Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Air Force Major Garrett Knowlan dies during survival training

A test pilot engineer in the U.S. Air Force has died in Pensacola Bay during open water survival training after parachuting, the first death since the training program began in 1994.

Maj. Garrett Wayne Knowlan, 32, a graduate of the Air Force Academy and executive officer for Brig. Gen. David Harris, 96th Test Wing commander at Eglin Air Force Base, was the married father of two children and had lived in Shalimar since 2010, according to an Eglin Air Force base spokeswoman.

The accident, which took place last Thursday, wasn’t made public until Wednesday morning. Air Force public relations officials provided only limited details of the mishap, which is still under investigation.

Knowlan was struck by a boat in Pensacola Bay, according to Maj. Carla Gleason, chief of operations for Air Education and Training Command public affairs at Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio.

The four-day training course, which focuses on staying alive after parachuting into open water, is designed “for persons at high risk of isolation when they get shot down,” said 1st Lt. Nick Kim, a spokesman for the. Air Force Survival School, headquartered at Fairchild Air Force Base in Washington state.

Knowlan, based at Eglin, was a veteran aviator whose experience included graduating from the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base in California. He flew the CV-22 Osprey and HC/MC 130J.

“This is a tragic loss which has been felt throughout team Eglin,” Harris said. “Garrett was an outstanding officer and test engineer, respected through the wing. He was dedicated to the United States Air Force and, as my executive officer, served as my right-hand man.”

Despite his rank, Knowlan was required to undergo the same training as much less experienced flight crew members, Kim said.

“For survival school, it ranges from a young airman to a high-level officer,” he said.
According to normal schedules of the four-day class, Knowlan was in the third day.
Like thousands of survival trainees before him, Knowlan rode into the bay on a small boat launched from Pensacola Naval Air Station, where the Air Force training program is based. Sometime Thursday afternoon, he was hooked to a parasail while standing on the boat and then hoisted behind it.

The training involves elevating the parasailing students to a height of about 200 feet. Then the trainees are lowered into the water to simulate a parachute drop. According to an Air Force website, once in the water, the students practice signaling rescue aircraft, dealing with hazardous aquatic life and life raft procedures.

Knowlan, a native of Jackson, Mo., is survived by his wife, Megan Marie Shipley Knowlan, and their two sons. Funeral services are tentatively scheduled for Friday in the major’s hometown, where his homecoming will be in accord with the survival school’s motto: “Return with Honor.”

In his obituary, Knowlan was described as a hard-working, outstanding young Christian man who was a “life force” for his wife and young sons.

“Garrett’s death is an unfathomable loss to his family, his friends and his country,” the obituary read. “His death raises many difficult questions that seem impossible to answer.”

Electrical problem leads to brief evacuation from Federal Aviation Administration’s William J. Hughes Technical Center in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — Approximately 1,000 employees were evacuated from the Federal Aviation Administration’s William J. Hughes Technical Center Wednesday after the smell of smoke was reported in building’s atrium.

Employees were evacuated at 10:40 a.m. from Building 300, the technical center’s main administration building. Emergency personnel responded, vents were cleared, and the building was reopened about an hour later, FAA spokeswoman Holly Baker said. Building 316, which is attached to Building 300, remained open throughout the incident.

The cause of the problem is under investigation, but it’s believed that electrical issues were involved, Baker said.

A fire at the same building in June resulted in $2.2 million damage, primarily from smoke and water damage on the second a third floors. No foul play is suspected in that incident, but the cause remains under investigation.

The FAA still is awaiting that information in a report by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, which investigates fires at all federal buildings, Baker said.

http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com

Philadelphia firm wins contract to replace roof at Atlantic City International Airport (KACY), New Jersey

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — The South Jersey Transportation Authority on Tuesday awarded a $245,000 contract to a Philadelphia firm for a new roof at Atlantic City International Airport.

Work was deemed an emergency necessity after damage was caused by a severe storm known as a derecho in June. Funding for the replacement was redirected from the authority’s capital budget last month.

Union Roofing Contractors Inc. of Philadelphia was awarded the contract for the work that should begin before the end of the year. The firm provided the lowest of three bids received on Tuesday.

Thomas Company Inc., of Egg Harbor Township, bid $297,500, and United States Roofing Corp., of Norristown, Pa., bid $328,800, according to a resolution authorizing the contract.

Last month, SJTA opted to forego immediate plans to convert the Atlantic City Expressway to all electronic tolling, an $18.3 million project. That funding will instead finance the roof replacement, an addition to the State Police call center at Farley Plaza, and the third phase of the expressway widening.

Expected to cost $15 million, the third and final phase of the expressway project will add a third westbound lane between mileposts 25 and 31. That section of the road extends approximately from just beyond the Farley Plaza rest stop to the exit for Route 73 in Winslow Township, Camden County.
Bids and proposals for that work have been received, and the authority plans to award a contract for the work next month, SJTA acting Executive Director Sam Donelson said in his monthly report at Tuesday’s board meeting. Construction is expected to start by early 2013 and will take about a year to complete.

http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com

Los Alamos - Planes sustain hail damage

The planes sitting out at the airport in the pleasant Los Alamos sunshine may look nice, but looks can be deceiving.

Many are damaged beyond repair due to last week’s hail storm, according to some of their owners. Though the hail last week didn’t shatter any windows or cave in any roofs at the airport, many of the planes’ thin metal surfaces suffered hundreds of dings and divots, making many of the aircraft a risk to fly.

“Every plane was damaged, one way or another,” Los Alamos Airport Manager Peter Soderquist said.

Soderquist said 17 or 18 airplanes were damaged in the storm that was so strong out by the airport, there were particular spots where the hail, measured to be about an inch in diameter that accumulated in two-foot drifts.

“It was pretty intense,” he said.

Dan Gabel, the press secretary for the Los Alamos Civil Air Patrol, estimated his Piper “Cherokee D” airplane sustained at least $18,000 worth of damage during the storm.

“I’m sure it’s going to be more than that because this time, the damage is far worse,” Gabel said, noting Los Alamos endured a similar hail storm about three years ago.

Turns out he was kind of off. Later, when his insurance adjuster came to check out the damage, the estimate came to about $50,000. He believes when all is said and done, he will have to shell out at least $5,000 of his own money to make it right, even though he has insurance. If Gabel’s and some of the other planes can be saved, the aircraft will have to undergo a lengthy and expensive process of repairing the crafts’ “skin.”

“They basically have to replace the aluminum skin on the plane’s wings”, Gabel said of his own plane. “The have to remove the rivets, take off the old skin, put on the new skin, then prime and paint it.”

According to Soderquist, the county has had plans in place for some time to help the pilots out, but for some reason or another, those plans either fell through or just never came to fruition.

At some point, between the last disastrous hail storm of three years ago and this one, the county had several cement foundations laid down into the tarmac in the east quadrant of the airport in preparation for the hangars that would eventually follow.

The foundations, however, were positioned atop a landfill, creating an unstable foundation for the hangars, so the project was abandoned. But Soderquist said at some point, the project will get on track again.

“The land that landfill is on is the only acreage upon which the airport can expand upon and build hangars,” Soderquist said. “We will eventually come to a resolution of the problem, and when we do we will build hangars there.”

http://www.lamonitor.com

Air Tractor Inc AT-502B, N598LA: Accident occurred October 17, 2012 in Portales, New Mexico

NTSB Identification: CEN13CA019 
 14 CFR Part 137: Agricultural
Accident occurred Wednesday, October 17, 2012 in Portales, NM
Aircraft: AIR TRACTOR INC AT-502B, registration: N598LA
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.


The commercial pilot was maneuvering the airplane above a crop field during an aerial application flight. Upon entering the field, the pilot misjudged the distance and struck a power line. He subsequently lost control of the airplane, impacted terrain, and came to rest inverted. The pilot reported no mechanical problems with the airplane or engine. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the empennage.


IDENTIFICATION
  Regis#: 598LA        Make/Model: AT5T      Description: AT-502/503
  Date: 10/17/2012     Time: 2217

  Event Type: Incident   Highest Injury: None     Mid Air: N    Missing: N
  Damage: Unknown

LOCATION
  City: PORTALES   State: NM   Country: US

DESCRIPTION
  AIRCRAFT CLIPPED POWER LINES AND CRASHED INTO A FIELD. PORTALES, NM

INJURY DATA      Total Fatal:   0
                 # Crew:   1     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    
                 # Pass:   0     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    
                 # Grnd:         Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    


OTHER DATA
  Activity: Aerial Application      Phase: Other      Operation: OTHER


  FAA FSDO: ALBUQUERQUE, NM  (SW01)               Entry date: 10/18/2012 

http://registry.faa.gov/N598LA
 
 
PORTALES, N.M. — A single engine plane crashed into a cotton field east of Portales on Wednesday afternoon, police confirmed.

The crash happened on Roosevelt Road 6 and County Road 6 off the Dora Highway, Pronews 7 on scene reported. The plane appeared to be a crop duster.

Police said the pilot walked away from the scene uninjured.

The Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office said its office lost power when the crash happened. Other parts of the city also lost power.

Investigation into the crash is now underway, authorities said.

Lancair LC42-550FG, N1800H: Sheriffs Find Marijuana on Aircraft at Portales Municipal Airport (KPRZ), New Mexico

http://registry.faa.gov/N1800H 

PORTALES, N.M. (KRQE) - A tip from U.S. Border and Customs air interdiction agents led to a drug bust at the Portales Municipal airport Tuesday. 
 
When the 2004 Lancair single-engine aircraft landed, the Roosevelt County Sheriff's Department was waiting with their narcotics-detection K-9.

The dog alerted deputies to drugs on the plane and prompted a search, according to deputies.

After executing a search warrant, deputies found a suitcase in the baggage area of the plane filled with approximately 15 pounds of what was described as high-grade hydroponic marijuana with an estimated street value of $90,000.

The pilot, Paul Connors, 54, of Temecula, Calif., was the only person on board the plane.

"His words to us was he was traveling back and forth for work to the Plainview, Texas, area and he just was going to make a little extra money while he was doing it," said Chief Deputy Sheriff Malin Parker.

Connors is charged with possession with the intent to distribute a controlled substance. He's being held at the Roosevelt County Detention Center on a $50,000 cash-only bond.

When asked if Connors planned to distribute the marijuana in New Mexico, Parker said, "he didn't say, he invoked his rights." Parker did state Connors had been arrested before for similar charges in Texas.

Parker said efforts by the Sheriff's Department to seize the aircraft are underway. The aircraft has an estimated value of $400,000.



http://www.krqe.com




PORTALES -- Police arrested Paul J. Connors on Tuesday, after finding 15lbs of hydroponics marijuana on an aircraft at the Portales Municipal Airport.

 The Roosevelt County Sheriffs Office received a tip from the US Border and Customs air interdiction unit on a possible aircraft with narcotics on board at the Portales Municipal Airport. After contacting Connors on the plane, a drug dog was deployed on the plane and indicated the possibility of narcotics on it.

A search warrant was issued and the Roosevelt County Sheriffs Deputies, assisted by US Border and Customs agents, found a large black suitcase in the baggage area. The bag was found to be filled with marijuana and had a street value of $90,000.

Connors was booked on the charge of Possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and released back to the Detention Center on a $50,000.00 cash only bond. Efforts to seize the aircraft are underway.

Hawaiian Holdings Inc. purchases first turboprop aircraft

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. recently completed the purchase of its first ATR 42 twin-turboprop aircraft.

The company also has a purchase agreement to acquire a second aircraft scheduled to be delivered next month.

The previously owned planes are being purchased from Ireland-based company ASL Aviation Group Limited.

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. says the aircraft will be used for new passenger service to Molokai and Lanai next year. The aircraft will seat between 44 and 50 passengers.

“These are the ideal aircraft for service to the less populated islands in our state,” said Mark Dunkerley, president and CEO of Hawaiian Holdings, parent company of Hawaiian Airlines. “This new service will complement the B717 jet service offered by Hawaiian Airlines as well as provide the additional service that Molokai and Lanai residents have been requesting.”

The new turboprop service will operate separately from Hawaiian Airlines. Hawaiian Holdings is currently developing the name and brand identity of the new entity.

http://www.khon2.com

Jedediah’s opens at Yellowstone Regional Airport (KCOD), Cody, Wyoming

The cafe at Yellowstone Regional Airport will re-open Thursday under new management and a new name.

“Jedediah’s at the Airport” will join a group of the company’s eateries – which include the original Jedediah’s House of Sourdough in downtown Jackson, and cafes at the airports in Jackson and Missoula.

“Here at YRA we’re going for more of a replication of our original restaurant – offering our sourdough recipes such as pancakes, baked goods, bread and sandwiches,” company co-owner Mike Gierau said.

“We’ll also be offering what many customers consider to be our signature plate, the ‘Sour Jack,’ which is thicker than a crepe and thinner than a pancake,” he said.

The cafe also will offer hamburgers made from beef provided by Legg Creek Ranch on the South Fork, he said.

“We try to buy locally as much as possible,” he added.

The city council on Tuesday approved Jedediah’s request for a restaurant liquor license. They will offer beer, wine and spirits, Gierau said.

Michelle Aldrich of Cody has been hired to manage the cafe, and has four employees, Gierau said.

“We might hire some more people later, depending on how business goes,” he said. “With Cody having such a strong hospitality base, it’s not difficult to find experienced restaurant employees here,” he added.

The company’s regional operations manager, Rhea Escamilla Quijada, will also help out.
“I make regular visits to all our restaurants,” she said.

Tara Raymond had operated the YRA cafe under the name “The Landing” for nine years, until July 20.

Gierau acknowledged the cafe’s location is challenging. The new terminal is distant from the highway, and the cafe’s location in the building is remote from the passenger area.

Jedediah’s is working with airport security forces to bring some catering services into the passenger area, he said.

There also will be a focus on drawing in local customers, Gierau said.

“We see this as a nice out-of-the-way spot for locals to come during the busy tourist season,” he added. “We hope to make this a place where people can come visit, and get a good meal at a good price.”

http://www.codyenterprise.com

Grumman C-1A Trader, Fuel Services LLC, N27PH: Accident occurred October 15, 2012 in Willow, Alaska

NTSB Identification: ANC13FA004 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, October 15, 2012 in Willow, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/10/2014
Aircraft: GRUMMAN AIRCRAFT ENG CORP C-1A, registration: N27PH
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The airline transport-rated pilot was on the first leg of a flight to deliver fuel to a remote mining site. About 30 minutes after departure, a primary radar track, thought to be that of the accident airplane, showed the airplane make a 180-degree turn back toward the point of departure. Two witnesses described hearing the airplane pass overhead, and both said that “the airplane did not sound right.” One witness stated that the airplane flew directly overhead of his location under a low ceiling and was going very slow.

The airplane was severely damaged by a postimpact fire and explosion. A review of on-scene photographs by an NTSB fire and explosives investigator determined that there was no evidence of an in-flight fire.
Analysis of weather in the area around the time of the accident showed that although the ceiling was low, the weather did not play a significant role in the accident.

An NTSB on-scene examination of the airframe revealed no preaccident mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. However, due to the disposition of the wreckage, a detailed examination of the engines could not be accomplished on-scene. The wreckage was not recovered from the accident site. The circumstances leading up to the accident could not be determined.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot’s loss of control of the airplane for reasons that could not be determined because the wreckage was not recovered from the accident site.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT 

On October 15, 2012, about 1557 Alaska daylight time, a twin-engine Grumman C-1A "Trader" airplane, N27PH, was destroyed when it collided with tree-covered terrain and incurred a postcrash fire and explosion about 19 miles west of Willow, Alaska. The airline transport rated pilot, who was the only occupant, was fatally injured. The airplane was registered to Fuel Services, LLC, Anchorage, Alaska, and was being operated as a 14 CFR Part 91 visual flight rules (VFR) cross-country fuel transport flight when the accident occurred. Marginal visual meteorological conditions were reported at the airplane's point of departure. The accident flight originated from the Wasilla Airport, Wasilla, Alaska, about 1520, en route to the Nixon Fork Mine, about 28 miles northeast of McGrath, Alaska.

According to the co-owner of the airplane, the purpose of the flight was to transport approximately 900 gallons of diesel fuel to a company owned tank that supplies fuel for a mining operation. 

When the airplane did not arrive at its destination, the co-owner of the airplane reported it overdue to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) at 1757. After being notified of the overdue airplane, personnel from the 11th Air Force's Rescue Coordination Center initiated a search for the missing airplane along its supposed route of flight. On the morning of October 16, an Air National Guard C-130 Hercules was able to locate the wreckage. Rescue personnel aboard a HH-60G helicopter were able to reach the site later that morning, and confirmed the pilot was deceased.

Two witnesses reported seeing the airplane fly over their locations. The first witness saw the airplane as it was flying northwest at an altitude that he estimated at 3,000 to 4,000 feet under an overcast layer. He stated that the airplane did not sound "normal," but he did not notice anything unusual, like smoke, trailing the airplane.

The second witness stated that he saw the airplane fly over his cabin headed southeast at an estimated altitude of 300 to 400 feet. He stated that the airplane sounded like it was "struggling," but he could not see anything abnormal about the airplanes appearance.

Primary radar data taken from the Anchorage Terminal Radar Approach Control Facility (TRACON), shows an unidentified aircraft, believed to be the accident airplane, depart the Wasilla airport about 1522. After departure, the track proceeded to the Northwest with cruising groundspeeds of between 180 and 193 knots. No altitude or transponder code data was transmitted by the airplane. Around 1343 the radar track changed direction and proceeded to the southeast. Groundspeeds after the track changed direction started at 143 knots, and gradually decreased to a low of 117 knots about 5 minutes before the accident. The last radar plot for the airplane was at 1556:47, approximately 5.5 nautical miles from the accident site, and showed a heading of 088 degrees, and a groundspeed of 175 knots.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION 

The pilot, age 62, held an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate with airplane multiengine land, airplane multiengine sea, airplane single engine land, airplane single engine sea, and rotorcraft-helicopter ratings. His most recent first-class medical was issued on February 7, 2012, with the limitation that he must have glasses available for near vision. 

No personal flight records were located for the pilot, and the aeronautical experience listed on page 3 of this report was obtained from a review of the airmen Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records on file in the Airman and Medical Records Center located in Oklahoma City. On the pilot's application for medical certificate, dated February 7, 2012, he indicated that his total aeronautical experience was about 25,000 hours, of which 200 were in the previous 6 months.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION 

The airplane was a surplus United States Navy, high-wing, twin-engine, transport airplane manufactured by the Grumman Aerospace Corporation in 1957. It was powered by two Wright R-1820-82WA Cyclone, nine cylinder radial piston engines, each capable of producing 1,525 horsepower.

No logbooks or other maintenance records were located, and according to the owner were onboard the airplane at the time of the accident, and destroyed by the postcrash fire.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION 

The closest weather reporting station to the accident site is the Skwentna Airport, Skwentna, Alaska, about 22 miles west. About 63 minutes before the accident, at 1452, a weather observation was reporting, in part: Wind, 350 degrees (true) at 10 knots, gusting to 18 knots; visibility, 15 statute miles; sky condition, scattered at 1,500 feet, 3,000 feet overcast; temperature, 30 degrees F; dew point, 23 degrees F; altimeter, 29.11 inches Hg.

There were two witness reports that included weather conditions from their viewpoint. The first, near Willow, reported that there was an overcast layer about 5,000 feet agl, with no precipitation. The second, about 14 miles northwest of the accident site, reported an overcast ceiling between 600 and 1000 feet, with occasional snow showers. He said that the airplane was flying below the ceiling, going in, and out of some of the low clouds.

See the NTSB Meteorology Report in the public docket for this accident for more detailed weather information.

COMMUNICATIONS

No communications were noted with the accident airplane

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION 

The airplane impacted in tree covered terrain on an approximate heading of 125 degrees. Portions of the fragmented airplane were scattered along a debris path oriented along a magnetic heading of 130 degrees, and measured about 240 feet from the point of initial impact to the furthest piece of wreckage. The initial point of impact was noted to be a birch tree, approximately 60 feet from the first point of ground impact. 

The first point of ground impact was noted to be the left wing tip. The left wing tip structure was found buried approximately 1 foot under the ground. An impact scar, consistent with the left wing leading edge, extended from the initial ground impact point. Fragments of the left wing were found adjacent to the ground scar. From the first point of impact to the first ground scar, it could be surmised that the angle of impact was approximately 60 degrees nose down.

A postimpact fire and explosion destroyed most of the airplane's structure.

There was an impact crater of size and shape consistent with the left engine and propeller. A second impact crater consistent with the fuselage was adjacent to the first crater. The second crater contained the empennage, the left engine and propeller, and left engine nacelle. A tree adjacent to the second crater on the southwest edge had significant scraping and marks, as well as two pieces of embedded metal which looked like it came from a propeller. The marks were consistent with contact from the right engine propeller and the empennage.

The empennage remained mostly intact, and came to rest upside down on the edge of the second impact crater. The horizontal stabilizer was mostly undamaged. The vertical stabilizer sustained fire damage consistent with the postimpact fire. No anomalies were noted with either the pitch or rudder trim systems.

Just adjacent to the second crater on the north edge, were the right engine propeller, and the remains of the cockpit and forward fuselage.

A second area of severely burned wreckage was located approximately 15 feet forward of the second impact crater on an approximate 125 degree heading. Amongst the charred wreckage were the remains of the fuselage, a large section of the right wing and engine nacelle, the right engine, and various other pieces of burned wreckage.

The left engine, located in the first impact crater, was partially buried. No anomalies were noted to the visible portion of the exterior of the engine case. The exhaust tubes had malleable bending and folding, producing sharp creases that were not cracked or broken along the creases. The left propeller remained attached to the engine. All three blades were bent aft and exhibited a slight amount of torsional S-bending. The left propeller hub also showed rotational scoring.

The right engine, located in the second area of wreckage, sustained severe thermal damage during the postaccident fire. The exhaust tubes showed no signs of ductile folding. The right propeller separated from the engine at the crankshaft. All three blades showed leading edge gouging, chord wise scratching, and torsional S-bending.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION 

A postmortem examination of the pilot was done under the authority of the Alaska State Medical Examiner, Anchorage, Alaska, on October 17, 2012. The examination revealed that the cause of death for the pilot was attributed to blunt force injuries.

A toxicological examination by the FAA's Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) on January 9, 2013 was negative for any carbon monoxide, alcohol, or drugs.

FIRE 

A review of the on-scene photos by an NTSB fire and explosives investigator revealed that there was no evidence of an in-flight fire.

ORGANIZATIONAL AND MANAGEMENT INFORMATION

The company was set up to transport fuel to support mining operations at various locations throughout Alaska. Since the operator leased the fuel farms that they delivered fuel to, it was not required for them to operate as a FAR Part 135 carrier.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

About 3 months prior to the accident, the airplane was involved in a gear up landing, which required inspection of the engine, and replacement of the engine propellers for both engines. The operator told the NTSB IIC that the inspections were satisfactory, but could not provide documentation to support.

A more detailed examination of the airframe and engines was not possible because the wreckage was never recovered from the accident site.

The operator did not fill out the required NTSB Pilot/Operator accident reporting form 6120.1.


http://registry.faa.gov/N27PH

NTSB Identification: ANC13FA004
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, October 15, 2012 in Willow, AK
Aircraft: GRUMMAN AIRCRAFT ENG CORP C-1A, registration: N27PH
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On October 15, 2012, about 1557 Alaska daylight time, a twin-engine Grumman C-1A “Trader” airplane, N27PH, sustained substantial damage when it collided with tree-covered terrain about 19 miles west of Willow, Alaska. The airline transport rated pilot, who was the only occupant, was fatally injured. The airplane was registered to Fuel Services, LLC, Anchorage, Alaska, and was being operated as a 14 CFR Part 91 visual flight rules (VFR) cross-country fuel transport flight when the accident occurred. Marginal visual meteorological conditions were reported at the airplane’s point of departure. The accident flight originated from the Wasilla Airport, Wasilla, Alaska, about 1520, en route to the Nixon Fork Mine, about 28 miles northeast of McGrath, Alaska.

According to the co-owner of the airplane, the purpose of the flight was to transport approximately 900 gallons of diesel fuel to a company owned tank that supplies fuel for a mining operation.

When the airplane did not arrive at its destination, the co-owner of the airplane reported it overdue to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) at 1757. After being notified of the overdue airplane, personnel from the 11th Air Force’s Rescue Coordination Center initiated a search for the missing airplane along its supposed route of flight. On the morning of October 16, an Air National Guard C-130 Hercules was able to locate the wreckage. Rescue personnel aboard a HH-60G helicopter were able to reach the site later that morning, and confirmed the pilot was deceased.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC), along with an additional NTSB investigator, a FAA inspector, and a representative of the operator reached the accident site on the morning of October 17. The wreckage was located in an area of level, tree covered terrain. A postaccident fire consumed a majority of the airplane. Portions of the fragmented airplane were scattered along a debris path oriented along a magnetic heading of 130 degrees, and measured about 240 feet from the point of initial impact to the furthest piece of wreckage. A detailed wreckage exam is pending following recovery.

The closest weather reporting station to the accident site is the Skwentna Airport, Skwentna, Alaska, about 22 miles west. About 63 minutes before the accident, at 1452, a weather observation was reporting, in part: Wind, 350 degrees (true) at 10 knots, gusting to 18 knots; visibility, 15 statute miles; sky condition, scattered at 1,500 feet, 3,000 feet overcast; temperature, 30 degrees F; dew point, 23 degrees F; altimeter, 29.11 inches Hg


 ANCHORAGE, Alaska—

Alaska State Troopers have identified an Anchorage pilot who was found dead in the wreckage of a crashed cargo plane near Skwentna Tuesday.

Peter B. Iversen Sr., 62, was positively identified by troopers at the scene of the twin-propeller C-1A Trader’s crash, according to an AST dispatch released Tuesday night. He was believed to be the only person on board the aircraft.

Troopers say Iversen’s next of kin and the state medical examiner have both been notified.

NTSB spokesperson Clint Johnson said Tuesday that personnel were being transported to the site of the crash, about 17 miles west of Willow, by helicopter.

Guard spokesperson Maj. Guy Hayes says the Trader was reported overdue to the 11th Air Force’s Rescue Coordination Center by the at about 7 p.m. Monday. An HH-60 Pavehawk helicopter was launched and its crew conducted a search using night-vision goggles but didn't immediately find the plane, which hadn't filed a flight plan.

An HC-130 search plane followed up Tuesday to continue the search after the Pavehawk returned to base, which ended with the discovery of the crash site after several hours. Members of the 212th Rescue Squadron's Guardian Angels were subsequently flown to the site.

"Once on scene, the Guardian Angels were lowered from the HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter via hoist into a wooded area that contained the site," Hayes wrote in a Tuesday statement on the crash. "Guardsmen identified the single occupant pilot, who was deceased."

The National Guard has transferred jurisdiction over the crash site to the NTSB and Alaska State Troopers.

No progress was reported Tuesday in another ongoing National Guard search for a Piper PA-18 Super Cub reported overdue Saturday on a flight from Soldotna to Wolf Lake near Palmer, which is being conducted by Civil Air Patrol units at Anchorage, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and Girdwood.

Grid searches have focused on Soldotna and Wolf Lake, as well as the flight path between them, and Alaska State Troopers have been consulted on the search. No trace has yet been found of the Super Cub or pilot Brendan Mattingly, who is believed to be its sole occupant.

Hayes says both the crashed Trader and the missing Super Cub were fitted with 121.5 MHz beacons, which don't allow satellites to track their locations like newer 406 MHz beacons.


Searchers on Tuesday found a pilot dead in the crashed cargo plane he was flying from Wasilla to an Interior mine, officials say.

The Grumman C-1A was flying on Monday to Nixon Fork Mine, about 32 miles northeast of McGrath, said National Transportation Safety Board investigator Chris Shaver. It never arrived, and authorities called the Alaska Air National Guard for help finding cargo plane, which was carrying fuel, Shaver said.

After failing to find the plane Monday night, rescuers located it Tuesday morning near Skwentna, about 60 miles west of Wasilla, and discovered the pilot, who was the lone occupant, dead inside, said Guard spokesman Maj. Guy Hayes.

The pilot's name has not been released, and the cause of the crash is unknown, as it is still under investigation, the NTSB said.

The C-1A took off from Wasilla about 2 p.m. Monday, Shaver said. By about 7 p.m., officials with the Federal Aviation Administration had been notified and were asking for help from the Guard, he said.

A helicopter crew in an HH-60 Pavehawk flew along the plane's flight path, scanning the ground with night-vision goggles, but they failed to locate the C-1A, Hayes said. The crew needed to take mandatory rest after other recent search-and-rescue missions, and since they hadn't found anything, they turned back, Hayes said.

Tuesday morning, the Guard's Rescue Coordination Center ordered the launch of an HC-130 Hercules with equipment to search for electronic signals. Shaver said the Hercules crew located the wrecked plane somewhere between Willow and Skwentna, 20 and 60 miles west of Wasilla, respectively. A Pavehawk helicopter carrying para-rescue jumpers was again dispatched to the plane, now with precise information about its location.

"The PJs hoisted down from the helicopter to a wooded area that contained the crash site," Hayes said. "They were able to identify the single occupant pilot, who was deceased."

Alaska State Troopers were en route to the crash site Tuesday in their helicopter, Helo 1, to confirm the pilot's identity. NTSB investigators would likely charter a helicopter Wednesday to get to the plane, Shaver said. Until then, the cause of the crash remains a mystery, he said.

Meantime, the search for a Palmer man flying home over the weekend from Soldotna continues. The pilot, Brendan Mattingly, is believed to have been flying a red, white and green Piper PA-18.

Hayes said neither the C-1A found crashed and Mattingly's PA-18 are equipped with newer emergency-locator transmitters, which would allow satellites to pinpoint their locations.

"They're just a lot more difficult to find," Hayes said.

Key Saitoti chopper parts ‘were replaced’

In Summary
  • An engineer who had been tasked with overseeing the maintenance of the aircraft, Mr Aristide Loumouamou, said the Vehicle Engine Monitoring Display (VEMD) was replaced in December 2011 while Engine Data Recorder (EDR) was also substituted on June 8.
  • Mr Loumouamou, a Congolese, said he also changed the batteries of the helicopter on June 8, 2012 but did not fill in the warranty form.
  • The engineer said he could not have allowed the helicopter to fly on June 8 onwards after a red light emerged indicating a failure of EDR but he received an e-mail from Eurocopter — the manufactures of the aircraft — that it could fly for 200 hours.
Two major components were replaced in less than a year in a helicopter that crashed four months ago killing Internal Security minister George Saitoti. 

An engineer who had been tasked with overseeing the maintenance of the aircraft, Mr Aristide Loumouamou, said the Vehicle Engine Monitoring Display (VEMD) was replaced in December 2011 while Engine Data Recorder (EDR) was also substituted on June 8.

VEMD is a simulation (reproduction) tool developed to provide a trainer with an opportunity to improve skills while EDR is the real time recording of an engine in a chopper at any given time.

Mr Loumouamou, a Congolese, said he also changed the batteries of the helicopter on June 8, 2012 but did not fill in the warranty form.

The engineer said he could not have allowed the helicopter to fly on June 8 onwards after a red light emerged indicating a failure of EDR but he received an e-mail from Eurocopter — the manufactures of the aircraft — that it could fly for 200 hours.

“Were it not for the e-mail, I could not have allowed the aircraft to fly,” he said before the commission headed by Lady Justice Kalpana Rawal that is investigating the cause of the accident.

Also killed in the June 10 tragedy were Prof Saitoti’s deputy Orwa Ojodeh, pilots Nancy Gituanja and Luke Oyugi, bodyguards Joshua Tonkei and Thomas Murimi. 
(READ: Kenyan ministers killed in chopper crash)

Mr Loumouamou, the 50th witness in the inquiry, added: “I could not question the e-mail from my manufacturer despite the red light and allowed the aircraft to fly.”

He said Ms Gituanja had also refused to fly the chopper but the e-mail was an assurance that she could do so.

Mr Loumouamou declined to answer most of the questions from lead counsel James Warui, saying his CEO - Fabrice Cognant - was better placed to do so.

He also denied that he was posted to Kenya to monitor the performance of VEMD.

The engineer said it was normal for such defects to occur in an aircraft and further denied the aircraft was a prototype (model) which was still undergoing tests.


http://www.nation.co.ke

Drunk man not allowed on plane

  • Smoke at the airport. Police attended. It was controlled burning of piles.
  • Intoxicated man being refused admittance on plane.  He was arrested for public intoxication.
http://www.terracestandard.com/news/174617611.html

Stillwater Regional (KSWO), Stillwater, Oklahoma: Airport Authority to discuss hangars Thursday

STILLWATER, Okla. — The Stillwater Regional Airport Authority discussed a possible new business for the airport in an executive session during September’s meeting.

The authority will meet at noon Thursday at the Stillwater Regional Airport terminal building.

The authority board didn’t take any action at September’s meeting and none is expected Thursday. A public vote is needed to act on discussions in an executive session.

“I don’t think anything is coming of this right now, sometimes these things take months to develop,” City Attorney John Dorman said.

The airport has contracts with vendors that provide fueling and maintenance, OSU Flight Center and a private flight school.

Also on the agenda is a discussion and possible action on “preplanning for T-hangar #3” at the airport.

Airport Director Gary Johnson said the airport has two T-hangars, each one can house 10 airplanes. Building another T-hangar would allow the airport to accommodate 30 planes.

The agenda states the authority will discuss pavement condition and possible evaluation of the terminal and adjacent parking aprons.

Johnson said the airport has a multiyear contract with LBR, Inc., an airport consulting firm for the evaluation. The firm is locally-owned and has offices at the Stillwater airport and at Wiley Post Airport in Bethany.

Reports from the airport director and staff listed on the agenda include  an air traffic control tower traffic count for September, a September fuel sales summary, a presentation and update on the airport’s parallel taxiway construction project and an air service development update.


http://www.stwnewspress.com

Gulfstream to add jobs in Brunswick, Georgia

Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. today announced plans to increase employment at its Brunswick facility by approximately 20 percent in the next year to support growing volume in completions work.  The site currently has 174 employees, including nearly 90 technicians.

 “Adding about 35 positions is significant growth for Gulfstream Brunswick and a boost to the community as a whole,” said Mark Burns, president, Gulfstream Product Support.  “As we grow, customers can continue to count on the personalized service Gulfstream Brunswick’s employees are known for and the outstanding interiors they produce.”

 Completions work includes the design, selection and installation of the cabin configuration and layout, furniture, seats, carpets and sidewall treatments, entertainment and communication systems and galley and lavatory fixtures.

 Gulfstream Brunswick, located at the Brunswick Golden Isles Airport, has approximately 55,000 square feet of hangar space. In 2011, its employees serviced more than 100 aircraft.


http://savannahnow.com

Jobs in an unlikely place: In bankruptcy, American Airlines seeks 1,500 new flight attendants

NEW YORK — Wanted: A few good recruits for an airline that’s seen better days.

To replace some of its departing staff, American Airlines will hire 1,500 flight attendants starting next month, with training beginning in January.

The airline said Wednesday that 2,250 of its flight attendants have taken $40,000 buyout offers to leave the company. Briefings on the buyouts were standing-room only, according to representatives of the flight attendants union. Sign-ups to take the offer, which were open to those who had been with the company for at least 15 years, ended Sept. 20.

The payments were part of a concessionary contract that flight attendants approved with the airline, which is trying to cut its work force and labor costs while it’s under bankruptcy protection. The buyouts were designed to reduce the need for layoffs at American, which had said it wanted to cut about 2,000 flight-attendant jobs. The company didn’t immediately say Wednesday how or when it would further reduce its ranks after hiring a new batch of 1,500 flight attendants.

The contract attendants voted on in August would impose tougher productivity rules but give the attendants a 3 percent stake in parent AMR Corp. after it emerges from bankruptcy protection.

American just asked Tuesday for another month to present its reorganization plan. If approved, it would push the deadline for that plan to late January.

American is operated by AMR Corp. and is based in Fort Worth, Texas. The company said Wednesday that it lost $238 million in the third quarter on employee severance payouts and other costs related to its bankruptcy.


Source:  http://www.washingtonpost.com

Open Doors Organization Launches Aviation Access Certification Program

SEATTLE, Oct. 17, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Open Doors Organization (ODO), the Chicago-based non-profit, today announced the launch of the first-ever Aviation Access Certification Program, designed to raise the quality of and standardize service by airline wheelchair service employees nationwide. Eric Lipp, executive director, introduced the new program at ODO's fourth biennial Universal Access in Airports Conference, being held October 16-18 in Seattle, Washington.

Airport wheelchair service employees who take this program will attain certification as highly qualified and trained professionals and be entitled to wear a special patch with the ODO logo. As certified professionals, they will help customers have a better experience through proper understanding of safe and courteous wheelchair assistance, thereby achieving higher customer satisfaction. They will also understand and be able to properly meet the needs of customers with sensory and cognitive disabilities as well as those of older travelers who may have multiple needs.

"Our aim in creating this new training and certification program," Mr. Lipp said, "is to help these employees do a better, safer job and to realize how valuable their services are, thereby enhancing the quality and experience for both customers and employees. Now there will be a gold standard that includes training that was developed by people with disabilities for people with disabilities."

The overall objectives of the Aviation Access Certification Program are to:
Train to provide high quality customer service
Utilize the human element of customers with disabilities in training
Emphasis safety as a key tenet
Minimize out of service training time
Minimize additional training hours and costs
Reduce customer service complaints
There will be two Certification Programs.
Initial Certification Program, ready for delivery in January 2013.
Recurrent Certification Program, ready for delivery in 2014.

Each Certification Program will have two versions: Certified Access Provider and Certified Access Trainer. Open Doors Organization will also launch a Certified Transfer Specialist Program for employees who specialize in the safe assistance and lifting of customers between wheelchairs, boarding chairs and airplane seats by mid-2013.

These training programs will incorporate people with disabilities in course development, specially-created video clips and also as trainers in the Certified Access Trainer Program. They will enhance and largely replace the training that is currently provided by individual companies.

Open Doors Organization, a 501(c)3 non-profit based in Chicago, is dedicated to opening doors for people with disabilities in travel and tourism. Best known for its groundbreaking research on the disability travel market, ODO has developed and delivered successful training programs and videos for not only the transportation industry--airports, airlines, trains, motorcoach companies and cruise lines--but also hotels, restaurants and cultural institutions. Please visit the ODO website, opendoorsnfp.org, for full details or call 773.388.8839.

Contact: Eric Lipp, 773.388.8839, ericlipp@opendoorsnfp.org

SOURCE Open Doors Organization

Regional agency grounds Fly Montserrat airline

BRADES, Montserrat (AP) Fly Montserrat Airways has been grounded after one of its planes rolled off the runway at the Caribbean island's international airport.

The Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority said Wednesday that the airline has been barred from flying in the region until it meets several requirements.

Fly Montserrat director Nigel Harris said the decision was made after a pilot rolled a plane gently onto the grass on Tuesday as a precaution after feeling a minor vibration on the runway. None of the seven passengers aboard were injured.

Fly Montserrat served nearby Antigua and Nevis daily.

http://www2.wnct.com

Aerospatiale AS 355 F2, C-FXGM, operated by Catalyst Aviation LLC: Accident occurred October 17, 2012 in Erwinna, Pennsylvania

NTSB Identification: ERA13FA026 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, October 17, 2012 in Erwinna, PA
Aircraft: AEROSPATIALE AS 355, registration: C-FXGM
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On October 17, 2012, about 0640 eastern daylight time, an Aerospatiale AS 355 F2, Canadian registration C-FXGM, operated by Catalyst Aviation LLC, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees and terrain shortly after takeoff from Brigham Heliport (4PN5), Erwinna, Pennsylvania. The certificated airline transport pilot was fatally injured. Dark night instrument meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The positioning flight, destined for Wings Field (LOM), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the operator, the pilot was scheduled to position the helicopter from a heliport located behind his home to LOM, where after fueling, passengers would embark for a local pipeline patrol flight. The pilot reported to the operator his intent to depart from the heliport via text message at 0637. No further communications were received from the pilot.

Several witnesses reported hearing the helicopter as it overflew the residential neighborhood about the time of the accident, and one witness observed two lights that she presumed to be the accident helicopter as they descended into trees behind her home. Each of the witnesses described the lighting conditions at the time of the accident as dark, and reported that visibility in the immediate area was restricted due to fog.

The accident site was located in a densely wooded area approximately 1,000 feet northeast of 4PN5. The initial impact point was identified by several damaged tree limbs about 75 feet above the ground. A wreckage path approximately 300 feet long, oriented roughly 350 degrees magnetic, extended from the initial impact point to where the main wreckage came to rest against a tree. The main wreckage was oriented on a westerly heading, and was largely consumed by a post-impact fire. Each of the three main rotor blades was accounted for at the accident scene, and all came to rest within 30 feet of the main wreckage. The tail boom was separated from the fuselage and was located along the wreckage path about 30 feet south of the main wreckage, with the tail rotor attached and intact.


 Douglas W. Brigham of Erwinna, Pa. 

Douglas W. Brigham, 52, passed away suddenly on Oct. 17, 2012. Born in 1960 in Wilmington Delaware Memorial Hospital and raised in West Chester, Doug was the beloved son of Richard T. Brigham and the late Margaret (Hoover) Brigham. Early in his life, he was an active member in the Good Fellowship Ambulance Club, which led to his lifelong passion of public service and law enforcement. He was a graduate of Colorado State University. At CSU he was a member of Campus Law Enforcement and then was a police officer on the West Chester University Campus in PA. He went on to become a Pennsylvania State Police Trooper and after 24 years, he retired at the rank of Corporal. While he served in many capacities, the most recent was in the aviation division. After his retirement, he was employed with Catalyst Aviation as a helicopter pilot. He was a member of the Delaware Valley Volunteer Fire Company, was Deputy Management Coordinator for Tinicum Township and a volunteer for Patient Airlift Services. Doug was a member of the West Chester Lodge #322, F. and A. M. Doug was the beloved husband of Lisa A. (Lemery) Brigham; brother of Katharine S. Brigham of West Chester, Ann Thomas of Louisville, Ky., Robert Brigham of Santa Monica, Calif. and Deborah Wray of Charlottesville, Va.; uncle of Stephen, Matthew, Nathan and great-niece, Samantha and his godsons, Nyle, Alex and Ryan Neumann of Lawrenceville, N.J. He is also survived by countless friends, many of whom he considered family. 

Relatives and friends are invited to his memorial service, 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20, at the Meeting House at the Westtown School, 975 Westtown Road, West Chester, PA 19382. 

Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Family Fund for Garrett Ross, ENT Federal Credit Union, P.O. Box 15819, Colorado Springs, CO 80935-5819. 

Arrangements by the Donohue Funeral Home, West Chester, 610-431-9000. Online at www.donohuefuneralhome.com.

http://www.legacy.com

 
IDENTIFICATION
  Regis#: CFXGM        Make/Model: AS55      Description: AS-355/555 ECUREUIL 2, TWINSTAR, FENNEC 
  Date: 10/17/2012     Time: 1030

  Event Type: Accident   Highest Injury: Fatal     Mid Air: N    Missing: N
  Damage: Destroyed

LOCATION
  City: ERWINNA   State: PA   Country: US

DESCRIPTION
  AICRAFT CRASHED UNDER UNKNOWN CIRCUMSTANCES. ERWINNA, PA

INJURY DATA      Total Fatal:   1
                 # Crew:   0     Fat:   1     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    
                 # Pass:   0     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    
                 # Grnd:         Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:    


OTHER DATA
  Activity: Unknown      Phase: Unknown      Operation: OTHER


  FAA FSDO: ALLENTOWN, PA  (EA05)                 Entry date: 10/18/2012 

View more videos at: http://nbcphiladelphia.com.


A retired Pennsylvania State Trooper crashed his helicopter in the Bucks County neighborhood where he lived on Wednesday morning. Doug Brigham flies in and out of his backyard in Tinicum Township and this morning, around 7 a.m., the chopper went down in a fiery crash on Uhlerstown Hill Road, just a few hundred feet from his home, killing Brigham. 

 Rescue crews and police are on the scene and so is the Federal Aviation Administration, which will investigate if this morning low cloud cover was a factor in the crash.

Brigham was a retired corporal with the Pennsylvania State Police, a member of the local fire company that responded to his crash and a member of the Tinicum Township's Department of Emergency Management, according investigators. He was also a volunteer pilot for Patient Airlift Services. He worked for a company called Catalyst Aviation.

Brigham once flew NBC10's own Vai Sikahema and Eagles coach Andy Reid to a benefit in the Poconos in May 2011.

Read more:
http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com

http://www.wfmz.com 

TINICUM TWP., Pa. - A former Pennsylvania State Police trooper was killed in a helicopter crash in Bucks County early Wednesday, officials said. 

The chopper went down and caught fire in the woods off Uhlerstown Hill Road, near Everbreeze Drive, in Tinicum Township, said officials, adding that the crash happened shortly after takeoff. Emergency crews said they got the call at 6:39 a.m.

Pennsylvania State Police identified the pilot as retired Cpl. Doug Brigham. No one else was on board.

Authorities said Brigham was also was a member of the Delaware Valley Fire Company, which responded to the crash site, and a member of the Tinicum Township Department of Emergency Management.

Brigham took off from a helipad in his yard on Everbreeze Drive, heading east, and crashed into a ravine 500 feet after takeoff, officials said.

Brigham worked for Catalyst Aviation in Medford, N.J.

The Federal Aviation Administration is handling the accident investigation.









Beechcraft A36 Bonanza, N121VP: Accident occurred October 17, 2012 in Wausau, Wisconsin

NTSB Identification: CEN13LA016
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, October 17, 2012 in Wausau, WI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/07/2014
Aircraft: BEECH A36, registration: N121VP
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot reported that, during the instrument landing system approach, the destination airport’s weather system was reporting conditions below approach minimums. However, he chose to attempt the approach and, if necessary, execute a missed approach and hold until conditions improved. He stated that he usually set the decision altitude and lowered the landing gear at the final approach fix and that he thought that he had accomplished this on the accident approach; however, he stated that he did not remember hearing the decision altitude aural warning. He added that, when he was preparing the airplane for a missed approach, he saw the hills and trees, which the airplane then impacted. The pilot reported no mechanical malfunctions or failures of the airplane that would have precluded normal operation. 

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's decision to attempt an instrument approach in meteorological conditions below approach minimums and his failure to properly execute a missed approach.

On October 17, 2012, about 0800 central daylight time, a Beech model A36 airplane, N121VP, sustained substantial damage when it impacted trees and terrain short of the runway during an instrument approach to runway 12 at the Wausau Downtown Airport (AUW), Wausau, Wisconsin. The pilot received serious injuries. The aircraft was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a business flight. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which operated on an instrument flight rules flight plan. The flight originated from The Waukesha County Airport (UES), Waukesha, Wisconsin, about 0720.

The pilot reported that as he neared AUW, the airport automated weather observing system was reporting conditions that were below approach minimums. He stated that he thought the early morning fog would be clearing, decided to attempt the approach, and if necessary perform a missed approach and hold until conditions improved. His written report indicated that he attempted an instrument landing system approach to runway 12. As he descended there was considerable glare reflecting off the tops of the low cloud layer below. 

Once he had descended into the clouds it became very dark and very turbulent. He stated that his usual practice was to set the decision altitude (DA) and lower the landing gear at the final approach fix. He stated that he believed that he accomplished this on the accident approach. He stated that he did not remember hearing the aural DA warning. He decided to execute a missed approach and began to configure the airplane. He then saw the hills and trees immediately prior to impact. 

In his written report, the pilot indicated that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures of the airplane. No mention was made regarding instrumentation failure or anomalies related to the instrumentation or avionics within the airplane.


 http://registry.faa.gov/N121VP

NTSB Identification: CEN13LA016 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, October 17, 2012 in Wausau, WI
Aircraft: BEECH A36, registration: N121VP
Injuries: 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On October 17, 2012, about 0800 central daylight time, a Beech model A36 airplane, N121VP, sustained substantial damage when it impacted trees and terrain short of the runway during an instrument approach to runway 12 at the Wausau Downtown Airport (AUW), Wausau, Wisconsin. The pilot received serious injuries. The aircraft was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which operated on an instrument flight rules flight plan. The flight originated from The Waukesha County Airport (UES), Waukesha, Wisconsin, about 0720.
-------------

A man injured in a plane crash Wednesday morning at the Wausau Downtown Airport has been transfered to another hospital, an Aspirus Wausau Hospital spokesman said this morning.

 Randall C. Pack, 62, of Muskego was listed in serious condition at Aspirus Wausau Hospital on Wednesday. Pack suffered non-life threatening injuries in the crash, according to the Wausau Police Department.

Airport manager John Chmiel said the pilot was the only person aboard the plane at the time of the crash. Chmiel described the plane as a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza that was headed to Wausau from the southeastern part of the state. The plane was scheduled for an 8:21 a.m. landing in Wausau and crashed on approach to the airport, Chmiel said.

Chmiel said the plane was on an instrument-led approach because of weather conditions and estimated the crash occurred between 8:10 and 8:20 a.m. The National Weather Service reported fog and mist with easterly winds at 6 mph and limited visibility at the airport at the time of the crash.

Angela Chmiel, part of the management team at the airport, said the airport was fully staffed at the time of the crash, and the pilot did not indicate a problem.

“We had no indication whatsoever,” Angela Chmiel said. “We just don’t know what happened, or how it happened. Hopefully, the pilot will be able to communicate that to investigators.”

Tony Molinaro, a spokesman for the FAA, said investigators arrived at the site of the crash Wednesday afternoon. He said more information might be available Thursday at the earliest.

The incident is the 27th aviation crash in the state this year, according to the National Transportation Safety Board website. There has been one fatality so far this year in Wisconsin. Before Thursday, single-engine Beechcraft planes have been involved in two crashes nationwide so far this year, neither of them in Wisconsin.

There have been few crashes in recent years at the airport. A pilot was uninjured April 21 when his biplane crashed into Lake Wausau as he approached the airport runway.

John Chmiel said rescue crews were called immediately after the crash, and airport personnel also called the National Transportation Safety Board and FAA. He said crashes, though rare, are difficult for fellow pilots and airport staff to deal with.

“It’s been just a really rough day. Thankfully, this kind of thing doesn’t happen often,” Chmiel said.

 http://www.wausaudailyherald.com






 
A squad car from the Wausau Police Department sits at the west end of the Wausau Downtown Airport, where a single engine plane crashed Thursday morning, Oct. 17, 2012 on approach to the airport. / T'Xer Zhon Kha/Wausau Daily Herald


 One man remains hospitalized after a plane crash Wednesday morning at the Wausau Downtown Airport. 

Randall C. Pack, 62, of Muskego was listed in serious condition at Aspirus Wausau Hospital on Wednesday. Airport manager John Chmiel said the pilot was the only person aboard the plane at the time of the crash.

Chmiel described the plane as a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza that was headed to Wausau from the southeastern part of the state. The plane was scheduled for an 8:21 a.m. landing in Wausau and crashed on approach to the airport, Chmiel said.

Chmiel said the plane was on an instrument-led approach because of weather conditions and estimated the crash occurred between 8:10 and 8:20 a.m. The National Weather Service reported fog and mist with easterly winds at 6 mph and limited visibility at the airport at the time of the crash.

Angela Chmiel, part of the management team at the airport, said the airport was fully staffed at the time of the crash, and the pilot did not indicate a problem.

“We had no indication whatsoever,” Angela Chmiel said. “We just don’t know what happened, or how it happened. Hopefully, the pilot will be able to communicate that to investigators.”

Tony Molinaro, a spokesman for the FAA, said investigators arrived at the site of the crash Wednesday afternoon. He said more information might be available Thursday at the earliest.

The incident is the 27th aviation crash in the state this year, according to the National Transportation Safety Board website. There has been one fatality so far this year in Wisconsin. Before Thursday, single-engine Beechcraft planes have been involved in two crashes nationwide so far this year, neither of them in Wisconsin.

There have been few crashes in recent years at the airport. A pilot was uninjured April 21 when his biplane crashed into Lake Wausau as he approached the airport runway.

John Chmiel said rescue crews were called immediately after the crash, and airport personnel also called the National Transportation Safety Board and FAA. He said crashes, though rare, are difficult for fellow pilots and airport staff to deal with.

“It’s been just a really rough day. Thankfully, this kind of thing doesn’t happen often,” Chmiel said.

Authorities have confirmed a six-seat plane crashed this morning on the west end of the Wausau Downtown Airport.

The male pilot was taken by ambulance to Aspirus Wausau Hospital with unknown injuries. Airport manager John Chmiel confirmed the pilot was the only person aboard the plane at the time of the crash.

Chmiel described the plane as a single engine Beechcraft Bonanza that was headed to Wausau from the southeastern part of the state. The plane was scheduled for an 8:21 a.m. landing in Wausau, and crashed on approach to the airport, Chmiel said.

Chmiel said the plane was on an instrument-led approach because of weather conditions and estimated the crash occurred between 8:10 and 8:20 a.m. The National Weather Service reported fog and mist with easterly winds at 6 mph and limited visibility at the airport at the time of the crash. Wausau Deputy Fire Chief Phil Rentmeester said investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration are expected to arrive on scene at 2 p.m. today.

> Chmiel declined to release the tail number of the airplane until the family of the pilot is notified, and said further information would only be released by the FAA.

The accident is the 27th aviation crash in the state this year, according to the National Transportation Safety Board website. There has been one fatality so far this year in Wisconsin. Before Thursday, single engine Beechcraft planes have been involved in two accidents nationwide so far this year, neither of them in Wisconsin.
 Authorities have confirmed a six-seat plane crashed this morning on the west end of the Wausau Downtown Airport. 

 One person is confirmed injured and that person has been transported to Aspirus Wausau Hospital. The severity of the person’s injuries are not known.

Wausau Deputy Fire Chief Phil Rentmeester said the plane crash was reported at about 9:30 a.m.

Authorities will not say how many people were on the plane at the time of the crash. Details of the cause of the crash were not immediately available.

Emergency responders are on the scene.

The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to arrive on scene at 2 p.m. today. 

Wausau (WAOW) - One man was injured after a plane crash just before 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to Wausau Downtown Airport Manager John Chmiel. 

 Chmiel says that the crash happened at 8:21 a.m. outside the fenced-in area near Wausau Downtown Airport.

The pilot was approaching the airport from the south. Weather conditions may have been a factor in the crash but it is still too early to tell, Chmiel said.

The pilot was the only person on board, according to Chmiel. He was taken to Aspirus Hospital with unknown injuries.

The FAA is expected to be on scene investigating at 2 p.m. Wednesday.

Emergency workers removed a portion of a fence to access the plane that was about 100 feet from shore.