First Solo Ends With Stall/Spin At 45 Feet

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Canada’s Transportation Safety Board says a pilot’s first solo ended in disaster at Quebec City’s Jean Lesage International Airport, but it didn’t specify a cause for the crash. The student was seriously injured but survived. The board highlighted all the precautions that flight schools and instructors should observe before sending a new pilot aloft for the first time and reminded pilots, regardless of experience, “of the importance of being vigilant upon landing to quickly detect any signs that a go-around is required, and to be able to initiate the go-around at the appropriate time.”

This video also shows just how quickly a stall/spin can develop. The report noted this airplane was only 45 feet above the ground and crashed vertically into the infield. The student was enrolled in a first officer’s program at Orizon Aviation and had done eight touch-and-goes before the instructor got out. The student landed nosewheel first and bounced before veering off the runway. It was at that point the student tried the go-around and barely got off the ground. An attempt to make a turn with the plane in very slow flight stalled the left wing.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.