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AAIB Report: Schleicher AS-K 13 (G-DCMK), Tow Rope Detached Following an Aerotow Launch

While taking off under aerotow, the tow rope detached at low level from the glider, Troed yr Harn, Talgarth, Powys on 12 August 2022

Image: Picture of G-DCMK
Image: Picture of G-DCMK

A student and instructor were taking off under aerotow when the tow rope detached from the glider. The instructor took over control and landed the glider in a nearby field. Both pilots sustained serious injuries, but have recovered.

The tow release had been modified, but not in a way that would have contributed to the occurrence and the investigation was not able to determine with certainty any causal factors that would have resulted in a premature release from the tow.

An inadvertent input on the release knob or an unidentified mechanical failure of the tow release system could not be ruled out.

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