Thursday, January 16, 2014

American Champion 8KCAB Decathlon, N469J, American Champion Aircraft Corporation: Accident occurred January 15, 2014 in Holland, New Jersey

NTSB Identification: ERA14FA093
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, January 15, 2014 in Holland, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/27/2015
Aircraft: AMERICAN CHAMPION AIRCRAFT 8KCAB, registration: N469J
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 pilot had recently purchased the newly-manufactured airplane from the factory and was returning to his home airport when the accident occurred. The weather conditions initially forecast in the vicinity of the destination airport before the pilot's departure generally were consistent with visual meteorological conditions; however, by the time the pilot was within 50 miles of the destination airport, the forecast and actual weather conditions had deteriorated to instrument meteorological conditions (IMC). Shortly before the accident, a witness observed the airplane as it flew low above the ground in visibilities of about 150 yards in dense fog. The airplane subsequently impacted the tops of trees located near the peak of rising terrain before impacting the ground. The orientation and length of the wreckage path were consistent with a controlled flight into terrain impact sequence. Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of any preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures.

The accident airplane was not equipped for flight IMC, nor did the pilot hold an instrument rating. A handheld tablet computer along with a device capable of receiving in-flight weather updates was recovered from the wreckage. It could not be determined if the pilot had used the device to observe the changing weather conditions during the accident flight; however, the pilot also could have used outside visual references and could have tuned the onboard communications radio to weather reporting stations located along the route of flight and noted that weather conditions ahead had deteriorated to IMC. Upon encountering IMC, the pilot could have diverted the flight to allow weather conditions to improve rather than continuing to the planned destination.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's continued visual flight rules flight into instrument meteorological conditions, resulting in controlled flight into trees and terrain.


HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On January 15, 2014, at 1607 eastern standard time, an American Champion Aircraft 8KCAB, N469J, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees and terrain. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. Instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The personal flight, which departed New Castle Municipal Airport (UCP), New Castle, Pennsylvania, and was destined for Alexandria Airport (N85), Pittstown, New Jersey, was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to representatives of the airframe manufacturer, the pilot had recently purchased the airplane, and had departed from their factory in Rochester, Wisconsin, on the morning of the accident to return to his home airport of N85. A handheld GPS device was recovered from the wreckage and its contents downloaded. Review of the data showed that the pilot departed from Fox River Airport (96C), Fox River, Wisconsin about 1004, and arrived at De Kalb County Airport (GWB), Auburn, Indiana about 1129. A fuel receipt recovered from the wreckage noted that the pilot serviced the airplane with 21 gallons of 100LL aviation fuel at GWB at 1143. 

The pilot subsequently departed GWB about 1203 and landed at UCP about 1335. The pilot then departed UCP about 1352 on the accident flight. The airplane's final GPS-recorded position was logged at 1607:24, in the vicinity of the accident site. 

About that time, a witness reported that while working on a tractor at her dairy farm, she was startled by the sound of a low-flying airplane. She stated that despite the noise of the operating tractor, she heard the airplane overfly her position directly, heading to the east. The airplane sounded "very loud," and the engine sound was smooth and continuous. She looked up and saw the silhouette of an airplane, but due to the dense fog in the area, she could not discern its type or configuration. She believed that the airplane was flying at an altitude above the ground that was less than the height of the nearby high voltage transmission towers, which she estimated to be about 150 feet tall. The elevation at the point where the witness observed the airplane was 232 feet.

After losing sight of the airplane, she dismounted her tractor and attempted look for the it, but again could not see farther than about 125 yards due to the fog. Several seconds later she smelled a unique odor, that she later realized was likely aviation fuel, after having heard reports that an airplane was missing in the area. She subsequently contacted local authorities and advised them that she believed that the airplane may have crashed somewhere near her farm.

The accident site was subsequently located about 2,800 feet east of where the witness last observed the airplane. 

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The accident airplane was certificated in both the normal and acrobatic categories, and manufactured in December 2013. It was equipped with basic flight instrumentation including an altimeter, vertical speed indicator, airspeed indicator, and turn coordinator. It was not equipped for instrument flight, and no attitude or heading indicators were installed. The airplane was equipped with a single communications radio as well as a transponder, but no navigation radios were installed. A handheld GPS and a tablet computer running aviation flight planning/navigation software were recovered from the accident site. A handheld automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast receiver was also recovered, which among other features, was capable of providing textual and graphic weather products in-flight.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with numerous ratings, including airplane single engine land. He did not hold an instrument rating. The pilot's personal flight logs were not recovered. The pilot's most recent FAA third-class medical certificate was issued on June 6, 2012, and on that date he reported 4,000 total hours of flight experience.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

The National Weather Service (NWS) Surface Analysis Chart for 1600 depicted a cold front extending from eastern New York and Pennsylvania, and into western New Jersey, Maryland, and southward into Virginia. The accident site was located in the immediate vicinity of the cold front. Numerous station models depicted light winds, overcast clouds, with visibility restricted in fog, temperatures around 5 degrees Celsus (C), with temperature-dew point spreads several degrees C or less. The general route of flight from Indiana to New Jersey was characterized by overcast clouds with scattered snow showers.

The NWS Weather Depiction Chart for 1400 showed a large area of marginal VFR conditions over Illinois, Indiana, into Ohio and then into Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia, with IFR conditions over eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey in the vicinity of the accident site due to fog.

The national radar mosaic for 1615 depicted a small band of very light intensity echoes along the Appalachian mountains in the vicinity of the accident site associated with stratiform clouds and potential drizzle, and an area of light reflectivity further west stretching from New York southwestward into West Virginia.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite 13, infrared and visible images at 1615 depicted an area of low to mid-level stratiform clouds and fog over eastern Pennsylvania and northwestern New Jersey, which extended over the accident site. The radiative cloud top temperature over the accident site was 265 degrees Kelvin or -8.16 degrees C, which corresponded to cloud tops near 10,000 feet.

The area forecast encompassing the accident site was updated at 1345, and for the area of New Jersey and Southeastern Pennsylvania, forecast broken clouds at 5,000 feet with cloud tops at 7,000 feet. Through 1600, occasional periods of visibilities between 3 and 5 statute miles in mist were forecast, and at 1600, a broken ceiling at 6,000 feet. The outlook advised of visual meteorological conditions. The area forecast was amended by an AIRMET issued at 1436, and for the area encompassing the accident site, included ceilings below 1,000 feet, visibilities below 3 statute miles in mist and fog, with those conditions forecast to end by 1600. An updated AIRMET was issued at 1545 which advised of ceilings below 1,000 feet, visibilities below 3 statute miles in precipitation and mist, continuing beyond 2200.

Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE), Allentown, PA, was located approximately 15 miles west of the accident site at an elevation of 394 feet. The weather conditions reported at 1551 included winds from 320 degrees true at 4 knots, 1/4 statute mile visibility in fog, vertical visibility 300 feet, temperature and dew point of 3 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 29.91 inches of mercury. At 1724, the reported weather conditions at ABE improved to a visibility of 2 statute miles in mist, and a broken ceiling at 1,600 feet. 

ABE was located 20 nautical miles west of the destination airport, and issued several updated terminal aerodrome forecasts (TAF) throughout the accident day, which forecast local weather conditions around the time of the accident. The TAF issued at 0900 anticipated that conditions between 1300 and 1900 would include winds from 230 degrees true at 6 knots, greater than 6 statute miles visibility, and broken clouds at 3,500 feet. An amended TAF issued at 1233 anticipated that those same conditions would predominate between 1500 and 1900.

The 1255 TAF included current conditions of variable winds at 2 knots, 1/4 statute mile visibility in fog, a vertical visibility of 200 feet, and that temporarily between 1500 and 1700, the conditions would improve to a visibility of 2 statute miles in mist and an overcast ceiling of 200 feet. Current and forecast conditions did not improve during subsequent hourly issuances of the forecast. The 1456 TAF included current conditions of winds from 340 degrees at 4 knots, 1/4 statute mile visibility in fog, and a vertical visibility of 200 feet. Temporarily between 1500 and 1700, the forecast conditions included 1 statute mile visibility in mist, and an overcast ceiling at 200 feet. Beyond 1700, the forecast called for winds from 270 degrees at 4 knots, greater than 6 statute miles visibility, and an overcast ceiling at 3,500 feet.

Quakertown Airport (UKT), Quakertown, Pennsylvania, was located 20 nautical miles southwest of the destination airport at an elevation of 525 feet, and the airplane passed about 2 nautical miles north of the airport at 1602. The weather conditions reported at 1555 included calm winds, 3/4 statute mile visibility, an overcast ceiling at 100 feet, temperature and dew point of 4 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 29.90 inches of mercury.

AIRPORT INFORMATION

N85 was located at an elevation of 480 feet, and was served by a single, non-precision instrument approach procedure. The airport was comprised of two crossing runways oriented in a 08/26 and 13/31 configuration. The closest airports with official weather reporting capabilities were located between 16 and 20 nautical miles away. 

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The initial impact point (IIP) was identified as an area of tree strikes near the crest of a hill, at an elevation of 417 feet. The tree strikes were about 50 feet above ground level. A wreckage path extended beyond the initial tree strikes on a magnetic heading of 100 degrees for about 460 feet. Broken tree branches, broken windscreen and side window pieces, pieces of the airplane's fabric covering, and inspection covers were distributed along the wreckage path. A ground scar was located about 300 feet beyond the IIP, and was about 5 feet long and 2 feet wide. 

The main portion of the wreckage came to rest beyond an embankment, on a ledge. Both of the wings were largely separated from the fuselage, but remained attached by the aileron control cable and one wing strut on the right side. The forward portion of the fuselage and firewall were deformed and displaced aft. The portion of the fuselage aft of the instrument panel remained largely intact. The empennage and tail control surfaces remained relatively intact with the exception of the left horizontal stabilizer and elevator, which were bent downward at a near 90-degree angle. 

Control continuity was traced from both cockpit control sticks to the elevator and aileron control horns, and from the rudder pedals to the rudder control horn. The altimeter was found set to 29.70 inches of mercury.

The pilot was discovered by first responders seated in the front seat. Examination of the installed five-point restraint system showed two cuts made by first responders to the lap belt and groin strap, with the system otherwise intact. The lap belt and groin strap latch were found fastened together; however the shoulder harnesses were not fastened and found hanging from their mount point. 

The engine remained attached to its mounts and displayed significant impact-related damage to the number one cylinder and exhaust system, while the number two and four cylinders displayed relatively less impact damage. Both of the wooden propeller blades were broken off at the propeller hub. The engine crankshaft was rotated by hand via the propeller hub, and thumb compression and suction were obtained on cylinders number one and three. Movement was observed at all rocker arms except the number four cylinder intake arm, which was impact-damaged. Crankshaft and camshaft continuity was confirmed from the propeller flange to the accessory gears.

The spark plugs were removed and appeared unremarkable. Both magnetos were secure on their mounts. They were subsequently removed and rotated by an electric drill motor, which produced spark at all terminal leads. The engine-driven fuel pump was removed from its mount and when actuated by hand, it produced suction and compression. The fuel flow divider was removed and dismantled, with no defects were observed. The oil suction screen was removed and was found absent of debris.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the pilot by Forensic Pathology Services, LLC at the Hunterdon County Medical Examiner's Office, Flemington, New Jersey. The stated cause of death was, "multiple blunt force trauma."

The FAA's Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicological testing on the pilot. No carbon monoxide, ethanol, or drugs were detected in the samples submitted.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Handheld GPS Data

A Garmin GPSMAP 496 handheld GPS device was recovered from the wreckage and found to be in good condition. The portable GPS receiver was capable of storing date, route-of-flight, and flight-time information for up to 50 flights. A detailed tracklog – including latitude, longitude, date, time, and groundspeed information – was stored within the unit whenever the receiver had a lock on the GPS navigation signal. All recorded data was stored in non-volatile memory. The unit contained hardware and software permitting the download of recorded waypoint, route, and tracklog information to a PC via a built-in serial port. Power was applied to the unit using NTSB Vehicle Recorder Laboratory equipment, and device startup was consistent with normal operation. GPS data was downloaded using normal methods and Garmin's Mapsource software. The data extracted included 32 sessions from August 24, 2013 through January 15, 2014.

A three-dimensional plot of the accident flight was prepared overlaying the GPS data onto an orthographically projected terrain map. Review of the plot showed that the airplane generally maintained a GPS altitude of between 2,000 and 3,000 feet for the enroute portion of the flight. About 1604, the airplane began descending from its previously established altitude of 3,000 feet, and for a period of 32 seconds between 1604:46 and 1605:18, descended at an average rate of about 1,600 feet per minute. 

By 1605:58, the airplane had descended to a GPS altitude of about 1,100 feet, which calculated to be about 600 feet above the terrain in that area. At the point where the airplane overflew the witness's farm, it was about 375 feet above the terrain, and when the airplane's final GPS position was recorded at 1607:24, it was about 270 feet above the terrain. The airplane's final recorded track was oriented roughly toward the destination airport, which was located about 5.6 nautical miles east of the accident site. 

FAA Advisory Circular 61-134

In April 2003, the FAA published Advisory Circular 61-134, General Aviation Controlled Flight into Terrain Awareness. The circular stated in part:

"Operating in marginal VFR [visual flight rules]/IMC conditions is more commonly known as scud running. According to National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and FAA data, one of the leading causes of GA accidents is continued VFR flight into IMC. As defined in 14 CFR part 91, ceiling, cloud, or visibility conditions less than that specified for VFR or Special VFR is IMC and IFR [instrument flight rules] applies. However, some pilots, including some with instrument ratings, continue to fly VFR in conditions less than that specified for VFR. The result is often a CFIT [controlled flight into terrain] accident when the pilot tries to continue flying or maneuvering beneath a lowering ceiling and hits an obstacle or terrain or impacts water. The accident may or may not be a result of a loss of control before the aircraft impacts the obstacle or surface. The importance of complete weather information, understanding the significance of the weather information, and being able to correlate the pilot's skills and training, aircraft capabilities, and operating environment with an accurate forecast cannot be emphasized enough."

The circular concludes with several recommendations to avoid CFIT-type accidents which in part included:
"(1) Noninstrument rated VFR pilots should not attempt to fly in IMC.
(2) Know and fly above minimum published safe altitudes. VFR: Fly a minimum of 1,000 feet above the highest terrain in your immediate operating area in nonmountainous areas. Fly a minimum of 2,000 feet in mountainous areas."

http://registry.faa.gov/N469J

NTSB Identification: ERA14FA093
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, January 15, 2014 in Holland, NJ
Aircraft: AMERICAN CHAMPION AIRCRAFT 8KCAB, registration: N469J
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 January 15, 2014, about 1615 eastern standard time, an American Champion Aircraft 8KCAB, N469J, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees and terrain near Holland, New Jersey. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The personal flight, which departed De Kalb County Airport (GWB), Auburn, Indiana, and was destined for Alexandria Airport (N85), Pittstown, New Jersey, was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to representatives of the airframe manufacturer, the pilot had recently purchased the airplane, and had departed from their factory in Rochester, Wisconsin, on the morning of the accident to return to his home airport of N85. A fuel receipt recovered from the wreckage noted that the pilot serviced the airplane with 21 gallons of 100LL aviation fuel at GWB at 1143.

A witness reported that while working on a tractor at her dairy farm, she was startled by the sound of a low-flying airplane. She stated that despite the noise of the operating tractor, she heard the airplane overfly her position directly, heading to the east. The airplane sounded "very loud," and the engine sound was smooth and continuous. She looked up and saw the silhouette of an airplane, but due to the dense fog in the area, she could not discern its type or configuration. She believed that the airplane was flying at an altitude above the ground that was less than the nearby high voltage transmission towers, which were estimated to be about 150 feet tall. The elevation at the point where the witness observed the accident airplane was 232 feet mean sea level (msl).

After losing sight of the airplane, she dismounted her tractor and attempted look for the airplane, but again could not see farther than about 125 yards due to the fog. Several seconds later she smelled a unique odor, that she later realized was likely aviation fuel, after having heard reports that an airplane was missing in the area. She subsequently contacted local authorities and advised them that she believed that the airplane may have crashed somewhere near her farm.

The accident site was subsequently located about 2,800 feet east of where the witness last observed the airplane.

The initial impact point (IIP) was identified as an area of tree strikes near the crest of a hill, at an elevation of 417 feet msl. The tree strikes were about 50 feet above ground level. A wreckage path extended beyond the initial tree strikes on a magnetic heading of 100 degrees for about 460 feet.

An examination of the airframe and engine were scheduled for a later date.


Joseph “Joe” Borin


Joseph “Joe” Borin, of Whitehouse Station, NJ, died on Wednesday, January 15, 2014, in a tragic airplane accident. He was 71 years old. Joe was born on March 14, 1942, and raised in Middlesex Borough, NJ. He graduated from Bound Brook High School in 1960. 

Joe was a loving and generous Dad and Pop Pop, while still working and enjoying life to the fullest every day. He was the successful business owner of Superior Custom Kitchens in Warren, NJ for over fifty years with his long-time business partner and friend, Jack Barna. He enabled and encouraged his family and friends to adventure with him around the globe, scuba diving, snorkeling, exploring by motorcycle, and enjoying nature. He was a great friend to so many and rallied around his Tuesday night dinner crew, “The Romeos.” He volunteered his time with students at Mane Stream, participated in many air shows, and always jumped at the chance to take someone new up to feel the magic of flying.

Joe’s thirty-year flying history included owning and flying hang-gliders, gyrocopters, a rebuilt “Mash” helicopter, a Glassair, Super Decathlon, BT-13, Stearman PT-17, Breezy, hot air balloons, and countless homebuilt ultralights and weedhoppers. He has been described by his friends and family as a pilot’s pilot, a true aviator, a man who represents the spirit and essence of flying, and a wondrous adventurer. He volunteered his time introducing youth to the love of flying at Alexandria airport camps and flew in many ceremonies celebrating veterans using his many World War II airplanes, complete with smoke and acrobatics. His “second home” was Alexandria Field where he owned and flew several airplanes with an incredible community of dedicated aviators.

He is predeceased by his loving father and mother, Eugene and Sabina Borin. He is survived by his true companion and best friend, Donna Greves of Whitehouse Station; his three daughters, Kimberly Borin of Lebanon, Heidi Schumann and her husband Christopher of Lebanon, and Gabrielle Borin and her husband Joe Shellhammer of Fort Collins, CO; his former wife, Barbara Borin; his beloved cousin, Anne Pellegrin of Lancaster, PA; his dear sister, Mary Palazzi of Middlesex; his adored grandchildren, Hunter James and Annie Rose Schumann, and Alexandria Rose Shellhammer; along with his niece Linda and nephews David and Paul Palazzi.

Calling hours will be held on Sunday, January 19, 2014, from 12:00-4:00PM at the Kearns Funeral Home, 103 Old Hwy 28, Whitehouse, NJ 08888. Reception to follow.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mane Stream, Inc, PO Box 305, 83 Old Turnpike Rd, Oldwick, NJ 08858; or to sponsor a Young Aviator at Alexandria Field Summer Camp, please email Linda at upupaway@embarqmail.com.


Source:   http://www.thehcnews.com


When Jack Barna wanted to start a custom kitchen business in 1961, the first person he called was his high school classmate, Joe Borin.

The two men grew up together in Middlesex and graduated from Bound Brook High School. They started Superior Custom Kitchens in Warren.

On Wednesday night, Borin, 71, of the Whitehouse Station section of Readington, died when the single-engine Citabria plane he was flying crashed in a remote part of Hunterdon County in Holland Township off Route 627. Authorities said he was the only person on the plane.

Barna said Borin recently purchased the plane and was flying it back from Wisconsin. Authorities couldn’t confirm or deny that.

“He loved flying,” Barna said. “That was his passion. He was a very good pilot.”

Hunterdon County Prosecutor Anthony P. Kearns III said it took search teams almost five hours to find the plane because of weather conditions and the remote location of the crash site. The crash occurred at about 5 p.m.

“We believe Mr. Borin was attempting to reach Alexandria Field in dense fog and rain,” Kearns said. “The crash investigation is being conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.”

According to Kearns, witnesses called Hunterdon County Communications reporting that they heard what sounded like a small plane crash in a remote location off Route 627.

Borin was remembered at Alexandria Field as a pilot who enjoyed mentoring young people.

“He (Borin) took a great deal of pride working with young kids when we had camps here,” said the airport’s co-woner, Linda Castner. “He has a long history of aviation. There will be a big hole in aviation because he’s not here.”

Castner said Borin had been flying for more than 30 years. When the weather was suitable, Borin would fly twice a day, she said.

“He was a beloved advocate of general aviation,” Castner said.

Borin enjoyed showing off his vintage Stearman plane to young people during Solberg-Hunterdon Airport’s open house in Readington and often led flyovers with other pilots in World War II planes during events in Central Jersey honoring veterans.

“He started with hang gliders and worked his way into airplanes,” Barna said. “He used to do stunt flying.

“He was a hard and diligent worker. He was a good partner.”

Anyone with information about the crash should contact the Hunterdon County Prosecutor’s Office at 908-788-1129.


http://www.dailyrecord.com



Joe Borin, standing next to a plane during one of Alexandria Field's summer camps, was a mentor to young people interested in aviation. He died Wednesday night when his plane crashed in a rural part of Hunterdon County.
 / Photo courtesy Alexandria Field 


Joe Borin, seen here with his granddaughter Annie Rose, was an avid pilot. The Readington Township resident died Wednesday night when his small plane crashed in Holland Township in Hunterdon County 
Courtesy Superior Custom Kitchens



Updated Friday, January 17, 2014 at 10:35 AM  

HOLLAND TWP. — Township police this morning closed a section of Route 627 (Riegelsville-Milford Road), apparently related to the small plane crash Wednesday evening which claimed the life of the pilot, a Readington Township man.

A piece of the road in the area called “The Narrows” between Spring Garden and Crab Apple roads was closed around 8:30 “until further notice,” according to an alert issued by HART Commuter Information Services. A spokesman for the county Road Department said the police had requested barricades to close the road, and no other information was available from the county.

The closing may be for the planned removal of the plane, which will be done by a company hired by an insurance company, according to an investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board. The plane was a new, American Champion Super Decathlon, which purchaser Joseph Borin was flying back from Wisconsin.

The federal probe was to continue today, so personnel could gather evidence that is destroyed when the plane is removed, including how it came to rest. The investigators also want to hear from anybody who heard or saw anything that could help them determined why the plane crashed.


The Hunterdon Prosecutor held a press conference at the municipal building in Holland Township on Jan. 16, following a pilot that died in a plane crash.
(Photos by Renee Kiriluk-Hill) 




Dennis Diaz, air safety inspector for the National Transportation Safety Board, discusses Wednesday’s plane crash in Holland Township in the township municipal building. 



HOLLAND TWP. — A National Transportation Safety Board investigator said this afternoon that a preliminary report into yesterday's plane crash, in which Readington Township resident Joseph Borin died, should be issued within two weeks but won't say why the accident happened. 

Air safety investigator Dennis Diaz said that the initial report will say "when and where" the crash happened, but the "why and how" could take a year.

He said it appears that Borin's plane crashed at about 4 p.m. on Jan. 15, and is asking any "eye or ear" witnesses to reach out to the NTSB.

Today and tomorrow, Diaz said, his agency is gathering "perishable evidence," that is destroyed when the plane is removed, including how it "came to rest" and the environmental conditions.
 
A recovery company "hired by the insurance company" will remove the wreckage, he said. The plane did not catch fire and did not break up when it crashed, Diaz said.

He praised searchers who found the plane at about 10 p.m. yesterday, calling the terrain around the crash site "difficult ... steep, muddy, wet."

The wreckage is down an embankment, according to Diaz, which "can make re covery more difficult."

The plane will be moved to a facility in Delaware for the follow-up investigation, which will involve records related to the weather, airplane and Borin, 71, including the pilot's medical records filed with the FAA.

According to Diaz, a portable GPS and personal tablet have been recovered from the downed plane.

Borin was co-owner of Superior Custom Kitchens in Warren and a pilot for about 30 years. His destination yesterday was Alexandria Field. Airport co-owner Linda Castner said that he was returning from Wisconsin with his new airplane.

Story and pictures show the press conference and surrounding area in Holland Township:  http://www.nj.com

 (Photos by Renee Kiriluk-Hill) 



 The Hunterdon Prosecutor held a press conference at the municipal building in Holland Township on Jan. 16, following a pilot that died in a plane crash.

Upper Cumberland Regional Airport (KSRB), Sparta, Tennessee: Frigid weather delays hangar construction


Airport board chairman Will Roberson, right, discusses hangar construction delays at the Upper Cumberland Regional Airport as airport engineer Richard Rinks, left, and pilot Mark Dymond look on during Tuesday’s board meeting. 
Amy Davis | Herald-Citizen


UPPER CUMBERLAND — Bitter cold days — complete with plenty of snow and ice — have slowed hangar construction at the Upper Cumberland Regional Airport.

It is January, after all.

But airport engineer Richard Rinks said the three-hangar project is moving along “as well as could be expected” under the frigid circumstances.

“Obviously, they are fighting the weather,” Rinks said of the construction team at UCRA’s monthly board meeting Tuesday.

“They’ve got all three footings and two slabs poured, which is a minor miracle... They’ve got the wire mesh and everything set to pour the last floor slab, but we don’t want to pour it and then let it turn cold, which is what (the weather) is fixing to do.”

Rinks also reported that contracts have been executed on a couple of grant amendments — one approving the board’s request to extend the apron portion of the new hangar project; the other to repair runway cracks.

“Even though we’re building three hangars, we’re going all the way to the end with that apron,” Rinks said.

In past meetings, it was discussed that by paving beyond what was required for the current project, the airport would be in an ideal position for adding more hangars in the future.

“So that’s good,” Rinks said of the amendment. “We can now do that by change order.”

The other amendment allows for the repair of cracks in the asphalt along the runway.

“We’ll start that and bid it when the weather breaks,” Rinks said.

Board member Mike Atwood asked, “How are you going to fix it?”

Rinks then explained that four to five inches of asphalt would need to be cut away from the edge of the runway. Afterward, topsoil would be added, and it would be seeded for grass.

On another note, airport manager Jim Kmet reported that UCRA sold 5,823 gallons of fuel in December.

“It’s a little slow when you look at the other 11 months, but it’s better than last December, and this is the first year in over three years we haven’t run negative gallons sold,” he said.

Board member Herd Sullivan said, “So, it’s usually slow in December anyway, right?”

Kmet agreed and added, “But we’ve stopped a negative trend in fuel sales. Total gallons over the years were continuing to drop up until 2013.”

In other business, Kmet and board chairman Will Roberson updated the board on a lease agreement between UCRA and William Dunn of Cookeville, who proposed building his own 75x80-foot hangar at UCRA.

“This lease is unique and exciting for us because it’s rare that somebody comes along and wants to build a multi-hundred-thousand-dollar facility on your property, which will eventually become the airport’s facility...” Roberson said.

“He’s offering to do something not only in his interest but also in the airport’s interest.”

Board members discussed some wordage that may need to be changed but ultimately decided to pass the lease on to the board’s attorney for review “with a view toward finalizing it.”

“We certainly want to do everything we can to encourage (Dunn) to proceed with his plans,” Roberson said.

“It sounds pretty exciting what he’s about to do. It’s going to be a really neat facility and a really great addition to the airport.”

Board members Paul Bailey, Randy Wallace and Kim Blaylock were absent from the meeting.

Read more: Herald Citizen - Frigid weather delays UCRA hangar construction

Ecuador drug bust nets plane, drugs, 9 suspects

QUITO, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- Ecuador's Anti-Narcotics Police on Thursday seized a plane, drugs, and arrested nine people suspected of drug trafficking, as part of a wide-reaching operation, Ecuadorian Interior Minister Jose Serrano said.

The aircraft was allegedly being used to fly drugs into Central America, a common distribution point for cocaine and other illicit substances destined for the U.S. and European markets, authorities believe.

Serrano said via Twitter that two of the detained were Mexican pilots charged with flying the small plane, which was found in Ayangue, in the Ecuadorian coastal province of Santa Elena.

The pilots were arrested at a different location, after intelligence led authorities to a house in Guayaquil, Ecuador's largest city and capital of Guayas province, where the two were hiding out.

Ecuador's Gama TV reported that officials also found passports, cash and a GPS watch at the residence.

The operation also led to the seizure of 500 packets of cocaine in Puerto Inca, in Guayas province, which were set to be loaded onto the plane, said Serrano.

According to local press reports, the arrests were made at several locations, including Guayas, Santa Elena and Santo Domingo de los Tsachilas.

The pilots told police that mechanical failures forced a hard landing in Ayangue. They abandoned the aircraft afterward.



Source:   http://www.shanghaidaily.com

Hawarden airport crash: Airbus workers disciplined for posting photographs online - Cessna 310Q, G-BXUY

Two Airbus workers who took photos of a horror plane crash and posted them online have been disciplined, the company confirmed.

Pictures from a plane crash at Hawarden Airport in November, which were taken on the Airbus site in Broughton, surfaced on social media websites shortly after the crash.

The pilot of the plane, Gary Vickers, 58, and his partner Kaye Clarke, 42, both of Chester, were on their way back to the city from Paris when the plane crashed. Both were killed.

Airbus, who run Hawarden Airport next to their wingmaking site in Broughton, has a policy that prohibits the taking and distribution of photographs on its sites.

Yesterday, a company spokesman confirmed that two unnamed members of staff were the subjects of disciplinary action after images they had taken of the crash appeared online.

The spokesman said: “Airbus can confirm that an investigation was launched after photographs were taken on the Broughton site following the tragic accident in November and shared on social media channels.

“In common with many manufacturing facilities, we do not allow photography on site except by authorized people and only under certain circumstances.

“As a result of this investigation, we can confirm that two people working on the Broughton site were found to be in breach of company procedures and were subject to the associated disciplinary action.

“For reasons of confidentiality we are not able to provide further details on the nature of this disciplinary action.”

The spokesman would not confirm whether the staff members were currently working at the site.

Mr Vickers and Ms Clarke had been travelling back from a shopping trip to Paris when their twin engine light aircraft came down at Hawarden Airport just after 1pm.

Mr Vickers was pronounced dead at the scene and Ms Clarke was taken to the Countess of Chester Hospital, where she later died.

Mr Vickers, who co-owned the Mill Hotel in Chester with his father Gordon, was described as an exceptional pilot who had years of flying experience.

Post-mortem examinations revealed Mr Vickers died from head and chest injuries while Miss Clarke died from shock and haemorrhaging.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) is continuing to investigate the crash.

The findings of their investigation are not expected until June.


Sources:   


http://www.chesterfirst.co.uk

http://www.dailypost.co.uk

Venezuelan military downs suspected smuggling plane

Venezuela's armed forces reported Tuesday that it intercepted a Cessna 210 aircraft arriving from Central America after its crew ignored orders to land. 

 The incident occurred over the coast of the western Venezuelan state of Zulia that borders on Colombia, the head of the Strategic Operational Command, Gen. Vladimir Padrino Lopez said on Twitter.

He posted a photo of the plane after it had been brought down, with half its fuselage sunk in Lake Maracaibo and surrounded by security forces.

No information has yet been released about the fate of the Cessna's crew or about it cargo.

The Venezuelan congress passed in May 2012 a measure that allows "the interception, persuasion and putting out of action" of aircraft or other objects that infringe air traffic regulations.

President Nicolas Maduro said last weekend that since the law went into effect, 30 aircraft suspected of ties to drug trafficking have been shot down.

One of the most recent incidents took place on Christmas Day, when the armed forces "immobilized" a light plane that entered Venezuelan air space in the state of Apure on the border with Colombia.

Venezuela is not a drug-producing nation, but neighboring Colombia is one of the world's leading sources of cocaine. 



Source:   http://latino.foxnews.com