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Pilot survives sailplane crash in Madison County

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MADISON COUNTY,Ind. (May 15, 2016)–A Greentown man survived a sailplane accident in Madison County Sunday afternoon.

Shortly before 5 p.m. Madison County emergency crews were called to the 7200 block of West Madison County Road 700 North.  When officers arrived they located the sailplane about 300 yards south of  CR 700 North.

The pilot, 65-year-old Richard G. Smith of Greentown, was out of the sailplane laying down beside it.  Smith told authorities his back was stiff but he was okay.  Medics transported him to Community Hospital in Anderson for minor aches and stiffness.

Smith told deputies he caught a downdraft and was trying to recover from it.  Failing that the sailplane struck the ground nose first and then the right wing caught the ground, knocking the plane back about thirty feet where it came to rest on its belly.

Smith said he unbuckled himself and got out of the plane on his own.

The FAA will be out to the site Monday to investigate the crash.