Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bellanca 8GCBC Scout, Heads Up Advertising, N87020: Accident occurred August 02, 2011 in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey

FRANKLINVILLE, N.J. -   A FOX 29 investigation: a young New Jersey pilot survives a devastating crash only to learn that his employer does not hold the important insurance policy that is vital in getting him back on his feet.

Jeff Cole and FOX 29 Investigates have the story tonight of Jason Flood and his fight for what he believes he's owed.

A warning, some of the images in this report are hard to look at.

"...This is what it's made to do. Doing the aerobatics--flips, rolls, spins..." said Flood.

Jason Flood is happy when he's around his aerobatic plane. He feels pure joy when he's strapped in its seat, control in hand---defying gravity.

"Free. I'm at home. It's a place of enjoyment. It's freedom. It's what I love..." said Flood.

Flood is a 23-year-old pilot who flies out of a small airfield near his Franklinville, New Jersey home. However, every time he soars, he remembers the day that he came tumbling to earth.

"...August 2nd. was a very devastating, life changing event for me..." he said. "I can't talk. I am in a strange room trying to figure out where I am. I can't get up to go to the bathroom. My life changed that day."

August 2nd., 2011, He's is flying low trying to hook-on an advertising banner to pull above beach goers along the Jersey Shore. Suddenly, the engine quits and Flood spirals down.

Federal Investigators found that the 20-year-old pilot made an error.

Flood says he had just moments to lift the nose of the aircraft before it slapped the earth.

"On the scene you could hear in the police recordings they said this doesn't look good," Flood said.

Jason Flood was knocked-out. Rescue workers found him bent-over and bloodied in the cockpit. Pictures show his crumpled body in the yellow tee-shirt. Flood had suffered massive injuries including broken bones, organ damage and internal bleeding.

Flood was eventually rushed to Camden's Cooper Hospital where, after 3 weeks in a coma and multiple surgeries, he emerged with rods and pins holding his broken body together.

"...How did you survive?" asked FOX 29's Jeff Cole.

"By the grace of God..." he replied.

Jason Flood's rehab was painful and long. Furthermore, he says it was made more difficult when he learned the family friend who'd hired him to fly banner planes failed to carry state-required insurance that would have gone a long way to help him get back on his feet."

That man is Herbert Degan of Woodbine, New Jersey. He can be seen behind the wheel of the Lexis recording FOX 29's Jeff Cole and his crew with his cell phone.

You can see Degan in happier times with Jason Flood in a photo posted on a web site which documents aerobatic air shows. They're also side by side in a video of a fund raiser held for Flood.

According to a State of New Jersey Workers Compensation Order, Degan's banner business Heads Up Advertising, LLC, which is under his and his wife's names, was uninsured. It did not carry state-mandated workers' compensation insurance.

While the Degan's did pay Flood his weekly wages of about 200 bucks for half a year in 2012, Flood's won a 190,000 dollar workers' compensation judgment against Heads Up Advertising and the Degan's, but he has not collected.

And there's something else you should know about Herbert Degan. He's an air traffic controller at the Atlantic City Airport. He's directed aircraft to depart and land safely for 22 years. In fact, he's listed as the "safety rep." at the Atlantic City air traffic control Tower for the National Air Traffic Controllers Union.

Jeff Cole tried to talk to Herbert Degan, but as he approached his SUV, he noticed his young son in the back seat, so he asked Degan to take his card so they could talk later.

Degan would not talk. His bankruptcy attorney, in an e-mailed statement to FOX 29, accused Jason Flood and his parents of spreading "venomous lies" about the Degan's.

He wrote that the Degan's would like "nothing more than to respond" but are unable to because the "Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case is still pending."

Herbert Degan and his wife filed the Chapter 7 bankruptcy in November of 2013 claiming that they owe between One-million and 10-million dollars.

Listed as creditors: Jason Flood for his 190,000 dollar workers' comp. judgment and the State of New Jersey for almost 1.2-milion dollars, most of it for Flood's medical bills. Those bills have now been cut to $400,000 and paid by a special state fund.

In a recording of the December bankruptcy hearing, Herbert Degan admits his banner business had no workers' compensation insurance at the time of Flood's devastating crash, but claimed it was an accountant's fault.

"He failed to obtain workers compensation insurance for us without us knowing," Degan said.

In the meantime, Jason Flood is back fighting gravity and battling for what he believes he's owed.

"I'm left in the dust, left at the bottom, trampled on again--even after the plane crash," said Flood.

FOX 29 called New Jersey accountant Michael Shumski who's listed on the Degans' bankruptcy filing. He said he did work for Degan's Heads Up Advertising but does not recall Degan asking him to arrange workers' comp insurance. He says he forwards such requests to insurance brokers. The Degan's Attorney calls the crash a "tragic event" which has forever altered the lives of the Floods and the Degans.

Degan's attorney says they will also not respond at this time due to an "open criminal charge" against Jason Flood's father. Flood's father was charged with harassment after he accused the Degan's of lying on their bankruptcy filing after that December hearing. Flood says he'll fight the charge.

Story, video, photo gallery:  http://www.myfoxphilly.com


Bellanca 8GCBC Scout, Heads Up Advertising, N87020: Accident occurred August 02, 2011 in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey

NTSB Identification: ERA11LA437 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 02, 2011 in Egg Harbor Township, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/26/2012
Aircraft: BELLANCA 8GCBC, registration: N87020
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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

After the airplane’s fourth unsuccessful attempt to pick up a banner, a witness reported that the airplane was flying about 100 feet above ground level and the wings were "wobbling." The airplane then descended, and spun before it impacted the ground. The pilot stated that he did not have any recollection of the accident or the events prior to the accident. No preimpact anomalies were noted with the airframe or engine during a postaccident examination.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot’s failure to maintain adequate airspeed while maneuvering near the ground, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall.

On August 2, 2011, at 1500, eastern daylight time, a Bellanca 8GCBC, N87020, registered to an individual and operated by Heads Up Advertising, incurred substantial damage when it impacted terrain in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey. The pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a company flight plan was filed for the Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, banner towing flight. The flight originated from Woodbine Municipal Airport (OBI), Woodbine, New Jersey, about 1450.

The responding Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector stated that the pilot fueled the airplane prior to flying towards the banner pick up area. The pilot attempted 3 banner pickups prior to the accident. He maneuvered the airplane for the fourth attempt but failed to pick up the banner. The banner ground handler looked away and started to prepare the banner for another attempt, when moments later he heard a loud impact noise and observed the airplane had crashed into the ground about half mile away from the pickup area, on the crosswind for the banner tow pattern.

According to a witness, the airplane was observed flying approximately 100 feet above ground level. She noted that the wings were "wobbling" and the airplane was not climbing although it was in a nose up attitude. Next, she saw the airplane begin to "nosedive" and start spinning but was unable to see the airplane impact the ground.

The pilot stated that he did not have any recollection of the accident or the events prior to the accident.

The airplane was manufactured in 1974 and was equipped with a Lycoming O-360 series, 180-horsepower engine. The airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on February 3, 2011. At the time of the inspection, the reported aircraft time was 6698.0 total hours and the recorded tachometer was 2090.15 hours. The tachometer located in the wreckage 2236.91 hours.

The pilot, age 20, held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. His most recent Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) second-class medical certificate was issued in May 2011. He reported 600 total hours of flight experience, of which, 65 hours were in the accident airplane make and model.

A post accident examination of the wreckage by the FAA revealed that control continuity was verified to all flight control surfaces. Fuel samples were taken from each wing with no water or contaminants noted. Examination of the engine was performed and the top and bottom sparkplugs were removed and no issues were noted. The crankshaft was rotated by the propeller flange and compression was observed on all cylinders. In addition, spark was obtained from the spark plug leads during the rotation.


Published on Mar 17, 2013
WARNING: Graphic material. Viewer discretion is advised.

This is a video montage of photos that were acquired by Jason Flood, an aerobatic pilot based in Southern New Jersey. On August 2, 2011, Jason was flying a Bellanca 8GCBC Scout on a routine banner tow flight when, in the process of picking up a banner, the engine seized on the airplane and he and the aircraft crashed in Egg Harbor Township.

As a result of the accident, Jason sustained the following injuries: crushed left calcaneus heel, right ankle explosion, broken right tibia and right femur, an assortment of broken ribs, lumbar spine explosion, the total loss of his left kidney and spleen, and lastly a ruptured aorta. Jason underwent numerous surgeries to fix his heel, ankle, and tibia with rods and screws as well as the insertion of plates and screws in his body, including rods and screws in his back.

Amazingly, Jason made a full recovery. He took his first airplane flight a mere two months after the accident and flew the family's Piper Cub shortly afterwards. Ten months after the accident, in late June 2012, Jason competed in the Widlwood Acroblast competition in Cape May County, NJ, placing second in the intermediate category out of nine competitors. Not even two months after that Jason flew his first airshow performance since the accident - the airshow taking place at the New Garden Flying Field in Toughkenamon, PA.

Jason would like to thank the Egg Harbor Township Police Department, the Scullville Fire Company, the Cardiff Fire Department, and their respective EMS personnel for assisting in his rescue as well as the EMTs and pilots for the New Jersey State Police's SouthStar Medevac unit, along with staff at AtlantiCare Regional Medicare Center and Cooper University Medical Center in Camden for going above and beyond to ensure Jason got the best medical care possible. He would also like to thank his family and friends for always being by his side during that time, and of course throughout the entire recovery phase and beyond.

You can visit Jason's website at http://www.jasonfloodairshows.com 

Video of Jason's performances at the 2012 New Garden Airshow can be found at http://www.zingeraviation.com .

Jason Flood poses in front of his airplane in Hammonton, New Jersey 

Discover Aviation & Airshow Spectacular

9 a.m. Saturday

Sundance Airport

13000 N. Sara Road, Yukon



For Jason Flood, the Discover Aviation & Airshow Spectacular on Saturday is more than a chance to pilot his airplane for enthralled spectators; it’s his second chance at life. Flood is one of 15 pilots performing at noon at the Sundance Airport, 13000 N. Sara Road, in Yukon.

The event will include skydiving, 15-minute helicopter rides, a flight simulator, a bounce house for kids, food vendors, booths and snow cones, said Heather Sterzick, Sundance Airport manager. The free event is open to the public.

Flood is just happy to be flying, and to be alive. A crash in 2011 nearly ended his life.

He piloted a Bellanca 8GCBC during one of his regular shifts flying advertising banners on Aug. 2, 2011, in Egg Harbor Township, N.J. Flood’s plane crashed due to engine error at 250 feet while trying to hook an advertising banner in the field.

The majority of what Flood knows about the accident was retold to him by a police officer who found him lying unconscious among the wreckage. Flood suffered multiple injuries. He had broken ribs, he fractured his left heel and right ankle, his liver was lacerated, he lost his left kidney and spleen and he suffered a ruptured aorta. Doctors told Flood they performed a 17-pint blood transfusion at the hospital to save his life.

Flood was kept in an induced coma for three weeks. Once he awoke, he attempted to figure out where he was and what had happened.

“It just wasn’t a good, warm, fuzzy feeling to wake up to,” Flood said. “I never thought I’d fly again, nor did I think I’d ever walk again.”

The plane crash did not deter Flood from continuing his passion for aviation. Four months later, he was back piloting a Piper J-3 Cub training airplane and flying from New Jersey to Maryland. Ten months after the crash, Flood went on to place second in the Wildwoods AcroBlast competition, an aerobatic contest in his home state of New Jersey.

He relishes every opportunity to be able to pilot airplanes and perform for spectators at air shows.

“I just sit up there sometimes and cry to myself when I watch the sunset and fly,” he said.

Event performers include Kate Kyer, Justin Lewis, Kyle Franklin, Greg Koontz and the Alabama Boys and more.

The skydiving and helicopter rides are first come, first served. Those interested in skydiving must be between 8 and 18 years of age, Sterzick said.

Guests are advised to bring their own chairs, as a crowd of about 5,000 is expected. Some indoor activities will be available.

For more information, visit sundanceairport.com/discoveraviation.


Aero Tek Zuni, N22DA: Accident occurred May 03, 2014 in Aguila, Arizona

NTSB Identification: WPR14FA181
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, May 03, 2014 in Aguila, AZ
Aircraft: AERO TEK INC. ZUNI, registration: N22DA
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 May 3, 2014, about 1210 mountain standard time, an experimental exhibition Aero Tek Inc., Zuni, N22DA, sustained substantial damage when it impacted terrain during initial climb out from Sampley's Airport (28AZ) Aguila, Arizona. The glider was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The commercial pilot, sole occupant of the glider, was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight. 

The tow pilot reported that takeoff was normal and shortly after beginning the climb, the pilot noticed a lightening of the control forces. Subsequently, the pilot determined that the glider had separated from the tow line about 100 feet, above ground level. 

Examination of the accident site by National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigators revealed that the glider impacted terrain about 350 feet east of 28AZ. 

Saratoga, New York -    The 158th Fighter Wing, Vermont Air National Guard, flew over the Gerald B. H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery about 12:30 p.m. Tuesday during a military veteran's funeral.

The F-16 missing man formation flyover was for Major Gen. Robert Knauff, who retired from the New York Air National Guard after 33 years of service, according to the state Division of Military & Naval Affairs. Knauff served as both Chief of Staff and Commander of the 6,000-member force as well as the deputy adjutant general for the New York National Guard. Knauff was a former commander of the 174th Fighter Wing in Syracuse and a pilot with over 3,900 flying hours.

The low-flying F-16 "Fighting Falcon" aircraft flew at an altitude of about 1,000 feet during the ceremony.

Source:  http://www.timesunion.com

Members of the Stratton Air Force Base Honor Guard move the remains of Major General Robert Knauff, the former Commander of the N.Y. Air National Guard, during burial services at Gerald B.H. Solomon National Cemetery Tuesday afternoon, May 20, 2014, in Saratoga, N.Y. 

Members of the Stratton Air Force Base Honor Guard move the remains of Major General Robert Knauff, the former Commander of the N.Y. Air National Guard, during burial services at Gerald B.H. Solomon National Cemetery Tuesday afternoon, May 20, 2014, in Saratoga, N.Y.

Members of the 158th Fighter Wing known as the Green Mountain Boys perform the missing man formation in the skies above the Gerald B.H. Solomon National Cemetery during burial services for Major General Robert Knauff Tuesday afternoon, May 20, 2014, in Stillwater, N.Y. The retired Maj. Gen. was a former Commander of the N.Y. Air National Guard.  

Members of the 158th Fighter Wing known as the Green Mountain Boys perform the missing man formation in the skies above the Gerald B.H. Solomon National Cemetery during burial services for Major General Robert Knauff Tuesday afternoon, May 20, 2014, in Stillwater, N.Y. The retired Maj. Gen. was a former Commander of the N.Y. Air National Guard.

Retired Maj. Gen. Robert A. Knauff

LATHAM, NY (05/20/2014)  -- The 158th Fighter Wing, Vermont Air National Guard will provide a missing man formation flyover over the Gerald B. H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery in Saratoga at about 12:30 p.m. today during a military veteran's funeral.

The F-16 flyover is for Major General Robert Knauff who retired from the New York Air National Guard after 33 years of service. Knauff served with distinction as both Chief of Staff and Commander of the 6,000 member New York Air National Guard as well as the deputy adjutant general for the New York National Guard. Knauff was a former commander of the 174th Fighter Wing in Syracuse and an accomplished pilot with over 3,900 flying hours.

Area residents should not be impacted by the low-flying F-16 'Fighting Falcon' aircraft, which will be flying at an altitude of about 1,000 feet during the ceremony.

New York State Division of Military & Naval Affairs

Location:  Gerald B.H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery
Address:  200 Duell Road,  Schuylerville, NY

The Burial with full Military Honors will take place today at 12pm in Saratoga.


Positive Altitude Event Gets Kids Excited about Flying

MATHER-  Hundreds of students climbed aboard dozens of planes at a Positive Altitude event.

The California Capital Airshow uses the event to inspire students and introduce them to the world of aviation.

“The whole idea is to show a whole other generation that you can go up and fly, you can have an airplane. There are a lot of careers available in aviation,” Tony Wright, a pilot, said.

Two dozen of the kids at Sunday’s event won an essay contest and got the chance to head up into the skies and fly a plane.

“This isn’t just a joy ride. They get to learn the parts of the airplane, and fly the airplane,” Darcy Brewer, Executive Director of the California Capital Airshow said.

“It’s actually quite easy to fly. You just have to learn all the parts inside it, and you have to get used to it,” Yelena Pavles, a student, told FOX40.

Organizers hope that this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity will motivate the students for a lifetime.

Story and video: http://fox40.com

Lodging rules raise questions about AirVenture housing: Permits could be required for anyone renting homes to out of town visitors

Several property owners who try to rent spare rooms or homes to travelers through a popular Web site have been warned it’s illegal to do so without a permit, an action that could have implications for owners who rent homes during EAA AirVenture each summer.

The Winnebago County Health Department sent letters to a handful of Airbnb users earlier this month warning them they face fines if they continue to list their property on the site without a permit.

Airbnb is an online listing service that allows property owners to make their homes, spare rooms or apartments available to rent for short periods of time while traveling for business or recreation. Hotel operators, mostly in major cities, have complained about the lack of oversight and that those who list properties do not pay hotel room taxes.

Winnebago County Health Department Director Doug Gieryn said the letters from his department focused on properties listed on the website that involve the owners leaving the premises, thus making them transient properties. A bed and breakfast, on the other hand, has the owners/occupants on the premises.

In Wisconsin, it is illegal for someone to operate a bed and breakfast, hotel, motel or lodging house for more than 10 days each year without a permit.

While the letters focus on Airbnb users, the issue could have larger implications for the hundreds of property owners who rent their homes to AirVenture visitors and vendors through an Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau website.

Gieryn said he has requested more information and guidance from the state before determining how, or if, state law would impact those who rent their homes during AirVenture.

“We’re checking into it because it could have an impact,” Gieryn said. “We just need to check it out first. I know there’s some concern about it and how state code interprets the situation. We will have to work through the situation with the Convention and Visitors Bureau.”

There are more than 300 Oshkosh properties listed through the Oshkosh CVB Web site for AirVenture rentals, not counting properties in Omro, Berlin and other surrounding communities. Complicating the matter further is that the CVB has no idea exactly how many people participate or for how many days vendors or visitors stay.

“If it’s something we need to address, how do we address it because this happens for 40 years? And not every renter goes through the CVB,” Executive Director Wendy Hielsberg said. “I don’t know how many thousand homes are rented out there. We don’t even know the number of properties involved.”

EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski said a stay of 10 days or more is at the far end of the range most vendors might stay in Oshkosh. He said the organization doesn’t expect it to impact most convention-goers’ arrangements. He said EAA will work the CVB to better understand the issue as it develops.
Question of fairness?

Gieryn said the Wisconsin Bed and Breakfast Association sent out a letter calling the county’s attention to the issue. And the owners of the only licensed bed and breakfast in Oshkosh said it’s a matter of fairness.

Nicole Brayton, of Brayton’s Bed and Breakfast on Church Avenue, said she’s not concerned about AirVenture rentals as much as she is with properties that rent throughout the year without an inspection or oversight.

“We, as a business, have to get the permit and go through an inspection. I think everyone should be playing by the same rules,” she said. “I know Airbnb came about because people wanted to provide inexpensive lodging. I think it’s a great idea, but there has to be some in-between.”

Winnebago County Health Department records indicate a bed and breakfast permit costs $115, tourist rooming house $117 and a hotel/motel permit $279 to $483 depending on the number of rooms on the property.

Oshkosh resident Beth Wyman said it came as a surprise to her that she would have to get a permit if she wanted to continue to list a Waugoo Avenue property on the site. She said she learned about the Web site because her children use it when they travel.

“It was an option to generate additional revenue from it. And it’s nice to not have it sit empty,” Wyman said. “I believe some people probably are making some profit off this, but that’s not what we’re doing.”

Wyman, whose family owns and operates the Waters, added that it would be a shame to discourage people from renting their homes since Oshkosh lacks enough hotel rooms to deal with weekends crowded with events.

“We’ve got a regatta coming to town in August and there’s not a hotel room to be had. We’ve got a majority of the rooms at the Best Western booked for it, but there’s (other events) in town the same weekend,” Wyman said. “It’s great that we have all these events, but sites like Airbnb pick up the slack and keep those people here in the Oshkosh area.”

Hielsberg said she plans to check with Green Bay, Madison and other communities to see how they handle similar situations.

In Green Bay, Assistant City Attorney Jim Mueller said the community decided to regulate transient residences, more commonly called “Packer Party Houses,” through zoning regulations and by requiring operators get a conditional use permit. The property owners also have to pay room tax.

Source:    http://oshkoshhub.thenorthwestern.com

Thunder Over the Valley had thousands cheering, buzzing

Published: Tue, May 20, 2014 @ 12:00 a.m.

There was a little bit of thunder over the Valley and a whole lot of rain on Saturday, which confined crowds at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station to about half of what had been anticipated, but Sunday was a whole new day.

The sun was out, the few clouds that dotted the sky allowed a wingwalker atop a biplane to emerge even more dramatically or provided a moment of cover for an F-16 flying straight up at 500 mph. Nature, man and machine all conspired to give some 21,000 people who attended Thunder Over the Valley a day they won’t forget.

It was the first airshow at the base of Youngstown’s 910th Airlift Wing in five years and it was worth the wait.

While the Thunderbirds are the main attraction wherever they go, there was more to see and do than anyone could take in during a day or two, with or without the ’Birds.

On the ground there were aircraft, ranging from small to colossus. There were four C-130s, from Youngstown and other bases, including one in aerial spray configuration from the 910th, one in hurricane hunter configuration, and one in aeromedical evacuation configuration. There was a 173-foot long C-17 Globemaster and a 250-foot long C-5 Galaxy. Throughout the day, thousands of people walked through the giant planes, always with an airman nearby ready to answer any questions that arose. During Saturday’s showers, their huge wings provided cover for the crowds.

There were two World War II era bombers, a B-25 and a B-17, which took to the air during the aerial Warbird Parade. That parade also featured a P-51 Mustang and a BT-13 Valiant, a trainer also known as the Vibrator.

Back on the ground there were trainers of other eras, including the T-38 jet and T-6. There was also a KC-135, KC-10 Extender, a C-47, a Lifeflight helicopter and an F-16 Fighting Falcon, similar to the planes flown by the Thunderbirds.

Most of the afternoon Saturday, despite showers, and all afternoon Sunday, aerobatic displays wowed those who had made the trek to the air base. All led up to the takeoff at 4 p.m. of the Thunderbirds. For the next half hour, six F-16s put on a gobsmacking demonstration of speed, precision and daring. The only thing more impressive than the capability of the aircraft was the expertise of the pilots, Lt. Col. Greg Moseley, Maj. Joshua Boudreaux, Maj. Caroline Jensen, Maj. Curtis Dougherty, Maj. Blaine Jones and Maj. Jason Curtis.

Supporting cast of hundreds

But while the performance of the Thunderbirds was breathtaking, it is important to acknowledge the hundreds of people who made the day possible. That includes staff at the airbase, reservists, volunteers, exhibitors, military units on the ground and more than a dozen other aerial performers, R/C plane demonstrators and, of course, the U.S. Air Force Drill Team. The weekend would not have been possible without the Youngstown Air Partners and dozens of sponsors that included community groups, companies large and small and individuals.

The only sour note came for some at the end of the day as thousands of people left the grounds through two gates, and those who left by the main gate stood and watched while every bus passed them by, having been filled with people who exited from a gate farther west on King Graves Road. After about 45 minutes, a military policeman took command, and buses began to be diverted to the waiting passengers.

When the airshow was last held in 2009, parking was available at the airport. This year shuttle buses provided the transportation, and some bugs will have to be worked out of the system the next time.

With luck, and a lot of hard work, that could be as soon as two years from now, although catching the Thunderbirds again might be a longshot. The team is in high demand, especially after being grounded much of last year because of sequestration cuts. This year they are scheduled for 66 performances in 26 states and demand far exceeds availability.

Source:  http://www.vindy.com

Editorial: Cape Girardeau Regional Air Festival has strong turnout on busy weekend

 Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Perfect weather, fantastic attendance and wonderful shows made for a strong Cape Girardeau Regional Air Festival over the weekend.

The two-day air show featured amazing performances in the air and ground.

Headlining the show was the Canadian Forces Snowbirds. Other performers such as the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team and Paul Stender and the jet-powered school bus, among others, had fans excited and on their feet.

On Saturday airport manager Bruce Loy said attendance met expectations with about 12,000 to 15,000 there on Day 1. There was another strong turnout on Sunday with individuals of all ages enjoying the show and festivities at the Cape Girardeau Regional Airport. This was impressive for a busy weekend that also featured local graduations.

The air show is a significant undertaking, requiring much coordination and planning. Thank you to the sponsors for their support, and we appreciate all the volunteers and airport staff who worked to make it a success.

You can view photos from Saturday in a gallery at semissourian.com.


Air Shows rank #2 in attendance after Major League Baseball compared to all national professional "sporting" events

... According to this University of Oklahoma study:   http://www.ou.edu/deptcomm/dodjcc/groups/00C2/AIR.HTM

The Impact of Air Shows, Fly-overs, Open Houses, and Guest Days
on Public Opinion  -Jon Connor, Patricia Huizinga, Peter Kerr

Thunder Over the Valley: Spectators face delays after air show

21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio - 

  VIENNA TOWNSHIP, Ohio -  Despite soggy weekend weather, more than 30,000 people attended the Thunder Over the Valley Air Show.

On Saturday, 8,300 fought the rainy weather.  Fair skies on Sunday brought out more than 21,500 people.

The thousands of spectators may have been too much for the provided shuttle services and those in charge of the show recognize there was a problem.

The Thunderbirds took off without a hitch in front of a packed crowd, and all eyes were on the skies.

When the show was over, some show goers say they were forced to wait for a way back to their cars. Some say they waited up to three hours after the final landing at 5 p.m.

"There are logistical concerns when you get into moving that number of people from one place to another," said Master Sgt. Bob Barko, public affairs superintendent at the 910th Airlift Wing.

21 News Facebook followers shared their experiences with the long wait, so we asked about the hold up.

The airport parking lot was not permitted to be used due to Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regulations and a nearby field that was used during the last show for parking was not available this time around.

Barko says about 150 buses were used to shuttle members of the public back to their cars parked at the Eastwood Mall complex and a Delphi parking lot.

He says they plan to review and fix any issues moving forward. "You plan as best as possible to take care of it, but anything can always be better," Barko said. "It's never perfect and we take what we learned this time and we'll adjust as needed."

Moving such a sizable crowd came with challenges that authorities working the event expected.

"Part of the problem is the infrastructure around the airport," said Ernest Cook says chief deputy with the Trumbull County Sheriff's Office. "We just have two-lanes, but overall, we anticipated it would take a little bit of time."

Barko says the base has received overwhelmingly positive feedback.

It was five years since the Thunderbirds came to town and the plan is to make sure fans won't have to wait that long to see them fly again.

Story and video:  http://www.wfmj.com