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2038Kitesurfing danger in strong wind!

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  • Hung Vu
    Sep 27, 2001
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      It has been brought to my attention that another kitesurfer died in
      Spain. My condolence to his friend and family.

      It seems like the accident happened in strong disturbance of air (spin)
      in relatively strong wind 18+ knots.

      The only kitemares or near kitemares I had in kitesurfing was when the
      wind was 20+ knots.

      Remember that kite velocity is often 2-3 times wind speed and power is
      square of kite velocity.

      Since then, I have started to use shorter lines in stronger wind and
      have yet encountered any kitemare in strong wind.

      When the lines are shorter, kite velocity is limited to 1-2 times wind
      speed (the kite does not have enough wind window to accelerate to 2-3
      times wind speed).

      Also, when the lines are shorter, regardless of how disturbed the air
      is, the wind velocity at the kite should be somewhat similar to the wind
      feel by the rider and he/she can re-act appropriately sooner before it's
      too late.

      It's seem like shorter lines is one of the answer to safe kitesurfing in
      strong disturbed wind, let's try to use it.

      P.S., I frequently kiteskiied in disturbed winter storms and felt much
      safer kiteskiing in 30 - 45 knots with my Wipika Classic 3.5 and 0m
      lines than with a 1.5 m2 foil with 30m lines.

      Hung.
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