Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Greensburg Municipal Airport (I34), Indiana: Repaving bids come in low; Agreement to settle contractual dispute with family of late Don Horan

GREENSBURG — Bids for repaving work at the Greensburg Municipal Airport came in much lower than expected, the airport board learned Monday.

The lowest bid for the project, which will overlay most areas except the runway, came in at about $75,000, less than half of the expected cost of about $167,000. The low bid came from Dave O’Mara Contractor Inc. in North Vernon. The highest of the four bids came in at about $132,000.

Airport Board President Jon Dooley said after Monday night’s meeting at City Hall that he was pleased with the bids — though he said Airport Manager Jerry Scheidler will have to review all of the bids to make sure they are acceptable.

The airport board is expected to award bids at the next meeting. The airport has funds of nearly $300,000, including more than $100,000 in its operations fund.

Scheidler said that he expected that during construction the airport would be closed for probably four days.

The board also approved an agreement regarding the overlay with Butler, Fairman and Seufert Civil Engineers. Airport board member Oris Reece abstained from the vote, because he said he did not get to read the agreement before the meeting.

Scheidler also told the board that the airport’s recently installed upgraded jet fuel system is working well.

Airport officials previously have said that the old system was outdated and that the fuel supplier would no longer deliver fuel because of liability and contamination issues.

The new system pumps fuel from delivery trucks into the airport tanks at about 200 gallons per minute, Scheidler said. From the tank to the planes, the fuel is pumped at 40 gpm.

Scheidler said airport officials and employees have received training on how to operate and monitor the system.

“Everything’s a go,” he said.

Dooley also told the Daily News on Tuesday afternoon that the airport board has finalized an agreement to settle a contractual dispute with the family of the late Don Horan. Horan had signed a contract with the airport to lease a hangar for $500 per month for 120 months, or about $60,000, but Horan died in a plane crash in Greensburg, less than two months after he signed the lease.

Dooley said he got an email from the board attorney on Tuesday, saying that the settlement agreement had been signed. The family has agreed to pay half of the original contracted amount and to release the airport board and city from any wrongful death claim.

- Source: 

NTSB Identification: CEN13FA085 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, December 02, 2012 in Greensburg, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/24/2014
Aircraft: PIPER PA 46-350P, registration: N92315
Injuries: 4 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 instrument-rated private pilot was executing a nonprecision instrument approach procedure at night in deteriorating weather conditions. According to GPS track data, the pilot executed the approach as published but descended below the missed approach point’s minimum altitude before executing a climbing right turn. This turn was not consistent with the published missed approach procedure. The airplane then began a series of left and right ascending and descending turns to various altitudes. The last few seconds of recorded data indicated that the airplane entered a descending left turn. Two witnesses heard the airplane fly overhead at a low altitude and described the weather as foggy. Reported weather at a nearby airport about 26 minutes before the accident was visibility less than 2 miles in mist and an overcast ceiling of 300 feet. A friend of the pilot flew the same route in a similarly equipped airplane and arrived about 30 minutes before the accident airplane. He said he performed the same approach to the missed approach point but never broke out of the clouds, so he executed a missed approach and diverted to an alternate airport. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.

Federal Aviation Administration Flight Training Handbook Advisory Circular 61-21A cautions that pilots are particularly vulnerable to spatial disorientation during periods of low visibility due to conflicts between what they see and what their supporting senses, such as the inner ear and muscle sense, communicate. The accident airplane’s maneuvering flightpath, as recorded by the GPS track data, in night instrument meteorological conditions is consistent with the pilot’s loss of airplane control due to spatial disorientation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain airplane control while maneuvering in night instrument meteorological conditions due to spatial disorientation.

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