenance of equipment Safety Bulletin 2 – Water landing, DANGER Safety Bulletin 3 – Wearing helmet and safety gear for ground training Safety Bulletin 4 – Grasslands Rules, especial regarding Freq, no-fly Zones and surrounding airspace

 

 

 

Safety Bulletin 1

Equipment failure and maintenance of equipment

Over the last few years we seen a big change in design and way PPG get manufactured, Materials from:
  • Stainless
  • Aluminum
  • Titanium
  • Composite materials (Kevler and Carbon)
  • Certain Plastics
One of the big problems is their is not a set standard for any of these products, design or for manufacturing. As far as I can see their is not ONE manufactured that got certification for, Structure, design concept, Material etc. Even in Germany (DHV certification) Is around noise etc. The world std is that PPG (the frame and Motor) is a add on to PG, Meaning a tool to assist you to fly, and that the Wing, Harness must be certified as primary equipment. Even in SA it would not be possible to certify PPG since it fall under  NTCA  (Non Tyope certified Aircraft) BUT it doesn’t mean we must not look at basic standards, quality and safety. Unfortunately their is not much we can do on Building std, imports etc. We can just advice and give some value pointers. Pointers that might just safe your life.

Some valuable point/items to inspect:

  • Inspect your Harness, make sure all your clips is working and not damage, especially during transporting
  • Check straps for cuts, lose stitching etc
  • Inspect and if necessary replace your carbines. Ask your Instructor or Safety office for advice
  • Check your propeller. Not recommended to  repair it your self
  • Check your frame for cracks, damage parts, if need be replace
  • Check your engine mounts and any damage parts, get it regularly inspected and serviced.
  • Check your electric system, batter, wires etc
  • Check your supporting harness arms, for possible cracks. We seen damage to these arms especial after face plant or even crash. it is recommended and advice to get your arms inspected by your motor supplier and manufacturer. We seen certain arms made from Aluminum pipe (Flyproducts) cracking just from constant picking it up on  one side of the harness.
IF IN DOUBT, Contact your dealer, school or instructor. Most of them got years of experience and will be able to assist you  
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Safety Bulletin 2

Water landing, DANGER

Going to the coast, not your normal flying site , BE Aware. Some of the most dangerous situations you can get your self  into is landing in water.  Especially landing  in the surf. BE READY… cropped-flotation-kangook-015-resize.jpg
http://powerfloat.com.au/cms/ The PowerFloat Flotation Device is a MUST for pilots who fly over or around water. In the rare case an emergency landing or reserve chute deployment is required, the PowerFloat System can save your life. Some Paragliding & Powered Paragliding harnesses on the market can be difficult to exit from, especially if you make an emergency water-landing. Pilots have lost their machines and even their lives in situations like this. The PowerFloat flotation device is designed to rapidly inflate in such a situation, keeping the pilot and their equipment from sinking to the bottom of a body of water. Featuring a non-invasive compact design, the PowerFloat System is easy to install, lightweight, and a small price to pay for the safety it offers. With more flotation than other models on the market, the PowerFloat can keep even the largest pilots or machines afloat. PowerFloat Inflation Devices come in several models. If you are a Powered Paragliding Pilot and fly a single-passenger foot-launch machine, the standard PowerFloat System is suitable. The standard model comes stock with auto & manual inflation capability. If you are a Paragliding, quad, trike, tandem, or hang-glider pilot, the XL model is suitable for your application. The XL PowerFloat comes in manual-only OR manual-automatic configuration. For pricing and ordering, please see below:  Power Float Flotation device for Powered Paragliding   IMG_1622 PowerFloat Powered Paragliding Flotation Device DSC_0144 IMG_1803

Some info in notes from Tony Gibosn, Experience Display and competition  pilot with MANY flights over water, for displays, fun and competition:

Water presents Paramotor pilot with an enticingly cool way to play and show others just how good your flying skill is to drag you feet just on the surface or wing tip touch.  This way of flying is really a show that looks impressive. Keep in mind that more people have died due to drowning in the sport of Paramotoring, than in any other way, while participating in our unique sport. Flying over water with a Paramotor always presents us with a risk of drowning. Take into consideration that landing in open water would mean you cannot touch the bottom while standing up. In this case with out a system to maintain buoyancy you will sink like a stone with the extra dead weight of the Motor dragging you down. Your fuel tank having air and lighter than water Petrol and oil in it will turn you upside down and take you head down to the bottom of the dam, lake, rive or ocean. If you landed in the waves of the ocean even close to shore you could get tumbled around entangling you in you lines of your glider. These are designed not to break so getting yourself out of that mess is going to be hard if not impossible. Landing in fast moving water like a river could do the same as waves but also caries the risk of your wing snagging on submerged obstacles causing you to get pulled under. Even getting dragged by the wind in open water while floating on the surface can cause you to get dragged under the surface. These scenarios could be due to a possible engine failure, wing malfunction or simply making a mistake in your piloting judgment. A water rescue systems can save your life and should be thought of as being bought as an insurance policy for your wellbeing as well as the protection of your gear.

Water Rescue Devices

o Standard life Jacket o Self inflating personal Rescue systems o Self inflating rescue systems to attach to your Paramotor frame o Hook Knife (cut the Lines or webbing) o Strobe light (water tight) Take special care to install your rescue system correctly so that it will inflate correctly and make sure to service the system on a regular basis.    

 

 

 

Safety Bulletin 3

Wearing helmet and safety gear for ground training

Highly recommended that when you open and train with a wing to wear a safety helmet,  boots and gloves. Over the last few years I personally seen students and pilots get dragged and lifted of the ground. Does not matter where you train, perfect grass fields, on rough mountain terrain it can be dangerous, You can be flipped backward, thrown forward and even side ways, hitting your head on the ground, a rock. I also seen students and a experience acro pilot been lifted of the ground during ground handling and flipped over from a dust devil that came through. Unfortunately it is not yet law, might never be but we at Epic Aviation highly recommended the use of ground handling wings at all times.

Std Mountain climbing and Mountain bike helmets,

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Nice thin gloves, ideal for ground training and can also be used for flying

81kpiameccl-_sy355_ thermal-riding-horse-riding-gloves, Horse riding gloves or in expensive gloves from the hardware store.  

Important:  Ankle boots (Highly recommended)

Over the last few years me seen students and pilots twisting, and even braking their ankles on ground training, takeoff and landing. Therain not always smooth. Walk your terrain before training and flying and spot problem areas. 883200     download  

Important to understand:

  1. While you do ground training you would prefer a bit of wind, this time of the year, weather change quickly and to the extremes. We seen over the last two weeks winds from 5kmh suddenly change within 5min to almost 60+ Kmh.
  2. You will also note a lot of dust devils this time of the year. If you seen some, pack up and rather wait, They will pick you up and through you like a rag doll.
  3. Walk your field, even as pilot it is important to know your terrain. I personally stepped in to a hole before just before take off. was lucky not braking my ankle but got slammed in to the ground.
  4. Gloves help your hands from getting cut. If you get dragged, do not pull the brakes, grabbed  the C-lines and pull them in. If you do pull brakes wrapped them and keep on wrapping till the wing is fully deflated and turn the wing down wind or fall on it and keep it down. I am sure some one will help, might be after taken some photos but with the right gear you possible walk away and ticked it of as a nice experience.

IF IN DOUBT, Stay on the ground, Keep wing in the bag, ask an senior pilot or instructor for advice.

 

 

 

 

Safety Bulletin 4

 Grasslands Rules, especial regarding Freq, no-fly Zones and surrounding airspace