On Wednesday, September 21, an ultralight glider carrying two passengers crashed into the ocean at the Outer Banks, North Carolina. Unfortunately, only one person survived the accident.
According to local officials, the glider had malfunctioned in flight and landed in the water in the vicinity of 120 Ocean Boulevard in Southern Shores. They were able to rescue and bring one of the passengers to shore.
Ultralight gliders are a type of hang-glider that relies on weight-shift control. Typically, these crafts combine the typical fabric wing of gliders with a trike-style vehicle with a pusher propeller. These aircraft can carry up to two passengers.
At the time of the first rescue effort, teams were unable to find the second person onboard. Hours later, they finally found the passenger, deceased. Authorities have not yet released any details on either passenger’s identity.
Among the agencies that helped with the rescue and recovery were Southern Shores fire and rescue, Kill Devil Hills surf rescue, Coast Guard, Southern Shores fire, Southern Shores Ocean Rescue, Southern Shores police, Duck fire and rescue and TI Coastal.
No other details regarding the accident are available at this time.
Ultralight Glider Crash Is Second Aircraft Accident to Occur in Outer Banks This Year
Sadly, the ultralight glider accident isn’t the only aircraft-related incident to occur in the waters of the Outer Banks in 2022. In February, researchers located a “debris field” in which a small North Carolina plane carrying eight people had crashed. Authorities on the scene found one body and suspected that no one survived the accident.
According to local outlet News Channel 12, four of the passengers were likely teenagers from Carteret County. Apparently, the group had gone on a hunting trip in Hyde County. Suddenly, though, the plane dropped off the radar.
Prior to the crash, a Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point air traffic controller observed that the aircraft was “behaving erratically on the radar” before making a crash landing on the Outer Banks field. The FAA has since deemed the cause of the crash to be “unknown circumstances.”
In response to the tragedy, East Carteret High School Basketball extended its condolences to the families of the teens.
“Prayers for our students, faculty administrators, our community and the families of these individuals. No one expects to go to school on Monday without 4 of their fellow classmates with them anymore. We will get through this together,” the team posted.
Likewise, the Carteret County Public School System released a statement regarding the tragedy.
“We are incredibly saddened as we join with the Down East and Eastern North Carolina community as we await official word on the airplane crash off the coast of Drum Inlet, North Carolina. Crisis teams are on school campuses to support students, staff, and families,” the statement read.