General statement of the PMA to the DHV safety-class
The PMA appreciates in general every test that is beneficial for the safety in the paragliding sports. Therefore this includes also all tests and checks, which are extra conducted outlying of the EN/LTF standardization process of the type test. You can learn from every test something good and are able to take a deduction for future projects from the reproducible .
Although it is a basic requirement that such tests are comprehensible, reproducible and clearly occurring in the documentation.
Already at a meeting in February this year between the representatives of the PMA and the DHV, the manufacturers explicit asked for providing the record notes of the safety class tests to the PMA and the concerned manufacturers, in order to evaluate and eyeball more precisely.
The DHV did not go into the matter of such a demand yet, which is why the PMA makes this requirement now again public.
The members of the PMA would like to learn from the data and implement their knowledge directly into the gliders. Although this is just possible with the recording data and not only with the results. In this respect the denial attitude of the DHV is not helpful at all for the safety at this specific topic.
The PMA also wants an open discussion with the DHV about the staid boundary values of the safety class tests. This is how a paraglide gets a SC evaluation a 2, after a side collapse with a altitude loss of 38metres and a paraglide with 42metre altitude loss gets a SC evaluation of 3. How does the boundary value of 40metre occur? Why isn’t it 45metre or 50metre? Are there any incriminatory information from the accident statistics or other sources for the boundary value or are they just set arbitrary.
It is extremely doubtful how these gradations of the evaluation are set and for which reason.
Moreover it is very difficult to record the altitude loss concretely and repeatable with evaluable data. The position of the measuring devices, the measuring devices itself and his record rate have an important impact and can hoke a good test massively and we are not even talking about calibrated devices and validated record software. When does a side collapse exactly begin and end, how are the meteorological conditions and are they integrated in this calculation?
Questions over questions, which require an answer. This should happen quick, if we want to prevent that the reliability in every kind of test is risked by temporary restraining order or other legal disputes.
The safety class besides does not decide the different sizes of the glider line and therefore possibly the complete diverse reactions from small to big gliders. Although not only the evaluated size is tested singular from the outside, but the whole line of the glider.
If it would be so easy the EN/LTF inspection would only need to categorize the size ‘M’ in the middle weight range. But we all know this is not possible in the EN/LTF!
The examples could continue forever and the resistance of the DHV to deliver the data is not actually helping for a feeling of trust of the manufacturers. At least since the protector scandal in 2008, when the quotes of mistake of the DHV protector tests was beyond every imagination, Europe’s biggest paragliding association has to deal with being scrutinized.
The PMA symbolizes more safety in the paragliding sports, dozen of constructors, engineers and designer of all manufacturers work daily on more safety for their products. Therefore the demand of the PMA to the DHV to transmit their data, is also an invitation for common development. Development of the glider as well as their tests – both in the interest of the pilots.
The PMA looks forward to a technical based dialogue freely and openly with the DHV at anytime.