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Acrobatic pilot survives loss of wing

Ballistic parachute system does the business

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Vid Argentinian acrobatic pilot Dino Moliné survived the dramatic structural failure of his aircraft on Sunday, thanks to a full-plane parachute system which returned him gently to earth.

Moliné, 22, was performing at the Show Aéreo 2010 in Santa Fe, when he rather inconveniently lost a wing:

Moliné's Rans S-9 Chaos was, as you can see, completely gutted by fire, although the member of the Brigada Aérea Rans walked away with a just a minor burn to his foot.

He told local press: "I don't know what happened, I think it was structural failure and I felt an explosion. I saw a shadow go past and it was the wing. Then I heard César Faristocco shouting over the radio to deploy the parachute and I did. My mind was a blank, I saw fire inside the plane and panicked a bit. I got a burnt foot but am fine."

The César Falistocco in question is head of the Brigada Aérea Rans. He described wings dropping off Rans aircraft as "very rare", and "something which only happens once every ten years anywhere in the world".

The Rans S-9 Chaos is a kit plane with basic prices without engine starting at $10,900. Its standard equipment list doesn't include a ballistic parachute system, but does feature "removable wings". ®

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