Who attacked a civil aircraft first?

Many questions still unanswered after the recovery

Several fire brigades, the THW, numerous rescue workers from the BRK, several emergency doctors and two rescue helicopters were on duty on Thursday evening, reported Yves Wächter, the spokesman for the fire brigades in the Kulmbach district. When darkness fell, the scene of the accident had to be illuminated. After a brief interruption in the night, as Wächter said, the emergency services resumed their work at 7.45 a.m. on Friday in order to assist with all the measures required by air accident prevention.

Wächter said from the outset that it could be dangerous for the rescuers. Firefighters were trained for these purposes on the Kulmbach airfield. “We quickly saw that propellant charges were built in. The aviation safety authority was informed of this via the control center and then stopped the rescue.

A technician who knows the aircraft model defused the propellant charge. If the pilot had had the opportunity to do so, it would have been used to "shoot" the occupants together with a reserve parachute from the aircraft. In the event of an explosion on the ground, this would have endangered the rescue workers. That is why it was decided to pull them away from the immediate scene of the accident. “This is difficult for firefighters and the rescue service. We want to help and yet we have to wait and see. But it wasn't possible any other way, ”explained Yves Wächter. "We also have to take care of our people and observe our own safety."

On Friday the police confirmed that the victims were a 52-year-old from the Kulmbach district and a 51-year-old from the Upper Palatinate.

Airmen speculate about strong winds as the cause of the accident

The Kulmbach airfield is currently not in full operation due to the corona pandemic. According to airmen, the tower is currently unoccupied. “Flying without a flight director” is the name of the procedure approved by the responsible government in Central Franconia. But that doesn't mean that everyone can just take off, informs a pilot. Anyone who wants to fly from Kulmbach needs a person on the ground who has been instructed in the rescue systems and who has to watch the take-off process until the plane is gone. Even if the sun was shining on Thursday, the day of the accident, that does not mean that the weather was good for flying, it is said in aviation circles. North winds had blown, so-called "cross winds" had occurred. Up to 20 knots of wind have been measured. “You had to really fly on Thursday,” says one pilot.

Of course, there is speculation among experts as to what could have led to the terrible accident. The winds that prevailed on the day of the accident are mentioned first. Air currents that pilots call a "roller" could have caused the crash, as they say. "If you don't master it, if you are not fast or not high enough, then the wind turns you around," is how one aviator describes the dangerous situation. That fits in with the accident, because the ultralight machine with the two men on board was still in the starting phase when it crashed.