CHINA / Regional

Farmer banned from flying home-made plane
(Shanghai Daily)
Updated: 2006-07-25 09:35

The Zhejiang provincial branch of China's aviation industry has launched an investigation into a farmer-turned pilot, who flew his home-made plane earlier this month, Qianjiang Evening News reported yesterday. The authority said "do-it-yourself" aircrafts are banned from flying in China's skies.

Xu Bin, the farmer-turned pilot, kicked off a 25-minute test flight in his 30,000 yuan (US$3,750) airplane in Quzhou, eastern China's Zhejiang Province, at about 3pm on July 8.

Reaching an average height of 50 meters, Xu reportedly accomplished a series of maneuvers, including dives and sudden swerves.

Having heard of the flight via local media reports, Zhejiang aviation authorities immediately launched an investigation, and discovered that Xu did not register his flight, which breached the Aviation Law of China and several other relevant regulations. They banned Xu from making any future flights.

Home-made planes may face hidden safety problems, which are very dangerous to pilots, passengers and people in the vicinity. If the plane loses control, it may cause a terrible accident, so the government won't allow any unapproved flights and will strictly handle the breach to protect citizens and their assets, said Wang Jian, the vice director of the flight criteria department in the Zhejiang office of the CAAC.

Xu made the 130 kilogram plane with an engine he purchased from a Website. The cockpit seats were taken from a car as well as the DIY frame and other components.


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