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Three die in glider crash near Houston

The glider association website shows an enclosed cockpit and promises a 20- to 30-minute glide after the glider releases from the tow plane. For an experienced glider pilot and his two guests, it probably seemed like a safe and fun activity.

But it wasn't. Two adults and a child, all sharing the same last name, died in an accident when their glider crashed near Houston. A spokesperson from the Galveston County Medical Examiner's Office, said autopsies are being performed which may provide some insight into why the crash occurred.

The glider pilot, a 68-year-old man from Willis, Texas, was a member of the Greater Houston Soaring Association. He had been a glider pilot with the Soaring Society of America for about 10 years or so, after his retirement. His guests in the glider were a 32-year-old woman and a 3-year-old boy from Houston. The relationship between the three was not made public, but as they share the same last name one could assume they were related.

A glider has an enclosed cockpit and very long wings. It is towed up to a height of about 2,000 feet and then released from the tow plane. According to the news report, the glider went into a nosedive right after being released. It crashed into a field near Wallis, about 40 miles from Houston.

In many situations when a person or persons are injured or die due to the negligence of another person, the surviving family members may seek compensation for the wrongful death of their loved one. In this case, the surviving family members may not wish to hold the 68-year-old man's estate liable.

However, if the towing pilot made an error, or the glider was not properly maintained by maintenance personnel, the surviving family members could seek compensation for the wrongful death of their loved ones.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "3 people, including 3-year-old boy, killed in Texas glider crash," Molly Hennessy-Fiske," June 18, 2012

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