Monday, June 24, 2013

Vectren Dayton Air Show attendance sees sharp decline (With Video)

Posted: 11:14 a.m. Monday, June 24, 2013

DAYTON —  Attendance at the Vectren Dayton Air Show took a sharp decline this weekend drawing just 23,000 people.

Air Show General Manager Brenda Kerfoot could not say whether it was the lowest attendance in the show’s history. The show, which typically draws about 70,000 people in a weekend, took a tragic turn Saturday when stunt performer Jane Wicker and pilot Charlie Schwenker were killed after the biplane they were in crashed while Wicker was performing an aerial wing walking act near show center at Dayton International Airport.

Kerfoot attributed the attendance decline to the scrubbed appearance of the Air Force Thunderbirds and all other active military aircraft because of federal budget cuts known as sequestration.

“We really think the low numbers are an effect of sequestration that it had nothing to do with the crash,” she said.

The National Transportation Safety Board has launched an investigation that could take six months to a year. A preliminary report on the crash is expected later this week.

Story, Video,  Comments/Reaction:  http://www.daytondailynews.com

Maule M-5-210C Strata Rocket, N17PR: Accident occurred March 09, 2013 in Woodinville, Washington

NTSB Identification: WPR13FA141 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, March 09, 2013 in Woodinville, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/08/2014
Aircraft: MAULE M5, registration: N17PR
Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Serious.

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 passenger reported that he could not remember if the pilot checked the fuel before the flight, but he remembered that, during the engine start, the engine turned over several times before it started. About 30 minutes into the flight, the engine started to sputter, and then it stopped; the pilot was unable to restart the engine, and the airplane began to lose altitude. The passenger recalled that he observed the stall warning light illuminate and that the airplane was in a turn, but he did not recall the impact.

One witness reported that he observed the airplane circle and that it appeared very low. Another witness reported hearing a "pop" sound and then a "puff" or a "sputter" and then seeing that the propeller had stopped. A third witness reported that he saw the airplane in a hard banking turn and that he could tell that the airplane "was going down." The airplane impacted a single-family residence about 16 nautical miles northeast of the departure airport.

GPS data revealed that the airplane made several course heading changes at varying altitudes and airspeeds during the flight. During the last 16 seconds of the flight track, the airplane turned left, which was likely indicative of the pilot attempting to make a forced landing to a nearby pond. The last GPS data were recorded when the airplane was at an altitude of 650 feet mean sea level and a groundspeed of 40 knots.

The airplane's previous flight occurred 102 days before the accident. During this period of inactivity, the airplane remained parked outside on an airport ramp exposed to inclement weather conditions conducive to the formation of condensation in the airplane's partially filled fuel tanks. No records were found indicating that the airplane had been refueled before the accident flight. Fuel was recovered from the airplane at the accident site. Analysis of a fuel sample revealed the presence of water. The fuel contamination likely resulted in the loss of engine power and the pilot's inability to restart the engine after the power loss. The pilot likely failed to maintain adequate airspeed following the loss of engine power. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain adequate airspeed following a total loss of engine power due to fuel contamination, which resulted in a stall/spin and subsequent impact with terrain.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On March 9, 2013, about 1445 Pacific standard time, a Maule M-5-210C, N17PR, was substantially damaged after it impacted a residential house following a loss of control while maneuvering at a low altitude near Woodinville, Washington. The certified private pilot sustained fatal injuries, while the sole passenger was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions existed for the local flight, which was being operated in accordance with 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. No flight plan was filed. The local flight departed the Renton Municipal Airport (RNT), Renton, Washington at 1431.

In an interview conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge (IIC) and a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspector, the right seat passenger who survived the accident, reported that prior to the flight he could not remember if the pilot had checked the fuel or not. The passenger stated that during the initial starting of the engine, the engine did not start right up, but that it turned over several times before it started; he said this was different from the other times he had flown with the pilot. The passenger further stated that after taking off and flying around for what he thought was about 30 minutes, the engine started to sputter, and then it completely stopped. He added that the pilot attempted to restart the engine, but it wouldn't start and that they were losing altitude. The passenger opined that he observed the stall warning light illuminate and that the airplane was in a turn, however, he did not recall the impact or the altitude they were at when the engine quit.

Several witnesses who lived in the residential area where the accident occurred submitted statements to a local law enforcement agency. One witness reported that he observed the airplane circle and that it appeared very low. A second witness stated that she heard a pop sound, then a puff or a sputter, and then nothing. She added that she could see that the propeller had stopped and then heard a thud. A third witness reported that he observed the airplane traveling in a northeast direction and in a hard bank and knew that it was going down. Another witness revealed that he observed the airplane in the distance make a right turn and appeared to be losing altitude; he did not hear or see the airplane impact the terrain.

According to data downloaded from the pilot's handheld GPS device that was recovered from the accident site, the airplane departed RNT at 1431, exited the traffic pattern on a left downwind, and proceeded to the northwest for about 12 nautical miles (nm). It then turned toward the southeast for about 7 nm, made a left turn to the north for about 4.5 nm, then another left turn to the northwest for about 3 nm. This was followed by a right turn to a heading of north, which it flew for about 4 nm. The airplane's cruising altitude during this portion of the flight, which was about 18 minutes in duration, was between 1,500 to 1,700 feet mean sea level (msl), with an average groundspeed of about 107 knots (kts). The recorded data indicates that about 1449, the airplane made a left turn from heading of north to the southwest, which was in the direction of the departure airport (RNT). At 1449:43, the airplane's heading, altitude, and groundspeed were 245 degrees, 1,400 feet msl, and 92 kts, respectively.
The airplane proceeded on the southwesterly course for about 3.3 nm at an altitude of about 1,500 feet msl, and an average groundspeed of about 95 kts. At 1451:36, while still heading southwest, the airplane's groundspeed had decreased 5 kts to 91 kts, and at 1451:41, 5 seconds later, its groundspeed decreased further to 69 kts; the airplane then began a slow descending turn to the right. The airplane completed the right turn to a northeast heading of 030 degrees, now at an altitude of 1,421 feet msl, and a groundspeed of 62 kts. The airplane then proceeded northeast for about 0.5 nm, having descended to an altitude of about 1,000 feet msl, or about 573 feet above ground level (agl) at 1452:31; its groundspeed was now recorded as 56 knots. At this time the airplane was about 200 feet west laterally of a clearing, which was mostly occupied by a fish pond. The clearing was about 2,150 feet in length (east to west) and about 700 feet in width (north to south). Additionally, at this time that the airplane started a left turn from a heading of 070 degrees, which resulted in the following: at 1452:35, the airplane was 591 feet agl on a heading of 029 degrees, and a groundspeed 57 kts; at 1452:38, altitude 584 feet agl, heading 345 degrees, groundspeed 57 kts; at 1452:41, altitude 579 feet agl, heading 300 degrees, groundspeed 52 kts; at 1452:44, altitude 573 agl, heading 259 degrees, groundspeed 43 kts, and at 1452:47, which was when the final data was recorded, the airplane's altitude was 569 feet agl, its heading was 202 degrees, and its recorded groundspeed was 40 kts.

The main wreckage was located with its engine and cockpit partially inside the garage of a residential home. The airplane initially impacted a van that was parked on the west side of the home's driveway with its left wing. The wing subsequently separated from the fuselage and came to rest about 20 feet west of the main wreckage. The aft fuselage came to rest oriented upwards at about a 30-degree angle oriented in a northwesterly direction, the same direction from which the airplane had approached the residence prior to impact. The aft fuselage was only slightly damaged. The forward cabin and cockpit areas sustained extensive impact damage. The right wing remained attached to the airplane and was found positioned upward at about 45-degree angle and oriented toward the northeast. All airplane components necessary for flight were identified and accounted for at the accident site.

The airplane was recovered to a secured salvage facility for further examination.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 45, held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. He was issued a third-class Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airman medical certificate on September 25, 2012, without limitations.

A review of the pilot's personal pilot logbooks revealed that as of November 27, 2012, which was the date of the last entry, the pilot had accumulated a total of 946.3 hours, of which 897.3 hours were as pilot-in-command, 110.7 hours were in the same make and model as the accident airplane, and 668 hours of tail wheel time. The pilot successfully completed his most recent flight review on September 7, 2012.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The single-engine, high-wing, airplane was manufactured in 1975, and was equipped with a Teledyne Continental Motors (TCM) IO-360-D fuel injected engine. It was also equipped with a McCauley constant speed propeller.

A review of the airplane's maintenance records revealed that the most recent annual inspection was performed on July 26, 2011, at an engine total time of 1,802.2 hours, a time since major overhaul of 153.0 hours, and a tachometer time of 3,107.6 hours. At the time of the accident the tachometer read 3,143.7.

The investigation revealed no record of the pilot having flown the accident airplane from the date of his last pilot logbook entry, November 27, 2012, until the day of the accident, March 9, 2013; this accounts for 102 days inactivity. On November 27th, according to the pilot's logbook, he made a local flight of 1.3 hours. A search of fueling records during the investigation revealed that the pilot did not refuel subsequent to the previously referred to flight. It was additionally reported by a family member that the airplane was not stored in a hangar, and remained tied down outside on the ramp at RNT where it was based.

METEROROLOGICAL INFORMATION

At 1453, the RNT weather reporting facility, which was located about 16 nautical miles (nm) south-southwest of the accident site, reported wind 170 degrees at 5 knots, visibility 10 miles, sky clear, temperature 13 degrees Celsius (C), dew point 0 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 30.44 inches of mercury.

At 1453, the weather reporting facility located at Paine Field (PAE), Everett, Washington, which was located about 14 nm northwest of the accident site, reported wind 290 degrees at 5 knots, visibility 10 miles, temperature 9 degrees C, dew point 2 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 30.43 inches of mercury.

It was revealed during the investigation that the total monthly rainfall for the months of November 2012 through March of 2013 were as follows:

November 2012 - 8.28 inches
December 2012 - 6.85 inches
January 2013 - 4.16 inches
February 2013 - 1.58 inches
March 2013 - 2.74 inches

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The airplane came to rest partially inside a garage in a residential area, which was located about 16 nm north-northwest of RNT, the departure airport. The airplane's initial impact was with a personal van that was parked on the adjacent driveway; the airplane had impacted the van with its left wing, which was separated during the impact sequence. The airplane's measured magnetic impact and at rest heading was 110 degrees. The airplane came to rest inverted and partially laying on its right forward cabin area, with the aft fuselage and empennage being supported by the airplane's left elevator and left horizontal stabilizer.

The left wing, which separated from the airplane after impacting a vehicle parked in the residence's driveway, was observed lying inverted about 20 feet west of the main wreckage. The outboard one-third of the wing was observed to have impacted the vehicle, and the leading edge of the wing section was crushed aft. The associated flap remained attached at both attach points, while the inboard 18 inches of the flap was observed bent inward and downward. The flap was also observed deformed at the mid-span area. The left aileron remained attached to the trailing edge of its associated wing at both attach points. The fuel tank was destroyed. The outboard fuel cap was observed in place and secure, while the main fuel cap was not observed.

The right wing, which remained attached to the fuselage at all root attach points, was observed wrinkled on both the top and bottom surfaces. The associated flap and aileron both remained attached to the wing at all attach points, and exhibited minimal damage. The right wing tip was bent and twisted due to impact forces. Neither the inboard fuel tank nor the outboard auxiliary fuel tank were breached. Both fuel caps were secure and in place. About 5 gallons of fuel was captured from the fuel tanks for analysis.

The airplane's empennage sustained only slight damage. The left elevator remained attached to the left horizontal stabilizer at all attach points, and the stabilizer remained attached to the fuselage at all attach points. Additionally, the right elevator remained attached to the right horizontal stabilizer at all attach points, and the stabilizer remained attached to the fuselage at all attach points, with no damage observed to any of the components. The airplane's rudder remained attached to the vertical stabilizer and was not damaged. There was also no damage noted to the vertical stabilizer. The rudder trim tab was observed deflected full right, not damaged, and attached to the rudder at all attach points. The tail wheel assembly was observed intact and not damaged.

The airplane's engine came to rest just inside the garage of the subject residence, upright and laying slightly on its left side. The engine was subsequently recovered and examined at a secured storage facility

An onsite examination of all control cables revealed that each remained attached to their respective control surfaces. Control continuity from the control surfaces to the cockpit controls was confirmed.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the pilot by the King County Medical Examiner's Office, Seattle, Washington. The cause of death was attributed to blunt force injury to head, torso, and extremities.

Forensic toxicology was performed on specimens obtained from the pilot by the FAA Forensic Toxicology Research Team CAMI, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The toxicology report states that tests for cyanide were not performed. No ethanol was detected in urine, no carbon monoxide detected in blood, and no drugs detected in urine.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

Engine Examination

The engine was recovered from the accident site, and examined by the NTSB IIC and a representative from Continental Motors, Inc. The examination revealed the following:

The accessory end of the engine was displaced aft into the aircraft firewall. All accessories remained attached to the accessory section though they sustained varying degrees of impact-related damage. The oil sump sustained impact-related scraping damage. The oil cooler remained intact and attached to the aft end of the engine. The oil filler cap was found free from the filler neck but remained attached to the connecting chain. The filler neck was displaced forward due to deformation damage to the cooling baffling. Removal of the oil quantity dipstick revealed about 4 quarts of oil remained in the oil sump. There was no evidence of a pre-impact oil leak on the engine or the airframe.

All of the cylinders remained attached and secured to the engine crankcase. The #6 cylinder
sustained impact damage to the cylinder head exposing the intake and exhaust valve springs. The exhaust riser for the #6 cylinder was also separated from the cylinder. The left side exhaust system displayed impact-related deformation.

There was no external evidence of a catastrophic damage. Rotation of the propeller resulted in
thumb compression in all six cylinders; confirming crankshaft continuity. Rotation of the propeller also resulted in camshaft continuity as all of the rocker arms and valves operated normally, with the exception of the #6 cylinder's exhaust and intake valves. A borescope examination of each of the cylinders revealed no evidence of operational anomalies.

The fuel system, from the gascolator filter to the fuel manifold, was examined. The gascolator drain was fractured from the base of the gascolator bowl. The bowl was removed and a fine, sand-like debris was adhering to one side of the cylindrical wall. The laminated disk filter element was intact and did not show any visual signs of blockage. When electric power was supplied to the electric boost pump, the pump could be heard operating and a residual spray of fuel could be observed exiting the pump outlet. The fuel line between the electric boost pump and the engine-driven fuel pump was empty. The engine-driven fuel pump remained attached and secured to the front right side of the crankcase. The mixture cable was separated from the mixture control lever on the fuel pump and the mixture lever was in the idle-cutoff position. Blue discoloration was noted at the base of the low pressure relief valve adjustment screw. Fuel was present in the line between the fuel pump and the fuel metering unit on the throttle body; the fuel was drained into a glass jar. Fuel was also present in the line between the metering unit and the manifold valve. Fuel was also found in the manifold valve. A water detection paste was placed in the fuel found in the manifold valve, with no change in paste coloration noted. The manifold valve plunger and plunger seal contained a small amount of beige sludge. The screen was not covered with the sludge.

The fuel recovered from the engine fuel supply lines was tinted blue, but also displayed a fine, charcoal grey sedimentation that did not settle out of the fuel sample. There was also a small drop of beige water found in the fuel sample.

The engine-driven fuel pump was removed from its mounting pad and its drive coupling was found intact. Manual rotation of the coupling while installed in the fuel pump resulted in rotation of the pump with no binding noted. The bronze mixture control lever remained secured to its control shaft.

The throttle body remained intact and attached to the topside of the engine crankcase. The manifold pressure reference line to the cockpit instrumentation remained intact. The metering unit remained attached to the throttle body and the throttle control lever remained connected to the control cable and to the throttle shaft. The throttle valve was found in the full open position. Manual manipulation of the throttle control cable resulted in a corresponding movement of the throttle valve.

Fuel Testing

About 5 gallons of aviation fuel was recovered from the right wing's fuel tanks for analysis. The fuel testing was performed by an independent, third-party laboratory. A copy of the fuel test report for a fuel sample from the accident airplane was submitted to the NTSB Materials Laboratory for review by an NTSB chemist. The chemist's analysis revealed the following:

All tests were found to be within specification with three exceptions: 1) Potential Gum (ASTM D873) which was found to be higher than the specification; 2) Reid Vapor Pressure (ASTM
D5191) which was found to be lower than the specification and 3) Distillation (D86) temperature at 10% evaporated volume was found to be higher than the specification. These out-of-range results are consistent with aged fuel or fuel that had been exposed to air for a period of time (i.e. sitting in an aircraft fuel tank). The low Reid vapor pressure could also have been a result of the sample container.

In addition, the fuel was tested for interstitial (absorbed) water using ASTM D6304
(Water by Karl Fischer). This test does not have a pass/fail range. The result for the
accident sample found 113 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) of water present within the fuel sample. The presence of water within fuel can become an issue when the
absorbed water separates from the fuel. Changes in temperature can cause absorbed
water to separate out and can lead to icing within the fuel system under the certain
environmental conditions. (Refer to Materials Laboratory Factual Report No. 13-077 for the fuel testing review and attached reports, which is appended to the docket for this accident.)

Garmin GPSMAP 496 Device

The device was taken into custody by the NTSB IIC at the accident and subsequently sent to the NTSB Vehicle Recorder Division, Washington, D.C., for examination by a Vehicle Recorder Specialist. The Specialist reported the following:

The Garmin GPSMAP 496 is a battery-powered portable 12-channel GPS receiver. A flight record is triggered when groundspeed exceeds 30 knots and altitude exceeds 250 feet, and ends when groundspeed drops below 30 knots for 10 minutes or more.

The Specialist reported that upon arrival, an exterior examination revealed that the unit had sustained impact damage which compromised the LCD screen. Data was extracted using the manufacturer's software normally and without difficulty.

The Specialist's report indicated that the recorded data ended at 1452:47 PST, at 650 feet GPS altitude. Local altitude at the last recorded GPS position location was 569 feet as reported by Google Earth. Groundspeed was computed by the download software using time-tagged position location information. The average groundspeed between the last two recorded GPS track points was 40 knots. Ninety seconds prior to the last recorded position update, and just after the track crossed a road named Tolt Pipeline Train, aircraft ground speed began decaying from a steady cruise speed of approximately 97 knots.



 

CHENEY, Wash.--A local teenager was the only survivor of a March plane crash in Western Washington. The plane crashed into a garage killing the pilot. 

"Propeller just went out,” said Aiden Hubbard.  "That's when I knew we were falling and there was no way to get out of this."

"I remember waking up and being upside down and hanging out of the plane," said Hubbard.

It has been nearly four months since Aiden Hubbard survived a catastrophic plane crash.

The Cheney High School freshman and his uncle Jay Uusitalo were flying in a small, personal aircraft over the Puget Sound, while the family was visiting relatives in the Seattle area.

"There were absolutely no clouds in the sky," Hubbard recalled. "You could see everything, from the mountains to the coast. Just absolutely beautiful."

But suddenly, the propeller stalled.

"The light went on,” said Hubbard. That's when I knew we were falling. And there was no way out of this."

The two began to freefall. 700 feet. Hubbard said it took less than 15 seconds to reach the ground. The tiny plane plunged into the side of a house. Hubbard said much of it was a blur, but the last thing he remembers is crystal clear.

"Jay throwing himself across me, and taking most of the blow,” he said. “The whole entire right side of his body was broken. And that's where it would have hit me if he wasn't there."

Uusitalo did not survive the crash.

Hubbard broke his back, but was miraculously alive. Doctors immediately performed a rare partial fusion spinal surgery. He spent weeks at Harborview Medical Center, but surgeons say the teen should fully recover within the next year.

His mother, Heather Hubbard, says she still struggles to believe that her son survived. She said the community support is what carried her through the crisis.
                     
"We just felt small and didn't know what to do,” she said.

And from the moment of crisis, there were people that were there and doing what was needed.

Neighbors, church members, and even perfect strangers donated money and time to help the Hubbard family.

Some offered to watch Heather's younger children so she take Aiden to doctors appointments. Others delivered home-cooked meals to their door, and Cheney high school students held a fundraiser to help defray medical expenses.

"Since we've been back," she said. "It's been a huge blessing to have so many people meeting needs that we didn't even know we had."

Another group of supporters made 1,000 paper cranes for the family.
         
"Every one of those cranes helps," she said. "Every effort. Every thought."

And Aiden says the generosity has him giving thanks for the entire experience, despite his loss.

"There's no measure of gratefulness or thanks that we could say."

The 15-year-old is currently on restricted movement, while his back heals. He was only allowed to carry the weight of a milk jug, which he admits has been hard.

"My mom doesn't let me do anything," said Hubbard.

His mother agreed that it has been an adjustment.

"The physical limitations are difficult,” she said. “Because he's an active guy, and now he's not allowed to be.”

Hubbard will have to endure another spinal surgery this fall, to remove the rods and pins that are currently supporting his spine. However, he said each milestone he makes in physical therapy is a constant reminder of how far he has come.

"Plane crashes are not something that you walk away from. It's just not something you survive," said Hubbard.

Now, because of his uncle's sacrifice, Hubbard is determined not just to survive, but also to thrive.

“He was a great man,” added Hubbard. And he will always be a great example in my life."  


Story, Video, Photo Gallery:  http://www.krem.com

CHENEY, Wash.--A local teenager was the only survivor of a March plane crash in Western Washington. The plane crashed into a garage killing the pilot. 

"Propeller just went out,” said Aiden Hubbard.  "That's when I knew we were falling and there was no way to get out of this."

Coming up on Thursday, June 27th, Hubbard sits down with KREM 2 News and describes what it was like to fall 700 feet to the ground. He also described the extraordinary moment that saved his life just seconds before impact.

Hubbard, 15, was a freshman at Cheney High School when the crash happened in March 2013.

He suffered head injuries, burns and a broken spine during the crash which killed his 45-year-old uncle. 


Source:  http://www.krem.com

Related:  http://www.kathrynsreport.com

 

 NTSB Identification: WPR13FA141 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, March 09, 2013 in Woodinville, WA
Aircraft: MAULE M5, registration: N17PR
Injuries: 1 Fatal,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 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 March 9, 2013, about 1445 Pacific standard time, a Maule M-5-210C, N17PR, was substantially damaged after it impacted a residential house following a loss of control while maneuvering at a low altitude near Woodinville, Washington. The certified private pilot sustained fatal injuries, while the sole passenger was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions existed for the local flight, which was being operated in accordance with 14 Code of Federal Regulation Part 91, and a flight plan was not filed. The local flight departed the Renton Municipal Airport (RNT), Renton, Washington at 1431.

Several witnesses who lived in the residential area where the accident occurred submitted statements to a local law enforcement agency. One witness reported that he observed the airplane circle and that it appeared very low. A second witness stated that she heard a pop sound, then a puff or a sputter, and then nothing. She added that she could see that the propeller had stopped and then heard a thud. A third witness reported that he observed the airplane traveling in a northeast direction and in a hard bank and knew that it was going down. Another witness revealed that he observed the airplane in the distance make a right turn and appeared to be losing altitude; he did not hear or see the airplane impact terrain.

The main wreckage was located with its engine and cockpit partially inside the garage of a residential home. The airplane initially impacted a van that was parked on the west side of the home’s driveway with its left wing. The left wing separated from the fuselage and came to rest about 20 feet west of the main wreckage. The aft fuselage came to rest oriented upward at about a 30-degree angle oriented in a northwesterly direction, the same direction from which the airplane had approached the residence prior to impact. The aft fuselage was only slightly damaged. The forward cabin and cockpit areas sustained extensive impact damage. The right wing remained attached to the airplane and was found positioned upward at about a 45-degree angle and oriented toward the northeast. All airplane components necessary for flight were identified at the accident site.

The airplane was recovered to a secured salvage facility for further examination.

NORAD plans Wednesday training flights east of Denver

If you live east of Denver, you may get a free air show Wednesday as aircraft from the North American Aerospace Defense Command fly overhead during a training exercise.

The training flights are planned to test NORAD’s ability to deal with aerial threats. NORAD is headquartered at Peterson Air Force Base.

The flights will involve F-15 interceptors and C-21 transport planes, NORAD said in a news release. The flights are planned to take place between 3:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.

NORAD has been monitoring domestic air traffic since the 9/11 attacks.

“Since Sept. 11, 2001, NORAD fighters have responded to more than 3,400 possible air threats in the United States, Canada and Alaska,” the command said in a news release.

Airport employee sent to prison for smuggling heroin

Rolin Eli Escober, 50, of Humble, has been ordered to prison for nine years following his conviction of possessing with intent to distribute heroin, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced Monday. Escober pleaded guilty on Feb. 4, 2013.

Monday, U.S. District Judge Vanessa D. Gilmore, who accepted the plea, ordered Escobar to federal prison for a total of 108 months.

Escober was charged along with Elidia Molina, 34, of Houston, with using their status as airport employees to circumvent airport security measures and to smuggle more than 1.2 kilograms of heroin and 13 kilograms of sham heroin on Oct. 19, 2012.

Escober and Molina were employees of Express Jet and DAL Global Services, respectively. Court records indicate they conspired together to use their positions as employees at the airport and their knowledge of security to circumvent airport security and smuggle items in exchange for pre-negotiated sums of cash from an undercover Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agent who they each believed to be a narcotics trafficker.

Escober was arrested after successfully smuggling the heroin around security and returning it to the waiting undercover agents near the boarding gate.

He will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined ion the near future.

Molina also pleaded guilty and is set for sentencing on July 26, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Gray H. Miller. She was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.

HSI investigated the case in conjunction with the Houston Police Department Narcotics Division, Transportation Security Administration Office of Law Enforcement and the Houston Airport System. Assistant United States Attorney Mark McIntyre is prosecuting.


Source:  http://www.yourhoustonnews.com

Rockwell 690B Turbo Commander, Nighthawk Air LLC, N727JA: Accident occurred June 20, 2013 in McClellanville, South Carolina

NTSB Identification: ERA13FA295
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, June 20, 2013 in McClellanville, SC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/23/2014
Aircraft: ROCKWELL INTERNATIONAL 690B, registration: N727JA
Injuries: 2 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 purpose of the flight was for the pilot to accomplish a flight review with a flight instructor. According to air traffic control records, after takeoff, the pilot handling radio communications requested maneuvering airspace for airwork in an altitude block of 13,000 to 15,000 feet mean sea level (msl). About 8 minutes later, the air traffic controller asked the pilot to state his heading, but he did not respond. 

A review of recorded radar data revealed that, about 14,000 msl and 3 miles southeast of the accident site, the airplane made two constant-altitude 360-degree turns and then proceeded on a north-northeasterly heading for about 2.5 miles. The airplane then abruptly turned right and lost altitude, which is consistent with a loss of airplane control. The airplane continued to rapidly descend until it impacted trees and terrain on a southerly heading. No discernible distress calls were noted. The wreckage was found generally fragmented, and all of the airplane’s structural components and flight control surfaces were accounted for within the wreckage debris path. Subsequent examination of the engines revealed evidence of rotation and operation at impact and no mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. 

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:

The pilot’s loss of airplane control during high-altitude maneuvering and his subsequent failure to recover airplane control. Contributing to the accident was the flight instructor’s inadequate supervision of the pilot and his failure to perform remedial action.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On June 20, 2013, about 1648 eastern daylight time, a Rockwell International 690B, N727JA, was destroyed following a collision with terrain after an in-flight loss of control near McClellanville, South Carolina. The private pilot and the flight instructor were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to a corporation and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91, as an instructional flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan was filed. The local flight originated at Charleston Executive Airport (JZI), Charleston, South Carolina about 1633.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to accomplish a CFR Part 61.56 flight review. After takeoff from JZI, the pilots requested maneuvering airspace for airwork over the McClellanville area, at an altitude block of 13,000 to 15,000 feet above mean sea level (msl). About 1646, the air traffic controller asked the pilot to say his heading, and there was no response. Radar contact was lost and search and rescue operations were initiated. Based on a witness report, local responders found the wreckage within the boundary of the Francis Marion National Forest in Charleston County.

A review of recorded radar data revealed that, about 14,000 feet msl and about 3 miles southeast of the accident site, the airplane was observed in two constant-altitude 360-degree turns; the first to the right and the second to the left. The airplane then was observed on a north-northeasterly heading for about 2.5 miles, when an abrupt right turn, accompanied by a loss of altitude, occurred. At 1646:51, the radar track showed the airplane crossing U.S. Highway 17 at 12,100 feet. Concurrently, a keyed microphone could be heard on the recorded voice communications, with loud background noise that lasted for about seven seconds, and a single voice making an unintelligible sound similar to "ahhh…" The airplane was then observed entering a steep, descending left turn, losing about 7,500 feet in 28 seconds. The last radar return was at 1647:19, when the airplane was at 4,600 feet msl.

A witness, who was traveling southbound on Highway 17 at the time, observed the airplane in flight for "a couple of seconds." He observed the airplane in the left upper corner of his windshield. His car windows were up and he could not hear anything. When he saw the airplane, the belly was facing him and the nose was "completely vertical down" prior to it entering the trees. He observed both wings and the tail and he did not see anything missing from the airplane. No smoke was observed.

Another witness was working outside, at his residence, at the time of the accident. The airplane was "…either circling or looping and it did this for several minutes." The engine sounded "strained" and the "…engine speed was being changed." He then heard a "thud" and the engine noise stopped.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The private pilot, seated in the left cockpit seat, held airplane single engine land, airplane single engine sea, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane ratings. His personal pilot logbook(s) was not located after the accident. On his most recent FAA Class 1 medical certificate application, dated May 20, 2013, he reported 1,540 hours total time, including 106 hours in the previous six months. His total flight time in the accident airplane was not determined.

The flight instructor and airline transport pilot, seated in the right cockpit seat, held airplane single engine land, airplane single engine sea, airplane multiengine land, airplane multiengine sea, and instrument airplane ratings. He also held a flight instructor certificate for airplane single engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane. On his most recent FAA Class 1 medical certificate application, dated May 8, 2013, he reported 22,300 hours total time, including 75 hours in the previous six months.

The flight instructor's personal pilot logbook(s) was not located after the accident; however, an undated resume of his flight experience was provided to investigators. The resume listed a variety of type ratings and formal training courses completed, including FlightSafety International training in the Turbo Commander. The resume listed more than 5,800 hours in turboprop airplanes and more than 4,100 hours as a flight instructor.

Reportedly, the flight instructor had not flown with the pilot previous to the accident flight.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The airplane was a twin engine, high-wing, retractable landing gear, turboprop airplane, serial number 11399. It was powered by two Allied Signal TPE331-10T-516K engines rated at 776 shaft horsepower each. The engines were fitted with Hartzell three-bladed adjustable pitch propellers.

A review of the aircraft maintenance records indicated that an annual inspection of the airframe and engines was performed on March 4, 2013. The aircraft total time at the time of the annual inspection was 12,192.6 hours. The annual inspection was the most recent maintenance logbook entry in the aircraft and engine records.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION
The 1655 surface weather observation for Mount Pleasant, South Carolina (LRO) included few clouds at 3,400 feet, scattered clouds at 4,700 feet, broken clouds at 6,000 feet, wind calm, 7 miles visibility, temperature 24 degrees C, dew point 23 degrees C, and altimeter 30.14 inches of mercury.
The review of local weather data revealed no convective activity or thunderstorms in the immediate in the area at the time of the accident.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The accident site was situated on level ground on the grounds of the Francis Marion National Forest. The first point of impact was trees, then the ground. The accident site consisted of a swamp. The coordinates of the first observed impact with trees were 33.06239N, 079.52365W. The coordinates of the main wreckage (cockpit area) were 33.06193N, 079.52374W. The total length of the wreckage path was about 290 feet in length and 40 feet in width. The magnetic heading from initial tree impact to the cockpit was about 190 degrees.

Measurements of the path through the trees was consistent with the airplane in a right bank of about 42 degrees and a descent angle of about 21 degrees. The wreckage was generally fragmented. There was no fire.

All aircraft fuel tanks were breached during the impact sequence. There was a strong odor of jet fuel prevalent throughout the wreckage path.

The left engine was separated from the airframe during the impact sequence and was found adjacent to the cockpit area. The right engine was located attached to the right, inboard wing section that was separated from the main wreckage and crushed against trees during the initial impact sequence.

Several smoothly-cut tree branches were found at the area of initial tree impact. The disbursement of the branches was consistent with contact by both engine propellers.

The wreckage was recovered to a storage facility at Griffin, Georgia, where a detailed examination of the wreckage was performed. All major structural components of the airframe, including all flight control surfaces, were accounted for.

Flight control cable continuity could not be completely established due to the general fragmentation of the wreckage. Cable ends that were identified exhibited overstress indications or were torn from their attachment points.

The landing gear selector handle was found in the up, or retracted, position. The physical position of the landing gear could not be determined due to impact damage. The position of the flaps at the time of the accident could not be determined due to impact damage.

An external examination of the engines was performed during the wreckage review. No evidence of uncontained failure or in-flight fire was observed. The engines were shipped to the manufacturer's facility in Phoenix, Arizona, for a teardown examination under the direction of the NTSB Investigator-in-Charge (IIC).

The propeller assemblies were examined during the wreckage review. Both propellers had similar damage. Each one had the cylinder/piston fractured off. Both propellers were missing their spinners.

The left propeller was still attached to the gearbox; however, the gearbox was separated from the engine due to a fractured engine shaft. The propeller experienced damage due to impact and a power setting or blade angle could not be established; however, slight curved tips and some rotational scoring was noted on the blades.

The right propeller was still attached to the gearbox; however, the gearbox had separated from the engine due to a fractured engine shaft. The "R3" blade was fractured off the clamp assembly. All three blades had slight twisting signatures.

No anomalies were noted with either propeller assembly that would have precluded normal operation. For additional information regarding the examination of the propellers, refer to the Hartzell Propeller Examination Reports, located in the public docket for this accident.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

Pilot

A postmortem examination of the pilot was performed at the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina on June 21, 2013. The autopsy report noted the cause of death as "Full body blunt trauma due to General aviation collision with ejection" and the manner of death was "Accident.".

Forensic toxicology testing was performed on specimens of the pilot by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory (CAMI), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The CAMI toxicology report indicated negative for carbon monoxide, ethanol, and drugs. Testing for cyanide was not performed.

Flight Instructor

A postmortem examination of the flight instructor was performed at the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina on June 22, 2013. The autopsy report noted the cause of death as "Full body blunt force trauma" and the manner of death was "Accident.".

Forensic toxicology testing was performed on specimens of the flight instructor by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory (CAMI), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The CAMI toxicology report indicated negative for ethanol. Testing for carbon monoxide and cyanide was not performed. The report indicated that there was diphenhydramine in the liver and urine, pioglitazone in the liver and urine, and 47.3 ug/ml salicylate in the urine.

Diphenhydramine (Benadryl® or Sominex®) is an over-the-counter sedating antihistamine used to treat allergies and Sominex® is marketed as a non-prescription sleep aid. A determination of possible impairment was not possible since there was no blood available for testing.

Pioglitazone (Actos®) is a prescription oral antidiabetic agent that acts primarily by increasing uptake of glucose by peripheral organs and decreasing glucose production by the liver. It is used in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus. According to CAMI, the flight instructor had diabetes that was treated and controlled with oral medications and was issued a Class 1, Restricted Medical Certificate, not valid for any class after May 31, 2014. He had also lost an eye due to an injury years ago; however, he was evaluated at 20/20 visual acuity in his remaining eye during his most recent FAA medical examination.

Salicylate is a metabolite of aspirin, an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication to treat aches and pains, as an antipyretic to reduce fever.

The report also noted 127 mg/dl glucose in the urine. Postmortem urine levels above 100 mg/dL are considered abnormal. No blood was available for hemoglobin A1C analysis.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System

The airplane was equipped with a Honeywell Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS). The outer case sustained minor damage; however, the internal memory survived the impact. The unit was sent to Honeywell for download of the data under the direction of a NTSB air safety investigator. Although the unit captured the final portion of the accident flight, the data, according to the manufacturer, was not accurate. The position data was observed in the "dead reckoning" mode, indicating that the GPS data was invalid or went out of navigation mode. This resulted in significant inaccuracies in the aircraft position data toward the end of the recording.

Engines

The engines were examined at the Honeywell facilities at Phoenix, Arizona on September 16 through 18, 2013, under the direction of the NTSB IIC.

The teardown and examination of the left engine, S/N P-79794C, revealed that the type and degree of damage was indicative of an engine that was rotating and operating at the time of impact. Numerous indicators of rotation and operation were noted, including rotational scoring, ingested and burned organic debris, and metal spray adhesion. No pre-existing condition was found that would have prevented normal operation.

The teardown and examination of the right engine, S/N P-79792C, revealed that the type and degree of damage was indicative of an engine that was rotating and operating at the time of impact. Numerous indicators of rotation and operation were noted, including rotational scoring, ingested and burned organic debris, and metal spray adhesion. No pre-existing condition was found that would have prevented normal operation.

For additional information regarding the examination of the engines, refer to the Honeywell Engine Examination Reports, located in the public docket for this accident.


 NTSB Identification: ERA13FA295 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, June 20, 2013 in McClellanville, SC
Aircraft: ROCKWELL INTERNATIONAL 690B, registration: N727JA
Injuries: 2 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 June 20, 2013, about 1646 eastern daylight time, a Rockwell International 690B, N727JA, was destroyed following a collision with terrain after an in-flight loss of control near McClellanville, South Carolina. The private pilot and a flight instructor were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to a corporation and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as an instructional flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan was filed. The local flight originated at Charleston Executive Airport (JZI), Charleston, South Carolina about 1633.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to accomplish a CFR Part 61.56 flight review. After takeoff from JZI, the pilots requested maneuvering airspace for airwork over the McClellanville area, at an altitude block of 13,000 to 15,000 feet above mean sea level. About 1646, the air traffic controller asked the pilot to say his heading, and there was no response. Radar contact was lost and search and rescue operations were initiated. Based on a witness report, local responders found the wreckage within the boundary of the Francis Marion National Forest in Charleston County.

Examination of the accident site showed that the airplane collided with trees and then the ground. The total length of the wreckage path was about 290 feet in length and 40 feet in width. Measurements of the path through the trees was consistent with the airplane in a right bank of 42 degrees and a descent angle of 41 degrees. The wreckage was generally fragmented. There was no fire.

A review of local weather data revealed no convective activity or thunderstorms in the immediate area at the time of the accident. 



The wreckage of an airplane crash in McClellanville that killed two people on board on June 20.


What sounded like a scream was heard over the radio. Within five minutes, air traffic controllers had lost all contact with a pilot and a flight instructor aboard the turboprop plane that had been 15,000 feet above McClellanville. 



Minutes later, someone reported seeing a plane plummeting into the woods of the Francis Marion National Forest.


In the 10 minutes the plane spent in the air, something had gone terribly wrong.

When investigators found the wreckage, twisted metal and tree branches spanned 290 feet in a swamp, along with the bodies of the two men on board.

These final moments and other details about the fatal plane crash in June were released this month in a report by the National Transportation Safety Board, the agency investigating the crash.

The report details information about the flight, the aircraft, the wreck, the pilots' medical and flight backgrounds and other details that will be used to determine what caused the plane to crash.

The final report is expected to be released in the next three months, but a nine-page report released March 6 provides further insight into the accident that killed 44-year-old Patrick Eudy, of Mount Pleasant, and instructor Robert Ulrich, 69, of Bellevue, Idaho, on June 20.

Flight experience

It was the first time in the air together for Eudy and Ulrich, according to the report. Ulrich was a flight instructor and Eudy was trying to get recertified on flying the plane he owned, a 1977 Rockwell International 690B.

It was supposed to be a routine flight.

Eudy, president and CEO of the Matthews, N.C.-based telecommunications firm American Broadband, had spent more than 1,500 hours in the air as a pilot, according to the NTSB report.

It remains unclear how many times he had flown the eight-seat Rockwell that friends say he had owned for three or four years.

Ulrich had spent more than 22,000 hours in flight, including 75 hours in the six months before the crash, according to the NTSB reports. Nearly 20 percent of the time Ulrich spent in the air was as a flight instructor, the reports stated.

Ulrich had been issued a Restricted Medical Certificate after losing an eye to an injury, but his Federal Aviation Authority medical exam showed he had 20/20 vision in his remaining eye.

Ulrich also suffered from diabetes, according to the report, but the report does not indicate if his or Eudy's health played any part in the crash. Eudy and Ulrich tested negative for drugs and alcohol, according to the forensic toxicology results listed in the NTSB report.

The flight

Eudy and Ulrich departed from the Charleston Executive Airport on Johns Island at 4:29 p.m.

Either Eudy or Ulrich told air traffic control they wanted to do some air work and asked to fly at about 15,000 feet, according to a transcript of the audio recordings between the plane and air traffic.

About 15 minutes later, one of the pilots said they were doing 360-degree turns at about 14,000 feet and were going to be doing that for another 10 minutes, according to the transcript.

A map based on radar data indicates the plane did two 360 turns, the first to the right and the second to the left.

A few seconds into the second turn, one of the pilots said "thank you, sir" to air traffic control, which had approved the request to spend another 10 minutes doing turns.

That was the last recorded transmission known from the plane.

Air traffic control attempted to contact Eudy and Ulrich, but there was no answer and the plane disappeared from the radar, the report stated.

On the ground, a witness saw the plane doing the two 360-degree turns, then saw the plane abruptly turn right while starting to lose altitude, according to the report.

Radar showed the plane crossed U.S. Highway 17 at 12,100 feet.

Less than two minutes later, a loud background noise, which lasted for about seven seconds, along with a single voice making a sound similar to "ahhh" was heard on the radio, according to the transcript, but aviation officials could not determine what plane it came from.

Within seconds, a witness saw the plane turn left while dropping another 7,500 feet within 28 seconds.

A witness said the nose was "completely vertical down" before the propellers ripped through the trees of the forest and crashed into the swamp, according to the report.

The plane did not catch fire before, during or after impact, the report stated.

When first responders arrived, the smell of jet fuel filled the air.

The coroner later determined that Ulrich and Eudy died of full body blunt force trauma.

The plane

The twin-engine plane had been inspected three months before the crash, and the plane's two engines appeared to be working at the time the plane crashed, according to the findings by NTSB.

No problems were found with the propellers' assembly that could have led to a malfunction. Both propellers were missing a piece called the spinner, but NTSB did not indicate whether that occurred before or after the crash.

While the report appears to rule out certain possibilities for the cause of the crash and describes how the plane went down, it does not yet show why it went down.

NTSB officials said their final report detailing the cause of a crash is usually published one year after an incident.

 
Thursday afternoon (June 20), an airplane crash took the life of Pat Eudy, active owner and racer with his Melges 20, J/105, and Lutra 42, all named Big Booty. 

See more at: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com



McCLELLANVILLE — Federal investigators are combing through the wreckage of a small plane that crashed Thursday afternoon in a swampy area north of Charleston, trying to find out why the plane went down, killing two people on board. 

 Investigators with the Charleston County Coroner’s Office were on scene after dark and did not immediately release the identities of the two people who were killed.

Witnesses said a small plane was seen spiraling toward the ground just south of McClellanville around 5 p.m. Calls to 911 dispatchers sparked a massive search for the wreckage. The plane was found a couple of miles past the end of South Tibwin Road, in a former rice field near the Intracoastal Waterway.

It’s a swampy area full of alligators, snakes and mosquitoes. Searchers had to build temporary bridges between patches of high ground to get in with their all-terrain vehicles.

The plane apparently barreled through the woods for 140 feet. The damage path was 10 feet wide.

Deputies and rescuers reported smelling fuel at the site, but no hazardous material was spilled, Awendaw Fire Department Battalion Chief Fred Tetor said later.

The Federal Aviation Authority identified the plane as a Rockwell International 690B, an 11-seater with two engines.

The plane left the Johns Island Executive Airport at 4:30 p.m. on what was supposed to be a 53-minute flight to Georgetown and back.

Officials at the airport said two people were on board, including a person in flight training.

The last listed owner of the plane, dated in September 2011, was Nighthawk Air LLC of Matthews, N.C.

Motorists on U.S. Highway 17 called 911 to report seeing a plane going down near the Intracoastal Waterway.

Residents heard the crash.

Ruthie Merritt, who lives on Lofton Road, said she heard what sounded like a propeller plane in the air, then a loud noise.

“It was just one big boom,” Merritt said.

Russian Pilot Jailed in US Doesn’t Expect Fair Trial

MOSCOW, June 24 (RAPSI) – Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian pilot convicted in the United States, does not believe that he will receive a fair trial in a US court, he told Voice of Russia radio.

On June 10, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York rejected his appeal against a 20-year sentence for drug trafficking. The court announced that it considered the new arguments provided by the defense and ruled that they were unsubstantiated.

"The ruling was based on extremely weak arguments and does not answer our questions," Yaroshenko said. "My lawyer, Alexei Tarasov, is determined to continue his efforts to prove my innocence because we have a well-thought-out rationale that should expose the prosecutors' and the US government's lies. But frankly, I am starting to lose hope. I no longer seem to believe that we will reach justice, no matter how many facts we present to the court."

He said that he pins his only hope on the Russian government's intervention to secure his return.

"I expect more specific actions on the government's part," he said. "The US government has violated thousands of its own laws. My lawyer has pointed out multiple inconsistencies in my case, from the circumstances of my arrest to the treatment that I received in prison and the evidence fabricated against me. Thus, I am asking the government to demand explanations and to ensure my return to Russia."

Yaroshenko and Nigerian Chigbo Peter Umeh were arrested in Liberia in an undercover operation in May 2010. Shortly after, both were flown to the United States. In April 2011, Yaroshenko was sentenced to 20 years in prison for colluding to smuggle cocaine into the United States. He was caught after replying to an advert posted by DEA agents who claimed they were selling a cargo plane for $1.

Yaroshenko pleaded innocent during the trial. He said his poor English prevented him from understanding the nature of the deal. He said he did want to buy a plane, but did not plan to use it to transport drugs.

In mid-May, his lawyers forwarded their arguments to the appeals court. They insisted that the verdict be overturned due to a lack of evidence and asked the court to consider new documents about Yaroshenko being tortured in Liberia and illegal actions taken by US special services in Ukraine.

However, the court ruled that, in accordance with the law, neither cruelty on the part of the police nor kidnapping by government agents can be considered sufficient grounds for appealing a verdict.

Regarding Yaroshenko's alleged torture in Liberia, the court stated that it cannot force a foreign state to comply with procedure when delivering defendants for extradition.

As for the allegations that the evidence was unclear, the court said the conspirators may not have agreed on the size of advance payment under the $4.5 million contract, but they did agree on the planned criminal actions and the overall price. This was enough to establish "implied assent" between conspirators and to prove their collusion over the criminal scheme in general, the appeals court concluded.


Story and Photo:  http://en.ria.ru

East Hampton Village Preservationists Ask Board To Support Airport Noise Plan

Publication: The East Hampton Press
By Shaye Weaver,   June 24, 2013 10:49 AM
Updated:  June 24, 2013 11:43 AM


Amidst the ongoing debate about airplane and helicopter noise stemming from East Hampton Airport, the Village Preservation Society of East Hampton recently created a plan that would reduce the noise. Peter Wolf, the chairman of the group, presented the policy to East Hampton Village Board members on Friday, asking for their support.

The plan outlines four points for East Hampton municipalities to follow: Do not accept additional FAA money, limit flights to between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., reduce the frequency of operation, and do not allow flights to pass over water, which amplifies the noise.

Mr. Wolf said having the village on board would greatly influence the Town council members.

"As a planner I've dealt with land use planning in communities for many years, I know this is a ticklish issue and I know by requesting you pay attention and consider this proposal is outside out your boundaries, jurisdiction and comfort zone," he said. "Your silence on this issue is approval of the status quo."

Mayor Paul F. Rickenbach Jr. said the Village Board is very sensitive to the airport noise issue and that it is a hot button issue at the town level, and asked if the VPS approached the Town Board yet with its proposal. Mr. Wolf said they will go to Town Board next.

"The VPS is so closely aligned with the village that we wanted to come here first," Mr. Wolf said.

The mayor said while the board is supportive of what the group is trying to do, it will be up to the town to solve the noise issue.

"With respect to the posture of Town Board, I don’t see any resolution of some of these issues in the immediate future," he said. " In the long term, remediation will take place but will take place at the Town Board level. If there is sunlight at end of this tunnel this board would like to be a part of that as it is applicable to all town residents."


Story and Comments/Reaction:  http://www.27east.com

$2,000 netted by Fly-in and Breakfast: Desert Aire Airport (M94), Mattawa, Washington


Posted: Monday, June 24, 2013 9:05 am 

DESERT AIRE - About $2000 was raised again for support of the Desert Aire Airport by the desert air flying breakfast last Saturday morning.

Desert Aire Airport provides a measure of practical medical insurance to all of South Grant County. From there, emergency illness and accident victims can be flown by plane or helicopter to appropriate treatment facilities.

According to volunteer Linda Strand, wife of airport manager David Strand, about 485 plates of breakfast were served, generating donations of $2,875.53. Children ate free.

After expenses were deducted, there were about the usual $2,000 left for support of the airport. They will be used to maintain the runway, taxi ways and aprons.

According to Strand, volunteer cooks and servers put out nine boxes of sausage, 75 pounds of pancake mix, 72 dozen eggs, plus coffee, milk, and orange juice.

“It is always so much fun, however a tremendous amount of work,” Strand said. “And it certainly wouldn’t happen without the 30 volunteers who give it their all, from pre-planning and food purchasing, advertising, preparation of the hangar, Friday evening set-up of moving in tables and chairs, through 4:30 a.m. coffee making, cooking, serving and cleaning up afterward.”

“Also, thank you this year to ThinkTank Sanitation Services for supplying the all important port-a-potty. We really appreciate them.”

Those who came to breakfast were treated to one of the best Fly-ins ever. The weather was agreeable and favorable. Approximately 27 airplanes flew in from around the state, plus the MedStar Euro-135 Helicopter.

“A special thanks to Major Borwaski, 2-158 Assault Helicopter Battalion, US Army, from Yakima for joining us for breakfast,” Strand said.

Jim VanSky, with his Robinson R-44 helicopter, and his colleague with the MD300 helicopter, who are here for cherry harvest, joined the Fly-in for display to the public.

“Wasn’t the A-26 Fly-By something?” Strand commented. “Peter Hambling, pilot and owner, is wonderful for donating his time and resources to fly over in Sexy Sue just so we could enjoy some history of WWII.”



Source:  http://www.columbiabasinherald.com

Notice of Public Review/Comment and Hearing: Murfreesboro Municipal Airport (KMBT), Tennessee

Posted: Monday, June 24, 2013 10:24 am 

 NOTICE OF PUBLIC REVIEW,

COMMENT AND HEARING


In compliance with Federal Aviation Administration procedures the City of Murfreesboro has prepared a Draft Environmental Assessment (DEA) and Draft FONSI to support the construction of a 852 foot extension of the north end of the runway at Murfreesboro Municipal Airport. Copies of the DEA are available for public review and comment at the following locations: Murfreesboro Municipal Airport (1930 Memorial Boulevard); Linebaugh Library second floor Reference Table (105 West Vine Street); and, Murfreesboro City Hall (111 West Vine St) in the office of the City Recorder and the office of the Planning & Engineering Department from June 24th through July 26th, 2013. Written comments will be received by Hanson Professional Services, 53 Century Blvd, Suite 160, Nashville, TN 37214 until 4:00 pm July 26th, 2013 for transmission to the Federal Aviation Administration without alteration.       

A Public Hearing will be held July 16th, 2013 from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm in the City Council Chambers located in City Hall (111 West Vine Street, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, 37130).


Source:  http://www.murfreesboropost.com

Tankers on Doce fire took on slurry at Prescott Fire Center - Arizona

 
Photo Credit: Lisa Irish/The Daily Courier 
Phos-Chek Air Attack Team Jay Negri, right, and Todd Negri, left, show where they mix the fire retardant at the Prescott National Forest's Fire Center at the Prescott Municipal Airport.




June 24, 2013 6:01:00 AM 
Lisa Irish,  The Daily Courier

 
When an air tanker lands at the Prescott National Forest's Fire Center at the Prescott Municipal Airport, it takes Phos-Chek Air Attack Team Jay and Todd Negri just seven minutes to fill an entire load of up to 2,000 gallons of fire retardant weighing about 17,800 pounds.

"One time an air tanker came in, we filled it, and about 20 minutes later as we're filling another plane, it landed and I thought we just filled that one, he said yeah we did, and we filled it again so it could go out on another drop," Manager Jay Negri said.

Just outside the runway fence are the tanks with the fire retardant concentrate and the water it's mixed with. On the runway are two areas with a light red spatter, where they connect the hose to the planes' tanks.

"The first day (of Doce firefighting efforts) we filled four air tankers with 23 loads," Jay said. "We filled 27 loads the next day, and one load Friday when an air tanker flying from California to Colorado was diverted to help out on the Doce fire."

The larger air tankers fly out of Gateway Airport in Mesa, Todd said.

Planes will fly in to Prescott to pick up retardant to use on fires on the Prescott, Kaibab, Coconino, and Tonto forests, Prescott National Forest Assistant Public Information Officer Noel Fletcher said.

Since the Doce fire began, they've provided 109,000 gallons of fire retardant, Jay said.

The fire retardant is dropped just outside the fire and coats plants, homes, and other possible fire fuels in the fire's path with a red-colored chemical mixture designed to slow the fire by making those items less likely to ignite, Jay said.

The mixture includes iron oxide, which contributes to the red color, fertilizer, salt, a clay mixture and other items, Jay said.

"The fire retardant sticks to the vegetation and other fuels and helps the firefighters on the ground by helping cool down the fire and slowing it," Jay said. The retardant helps take away some fuel by making it less likely to ignite.

"The retardant is heavy, so before it's dropped firefighters are careful to go into the burnt-out black areas," Negri said. "We've heard that firefighters being splattered with it consider it a red badge of courage."

The first 100,000 gallons of retardant costs $3.60 a gallon, while the next 100,000 gallons is $1.20 a gallon, and pilot fees, plane, fire retardant and water expenses have contributed to the estimated to $4.3 million cost (as of Saturday) of fighting the Doce fire, Todd said.

Jay has been doing this for the past 22 years and has worked with his son Todd as his assistant for the past five years.

"This is our opportunity to provide support to the firefighters as they do their work, and help them save people, property and our community," Jay said. "It's exciting too. I get a huge kick out of seeing the air tankers. We've even had pilots thank us for our service."

They work from May through August, and their contract can be extended into September if needed.

"I feel like I'm helping to make a difference with what we do here," Todd said
.

Source:   http://www.dcourier.com

ORNGE helicopter involved in fatal crash lacked a ground proximity warning system that may have alerted pilots to imminent collision with the ground: Sikorsky S-76A, C-GIMY, Accident occurred May 31, 2013 in Moosonee, Ontario

By: Bruce Campion-Smith

Published on Mon Jun 24 2013


An air ambulance helicopter that crashed in northern Ontario killing four lacked a key piece of safety gear that may have provided an urgent warning to the pilots to “pull up” as they descended into a forest.

Several of the aging Sikorsky helicopters in ORNGE’s fleet had upgraded electronics, including a ground proximity warning system, but not the one that was based in Moosonee.

That left the crew of the Sikorsky S-76 without a potentially life-saving back-up as they departed on a midnight flight to Attawapiskat from their Moosonee base on May 31.

Their flight lasted barely a minute, crashing into the forest near the airport, killing the two pilots and two paramedics onboard.

Ground proximity warning systems have a visual display that maps high ground around an aircraft to assist with situational awareness.

And the system will also sound urgent aural alarms, such as “terrain, terrain, pull up,” when there is danger of hitting the ground.

Such a warning may have made all the difference to the crew of the Sikorsky chopper that crashed, one veteran pilot told the Star.

“I firmly believe it would have helped in that situation. ... The system would tell you you are in the wrong place,” he said.

Said another pilot: “If they had had it and they were trained properly, it would have absolutely saved their lives. Absolutely.

“There’s no doubt. That thing goes off like a crazy fire siren and you’re aware of it all of a sudden,” said the pilot, with years of experience in air ambulance flying.

While this aircraft lacked the warning system, ORNGE has put another of its S-76A helicopters up for sale, boasting about its “excellent” electronics, including a ground proximity warning system. It’s being sold for parts for $500,000 (U.S.).

That’s caused some ORNGE employees to question why the chopper in Moosonee wasn’t better equipped, noting it even lacked an autopilot.

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada has said there is no early indication of a mechanical problem that may have caused the crash.

Investigators have not ruled out the possibility this was a controlled-flight-into-terrain, when pilots lose track of their position — usually in conditions of low visibility or bad weather — and inadvertently fly into the ground.

The safety board has previously urged installation of ground proximity warning systems in fixed-wing aircraft to prevent just such accidents.

ORNGE spokesperson Laurelle Knox confirmed the helicopter that crashed was not equipped with such a warning system but said it was not required by Transport Canada.

And she said that Canadian Helicopters, which previously held the contract to operate the air ambulance choppers, flew the Sikorsky in the same configuration.

Transport Canada has since imposed new requirements for most commercial aircraft to install a newer, more sophisticated version known as the terrain awareness and warning systems.

These systems are designed to provide even greater warning to pilots of potential collision with terrain and give them time to take evasive action.

“These types of accidents often happen when pilots are unaware of the danger until it is too late,” Transport Canada said in a 2011 news release announcing the regulation.

The regulations apply to private turbine-powered and commercial airplanes with six or more passenger seats. A department spokesperson said Friday that the new rules don’t apply to helicopters.


Source:   http://www.thestar.com

Monroe County (KMNV), Madisonville, Tennessee: Will airport take wings for Monroe?

Published: 9:37 AM, 06/24/2013     
Last updated: 9:38 AM, 06/24/2013

Author: Michael Thomason

Source: The Monroe County Advocate

 

MADISONVILLE -  It ran quietly and efficiently for years, then Monroe County Airport Manager Larry Hamilton was charged with trying to shoot his nephew and the county found itself with an airport to run.

The county did not renew Hamilton's contract (though they've never given an official reason for that dismissal) and are now trying to figure out what to do with the facility that sits off Old Highway 68, just a couple of miles from Madisonville.

The county is running the airport, but that only goes until June 30 when a new fiscal year starts. Several companies recently put in bids to operate the airport, but an Airport Committee didn't like them, stating they were too vague.

"They don't really say what their financial situations are," said committee member Shan Harris. "They all say they're in good shape, but don't offer any details beyond that."

"If we need to run the airport for a while longer," County Mayor Tim Yates said, "we need to let the County Commission know how long it will be. Everything at the airport is in place and running well, so operating it isn't a problem."

See full story in the Sunday, June 23, edition of The Advocate & Democrat.
- See more at: http://www.advocateanddemocrat.com

Denver International (KDEN), Colorado: Flights diverted from airport because of storms

Posted: June 24, 2013 10:43 AM EST 
Updated: Jun 24, 2013 10:43 AM EST
 

DENVER (AP) - Several flights had to be diverted from Denver International Airport to Colorado Springs, Cheyenne, Wyoming, and other cities because of severe thunderstorms.

Denver International Airport spokesman Heath Montgomery says there were also a number of flight delays from the storms that rolled through the Front Range on Sunday night.

National Weather Service spokesman Byron Louis said Monday there were numerous lightning strikes, wind gusts of more than 20 miles an hour and 2 inches of rain on some parts of the Eastern Plains.

Hernando County Commission to consider radar system for Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport

Barbara Behrendt, Tampa Bay Times
Monday, June 24, 2013 9:59am 

 

BROOKSVILLE — New equipment designed to enhance airport safety will be recommended to the Hernando County Commission today by Don Silvernell, manager of Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport.

The STARS (Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System) Lite Radar System would allow air traffic controllers in Hernando to see the same radar images as those at Tampa International Airport in real time, giving local controllers a visual heads-up of aircraft heading this way.

Currently, Hernando controllers keep track of aircraft through a radio system until an airplane is close enough for the tower to spot.

The system comes with a $393,375 price tag, with the Florida Department of Transportation picking up $300,000 of the cost.

Airport critics last month urged commissioners to learn more about the radar system before spending so much money on what one termed "an antiquated system."

During the May 28 commission meeting, pilot Dave Lemon said he didn't think the system was worth the money. Noting that only an average of six airplanes fly into the airport each hour, he said "it will be half a million dollars by the time we're done ... so that they can see an airplane fly in and out of Tampa, not Brooksville.''

Pilot Robert Rey argued that the aviation industry is moving away from radar to a satellite-based system known as ADS-B, or automatic dependent surveillance broadcast. Other airports have turned the STARS radar system down for that reason.

At the time, commissioners decided to delay their decision. Meanwhile, Silvernell has been working with the Federal Aviation Administration to get the price of the system down. The cost the commission will consider is $45,000 less than the original asking price.

Silvernell dismissed the concerns about radar becoming obsolete. STARS, he said, "is the system the FAA is putting in towers.''

County Commission Chairman Dave Russell, also a pilot, said that the STARS system is compatible with new technology and he intends to support the purchase.

"It gives the air traffic controller the ability to see tactically what's going on and not just hear what's going on,'' Russell said. "It takes the guesswork out of air traffic control.''


Source:  http://www.tampabay.com

VirtualGlobetrotting: Cessna 402 in flight - Ward Cove, Alaska

June 23, 2013,  06:48:47 

Cessna 402 in flight:  http://virtualglobetrotting.com/map/cessna-402-in-flight/view

Pitkin County employees able to collect time off for good behavior: Aspen-Pitkin County Airport/Sardy Field (KASE), Aspen, Colorado

by Carolyn Sackariason, Aspen Daily News

Monday, June 24, 2013



About one-fifth of Pitkin County employees received extra time off last year totaling 769 hours with a cash value of $21,417, as part of a recognition program.

And this year through April, county department heads gave 11 individuals 268 hours of “administrative leave,” at a value of $10,656.

One of those distributions was from County Manager Jon Peacock, who gave 100 hours to airport director Jim Elwood in February. At a rate of $59.09 an hour, Elwood received $5,909 worth of time off.

The county allows employees to cash out up to 80 hours a year of their accrued time off, including regular vacation time and administrative leave bonuses.

According to finance director John Redmond, from 2009 through 2012, employees received $199,949 worth of administrative leave and $582,208 worth of vacation time.

County employees who have worked up to five years receive an average of four weeks of annual vacation time. After five years of service, county employees enjoy five-and-a-half weeks of vacation, according to the government’s website.

The county’s administrative leave program is a tool supervisors use to recognize an employee for outstanding work. Employees can nominate their co-workers for administrative leave, and it is at the discretion of the supervisor and the human resources director to approve the award.

Peacock said he gave Elwood the 100 hours in lieu of a $10,000 honorarium he received as part of the Jay Hollingsworth Speas Airport Award, which is co-sponsored by American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the American Association of Airport Executives and the Airport Consultants Council. He was given the award in recognition for his environmental leadership related to the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport’s runway expansion.

But because county policy does not allow employees to accept gifts, including cash for personal gain, Elwood could not take the check. Peacock decided that the airport director should be rewarded in some other fashion.

“It was an out-of-the-ordinary recognition and [with] Jim having to forgo the money, I thought it was appropriate,” Peacock said.

Elwood said he gave the $10,000 to the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies as a charitable donation for a project it’s working on related to decaying forests.

“Obviously it’s a cool honor, and we had a conversation about the best and right thing to do, since I am a public servant,” Elwood said. “It was nice to be recognized by the award and it was a special recognition by [Peacock] that it was unique.”

Elwood said he hasn’t used any of the administrative leave hours yet, especially since he is in the throes of developing an airport facilities master plan that could double the size of the Sardy Field terminal, expanding it to as much as 80,000 square feet.

“It’s been hard to take any time off,” he said.

Peacock said the county doesn’t have a bonus program and giving administrative leave hours is a way to recognize performance. And that was the case with Elwood’s award.

“Look, if he can get a chance to spend time with family then great,” he said. “It’s not excessively used.”


Read more here:  http://www.aspendailynews.com

Military's retreat makes Kingman air show a no-go

 

 6/23/2013 6:00:00 AM

KINGMAN - Kingman Air & Auto Show Inc. officials say the popular event won't be held this year.

"We are very disappointed that there will not be a show this year," Kingman Air Show President Andrew Raynor said. "The decision was made because of various factors, including the slumping economy and a complete lack of military support."

According to Raynor, the biggest part of the decision to cancel was due to what occurred last year with the military and its announcement recently not to support air shows during 2013.

Last year, the military committed to provide various aircraft for the 2012 air show, which the air and auto show officials advertised. At the last minute, the government cancelled the military's participation.

The United States government is not just cancelling military participation this year at smaller air shows such as Kingman's. They have also cancelled major air shows completely at various military installations, including Luke AFB in Arizona; Langley AFB in Virginia; NAS Corpus Christi in Texas; MCAS Beaufort Air Show in South Carolina; Dover AFB in Delaware; Hickam AFB Open House in Hawaii; and even Aviation Nation at Nellis AFB in Nevada, just to name a few.

Even though there won't be a full-blown air and auto show, Raynor indicated they may attempt to have a fly-in later this year as has been held in Bullhead City in the past.

For information about future Kingman Air & Auto Shows, visit www.kingmanairshow.com.


Story and Comments/Reaction:   http://www.kingmandailyminer.com