Monday, September 22, 2014

Incident occurred September 22, 2014 in Perry, Ralls County, Missouri

WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio  

RALLS COUNTY, Mo. (WGEM) -   A small airplane landed Monday afternoon on Highway 19, south of Perry, Missouri, after it malfunctioned.

Witnesses near the scene told WGEM News the incident happened about 1:30 p.m., as the plane suffered some sort of fuel-line malfunction.

The out-of-state pilot was able to put the plane down safely and moved it to a nearby hangar at Barron aviation.

Workers at the hangar said the Federal Aviation Administration will arrive Tuesday to inspect the plane.

- Source:  http://www.wgem.com


Letters: Fine planes, solve two problems

Airplane noise, speed cameras and county and city budgets have received a good deal of attention in Newsday ["Rally: Aircraft noise has worsened," News, Sept. 15]. I suggest that those bothered by airplane noise mount speed cameras on their rooftops. If the planes exceed the speed limit, they will be fined, and the city or county will be able to use those fines to balance their budgets.

As an added bonus, the out-of-state company that installs the cameras and shares in the fine revenue can buy and install more cameras and generate more fines.

Burton Aronson, Bayside

Another weekend, another 60 planes over my Northport home. My neighbors and I were hoping that this constant droning would stop after Labor Day weekend, but no, the noise goes on.

Recently on a beautiful Sunday, my family was indoors with the windows closed to shut out the constant noise. Low-flying planes continue to prevent us from enjoying our home, which is 21 miles from Republic Airport and 23 miles from Long Island MacArthur Airport. We have lived in Northport for 15 years, and this nerve-wracking noise is pretty new. Why has this happened?

I wonder if the Federal Aviation Administration has shifted the flight path of the small planes, seaplanes, helicopters and small jets east to accommodate the new NextGen system at Kennedy and LaGuardia airports. Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington) is calling for reduced noise levels from those airports. Will the Northport route be abandoned once this system is in place? Is there any relief in sight?

Judy Hanson, Northport


Source:   http://www.newsday.com/opinion

Passengers bused to Charleston after plane makes emergency landing in Columbia, South Carolina

Passengers of a United Airlines flight will be bused to Charleston after their plane was struck by lightning.

Kaela Harmon with the Columbia Metropolitan Airport confirms a United Airlines flight flying from Chicago to Charleston was diverted to Columbia to make an emergency landing after being struck. However, officials say the plane has been checked and no major issues were discovered.

The plane, however, will not be cleared for takeoff tonight according to Harmon and passengers will be bused to Charleston.

A source tells WIS the flight was traveling through storm clouds. The plane did experience some turbulence before and after being struck by lightning.

Harmon says the plane was examined after landing in Columbia and no major issues were discovered. However, officials took the precaution of keeping the plane grounded following the incident.

"Safety is absolutely the number one issue," Harmon said.


- Source:  http://www.wistv.com

Manweiler Acro Sport II, Biplane Crazy LLC, N94SM: Fatal accident occurred September 20, 2014 in Middletown, Ohio

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA507
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 20, 2014 in Middletown, OH
Aircraft: MANWEILLER ACRO SPORT II, registration: N94SM
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 20, 2014, about 0857 eastern daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Manweiler Acro Sport II airplane, N94SM, impacted buildings and terrain near Middletown, Ohio, and a ground fire subsequently occurred. Both airplane occupants were private pilots and were fatally injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to and operated by Biplane Crazy LLC under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual flight rules conditions prevailed for the flight, which did not operate on a flight plan. The local flight originated from the Butler County Regional Airport-Hogan Field (HAO), near Hamilton, Ohio, about 0830.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector interviewed a witness, who was outside in her driveway, when she heard the aircraft approaching. She said it was at a lower altitude than she normally sees aircraft in the area. As it was coming toward her from east to west it started to pitch, nose up, into what she said looked like a loop. As it got to the top of the looping maneuver, and an instant before it started down, the sound of the engine stopped. The aircraft then entered a spiralling, spinning maneuver, which continued until she lost sight of the aircraft behind some trees. She then heard the sound of an engine, consistent with the pilot adding engine power, followed immediately by the sound of impact. She told her husband to call 911 and report the accident. She then "grabbed" a neighbor, who is an EMT, and went to the crash site to try to help. The aircraft was engulfed in flames when they arrived, and they were unable to help. The inspector had her demonstrate what she saw with a model airplane. The demonstration was consistent with an attempted loop with a spin out of the top of the maneuver.


PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The 49-year-old pilot in the front seat held a FAA private pilot certificate with airplane single engine land and instrument airplane ratings. He held a FAA Third Class Medical Certificate issued on November 12, 2013. This medical certificate was issued without any limitations. The pilot reported on the application for that medical certificate that he had accumulated 1,525 hours of total flight time and 75 hours in the six months prior to the medical examination. This pilot's reported weight was 187 pounds at the time of the medical examination. The pilot recorded in his logbook that he had accumulated 1,662.1 hours of total flight time, 41 hours of flight time in the 90 days prior to the accident, 12 hours of flight time in the 30 days prior to the accident, and 6 hours of flight time in the accident airplane.

The 40-year-old pilot rated passenger in the rear seat held a FAA private pilot certificate with an airplane single engine land rating. He was issued a FAA Third Class Medical Certificate on June 4, 2008. This medical certificate was issued without any limitations. The pilot reported on the application for that medical certificate that he had accumulated 900 hours of total flight time and 0 hours in the six months prior to the medical examination. This pilot's reported weight was 232 pounds at the time of the medical examination. The pilot recorded in his logbook that he had accumulated 906.5 hours of total flight time, 24.5 hours of flight time in the 90 days prior to the accident, 2 hours of flight time in the 30 days prior to the accident, and 2 hours of flight time in the accident airplane.


AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

N94SM was a plans-built, experimental, amateur-built Manweiler Acro Sport II airplane with serial number 733. The airplane's plan included a short wing span biplane design with a conventional tail wheel configuration, open cockpits, and faring covered fixed main landing gear. Its structure was a fabric-covered steel tube fuselage and empennage group with a wood wing structure. A 200-horsepower Lycoming IO-360-A1A engine, with serial number L-17470-51A, powered the airplane. Review of an FAA 8050-2 bill of sale form revealed that the airplane was purchased on July 26, 2014. According to an owner's representative, the airplane last condition inspection was completed on August 28, 2014 and it accumulated 596 hours of total flight time at the time of that inspection.


METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

At 0853, the recorded weather at HAO was: Wind calm, visibility 6 statute miles; present weather mist; sky condition few clouds at 4,700 feet; temperature 16 degrees C; dew point 13 degrees C; altimeter 30.10 inches of mercury.


WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The airplane impacted buildings about 200 feet northeast of the intersection of Willow Creek Drive and Sunrise View Circle. FAA inspectors examined and documented the accident site and wreckage. The exterior wall of garage near where the airplane came to rest exhibited an opening and slash marks consistent with an airplane with a rotating propeller breaching that wall. The airplane came to rest upright in the rear yard of the house. The airplane, forward of its empennage, was discolored, deformed, and charred, with sections consumed by fire. The inspectors' examination and review of their accident site pictures did not reveal any preimpact flight control anomalies that would have precluded operation of the airplane.


MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the front seated pilot by the Butler County Coroner's Office. The autopsy indicated that injuries sustained during the accident were the cause of his death.

An autopsy was performed on the rear seated pilot rated passenger by the Butler County Coroner's Office. The autopsy indicated that cranial trauma was the cause of his death.

The FAA Civil Aerospace Medical Institute prepared Final Forensic Toxicology Accident Reports for both pilots from samples taken during their autopsies. The report on each pilot was negative for the tests performed.


FIRE

The impacted house did not reveal any discoloration. The localized area where the airplane came to rest exhibited discoloration and charred vegetation consistent with a ground fire.


TESTS AND RESEARCH

The wreckage was recovered to a storage facility. An FAA inspector and an air safety investigator from the engine manufacturer examined the accident engine on October 7, 2014. There was evidence of a post impact fire resulting in engine damage. A thumb compression was observed on undamaged cylinders. Damaged cylinders were removed and inspected, where no damage to valves, pistons, rings, or cylinder walls were noted. Crankshaft continuity was confirmed by observing accessory gear rotation at the rear of the engine and movement of each piston and its rod while rotating the propeller hub by hand. Camshaft continuity was confirmed when the propeller hub was rotated by hand. All intake and exhaust valves moved through the opening and closing sequence. No preimpact anomalies were detected that would have precluded engine operation.

Radar return data was gathered by a National Transportation Safety Board air traffic control specialist. The specialist produced an illustration that depicted the accident flight's path. The illustration is appended to the docket material associated with this case.

A weight and balance calculation was conducted using a weight and balance worksheet dated August 6, 1994, which was forwarded by an airplane owner's representative. Assuming no weight in the baggage compartment, the calculation, using the pilot and pilot rated passengers weight listed on their last medical forms plus 15 pound parachutes, revealed that the airplane was below the maximum "allowable" weight listed on the worksheet and within the maximum and minimum center of gravity limit, at both maximum and minimum fuel amounts.


ADDITIONAL DATA/INFORMATION

The investigation could not determine which airplane occupant was manipulating the flight controls during the accident flight.


http://registry.faa.gov/N94SM  

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA507 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 20, 2014 in Middletown, OH
Aircraft: MANWEILLER ACRO SPORT II, registration: N94SM
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 may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On September 20, 2014, about 0857 eastern daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Manweiler Acro Sport II airplane, N94SM, impacted buildings and terrain near Middletown, Ohio, and a ground fire subsequently occurred. Both airplane occupants were private pilots and were fatally injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to and operated by Biplane Crazy LLC under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual flight rules conditions prevailed for the flight, which did not operate on a flight plan. The local flight originated from the Butler County Regional Airport-Hogan Field (HAO), near Hamilton, Ohio, about 0830.

The airplane was observed in aerobatic maneuvers during the flight.

The pilot in the front seat held a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) private pilot certificate with airplane single engine land and instrument airplane ratings. He held a FAA Third Class Medical Certificate issued in November of 2013.

The pilot in the rear seat held a FAA private pilot certificate with an airplane single engine land rating. He was issued a FAA Third Class Medical Certificate in June of 2008.

N94SM was a plans-built, experimental, amateur-built Manweiler Acro Sport II airplane with serial number 733. The airplane's plan included a short wing span biplane design with a conventional tail wheel configuration, open cockpits, and faring covered fixed main landing gear. Its structure was a fabric-covered steel tube fuselage and empennage group with a wood wing structure. A 200-horsepower Lycoming IO-360-A1A engine powered the airplane.

At 0853, the recorded weather at HAO was: Wind calm, visibility 6 statute miles; present weather mist; sky condition few clouds at 4,700 feet; temperature 16 degrees C; dew point 13 degrees C; altimeter 30.10 inches of mercury.

The airplane impacted buildings about 200 feet northeast of the intersection of Willow Creek Drive and Sunrise View Circle. The airplane subsequently impacted terrain where a ground fire occurred.

The Butler County Coroner was asked to conduct an autopsy on both pilots to include toxicological testing.


Any witnesses should email witness@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP —The family of two brothers killed in a weekend plane crash released a statement to the media on Tuesday. 

 Jeff and Steve Krummen died when the biplane they were in crashed in a Liberty Township neighborhood. Both men died at the scene.

In the statement, the Krummen family said both men had "great integrity and character, mentors to many, incredible fathers and husbands, sons and brothers."

The brothers were married with three children each, the family said.

"Jeff and Steve were brothers who grew up the best of friends, enjoyed many of the same hobbies and activities together. They shared the love of flying together … and tragically died together," the family said.

Each man had more than 20 years of flying experience, the family said.

"Our thoughts, prayers and or hearts go out the neighborhood families that were affected by this tragedy. We are very thankful that no one else was injured," the family said. "If the world had more Steve's and Jeff's it would be a better place."

The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

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



Jeff and Steve Krummen


HAMILTON, Ohio —Federal investigators want to know why a plane capable of doing aerobatic maneuvers crashed in a suburban Butler County neighborhood on Saturday.

In the meantime, a WLWT investigation is taking a closer look at the rules governing planes flying over neighborhoods and backyards.

Retired airline captain Jon Thocker is a pilot who loves to fly, and he loves his Van's RV-8 airplane.

Not only can the plane help him take a quick trip to Florida, but it can also do some tricked-out stunts high overhead. Since that's the case, Thocker loves to take part in airshows in the Tri-State and elsewhere.

"We fly as a 2-shift formation team, Redline Airshows," Thocker said. "And also for a larger team, Team Aerodynamics, based in Charlotte, North Carolina."

As someone steeped in the airshow world, Thocker said the rules are clear.

"No you shouldn't, in a populated area, look up and see an airplane doing aerobatics. We have to do them over sparsely populated areas and there are certain altitude restrictions that we can do them," Thocker said.

In fact, Federal Aviation Administration regulations state the following:

(FAR 91.303) No person may operate an aircraft in aerobatic flight -
(a) Over any congested area of a city, town, or settlement;
(b) Over an open-air assembly of persons;
(c) Within the lateral boundaries of the surface areas of Class B, Class C, Class D, or Class E airspace designated for an airport;
(d) Within four nautical miles of the centerline of any federal airway;
(e) Below an altitude of 1,500 feet above the surface; or
(f) When flight visibility is less than three statute miles.

But Thocker said unless a pilot is properly trained; the rules listed above can be hazy when a pilot is high above the horizon.

Thocker said he also knows that more and more flyers will continue to push the envelope in planes that can do more and more things in the sky.

"It's a very fun thing to do, but sometimes it gets guys in trouble because they haven't been formally trained," Thocker said.

WLWT's Todd Dykes talked to Thocker at the Butler County Regional Airport where he supports creating an aerobatic practice area. But so far that's just an idea.

Thocker said one other point to consider is the fact that the public can sometimes think they're seeing a stunt in the sky when, in reality, it's just part of a routine pilot training session.

Story and Video:    http://www.wlwt.com


LIBERTY TWP, OH (FOX19) - Two brothers who died Saturday in a Liberty Township plane crash have been identified as 49-year-old Jeff Krummen and 40-year-old Steven Krummen.

The men were inside a small two-seater plane when it went down between houses on Sunrise View Circle, hitting one of the homes before bursting into flames. Jeff was a resident of West Chester and Steven of Mason, according to the coroner's report.

Authorities responded to the residential street around 9 a.m. Saturday after multiple callers reported seeing a plane crash in the area.

"I'm pretty sure I saw a plane falling out of the sky," a witness told emergency dispatch on Saturday morning.

Jeff and Steven were reportedly still inside the burning plane when authorities arrived. The brothers were pronounced dead at the scene.

911 audio from the crash was released Monday, giving insight to the alarming moments after witnesses saw the plane go down.

"A plane just crashed into the backyard of my neighbor's house," another 911 caller said. Both houses were occupied during the crash but all residents were uninjured, according to authorities.

Witnesses on the scene said the plane was performing spirals in the air before crashing. Authorities are still investigating the accident.



Captain Doron: RV7 Test Flight - Stalls (part 2)

 
 Published on September 22, 2014
http://youtu.be/sxzcwhLoMTA

Aspen Avionics gets Federal Aviation Administration approval for software trial

Albuquerque-based Aspen Avionics Inc. received approval from the FAA to offer airline companies 10 free trial hours of a new synthetic-vision software, the company said in a news release.

The Evolution Synthetic Vision software gives pilots a simulated display of terrain, obstacles and traffic. The company says this makes it especially useful in low-visibility situations.

The free trial of the software will be included in each purchase of Aspen's EFD1000 Pro Primary Flight Display. The full software sells for $2,995.

- Source:   http://www.bizjournals.com

Brupbacher CB2000, N5002E: Fatal accident occurred September 21, 2014 in Reserve, Louisiana

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA508
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 21, 2014 in Reserve, LA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/01/2015
Aircraft: BRUPBACHER CHRIS CB2000, registration: N5002E
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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

Witnesses reported observing the gyroplane take off from the runway, turn left onto the crosswind leg, and climb to about 200 ft. They then saw something fall off the gyroplane before it crashed into an adjacent canal and sank. Postaccident examination revealed that the flight control rod bearing stud exhibited extensive corrosion, consistent with the crack being present before impact. When the rod bearing failed, the main rotor blades went to full pitch, which placed an excessive load on the rotor mast. The rotor mast then folded, which allowed the pusher propeller to strike and sever the tail. The pilot had owned the airplane for 3 years; no records for the gyroplane were located.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The failure of the flight control rod bearing due to an undetected preexisting corrosion-induced crack, which resulted in the main rotor blades going to full pitch and the rotor mast folding; this allowed the pusher propeller to strike and sever the tail. 

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 21, 2014, about 1720 central daylight time (2220 UTC), a Brupbacher CB2000 gyroplane, N5002E, impacted a canal in Reserve, Louisiana, after an unknown item was observed separating from the gyroplane. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The gyroplane was destroyed. The gyroplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The local flight had just originated from St. John the Baptist Parish Airport (1L0), Reserve, Louisiana.

Witnesses reported seeing the gyroplane take off on runway 35, turn left onto the crosswind leg, and climb to about 200 feet. They "saw something fall" off the gyroplane, then the rotor blades folded, and the gyroplane crashed into a canal and sank.


DAMAGE TO AIRCRAFT

The wreckage was recovered from the canal the next day



PERSONNEL (CREW) INFORMATION

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the 47-year-old pilot held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating. He was not gyroplane rated. He also held a third class airman medical certificate, dated January 22, 2014, with no restrictions or limitations. According to his application for medical certification, the pilot estimated he had accumulated 260 total flight hours, 40 hours of which were accrued in the previous six months. Since his logbook was not recovered, his flight time in the gyroplane could not be determined. However, records show the pilot had owned the gyroplane for three months.


AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

According to FAA records, N5002E (serial number H2-02-13-546), a model CB2000 was an amateur homebuilt gyroplane constructed by a Chris Brupbacher in 2003. A certificate of airworthiness was issued to the pilot on June 16, 2014. The gyroplane was powered by Subaru 2200 cc, 4-cycle, liquid cooled automotive engine, rated at 130 horsepower.

Some aircraft paperwork was recovered from the canal. After being dried out, no useful information was obtained.


METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

The following weather observations were recorded at the Louis Armstrong-New Orleans International Airport, located 18 miles east of, and nearest to, the accident location:

1653: Wind, 050 degrees at 5 knots; visibility, 10 miles; sky condition, 4000 feet scattered; temperature, 31 degrees Centigrade (C.); dew point, 19 degrees C.; altimeter setting, 29.97 inches of mercury

1753: Wind, 050 degrees at 6 knots; visibility, 10 miles,; sky condition, clear; temperature, 30 degrees C.; dew point, 18 degrees C; altimeter, 29.97 inches of mercury.


AERODROME INFORMATION

St. John the Baptist Parish Airport (1L0) is located 2 miles northwest of Reserve, Louisiana, and 18 miles west of New Orleans, Louisiana. It is situated 7 feet above sea level and is equipped with two runways, 17-35: 3,999 feet x 75 feet, asphalt.


WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

Airworthiness and operations inspectors from the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Baton Rouge Flight Standards District Office went to the accident site and examined the wreckage. The gyrocopter impacted in standing water. Once removed, the main rotor mast was observed in a folded position. The rudder was separated from the wreckage and exhibited damage consistent with contact from the pusher propeller. The tail boom and vertical stabilizer were separated from the main wreckage. Examination of the flight control linkage revealed one flight control rod bearing stud fractured. The fracture surface contained corrosion, consistent with the crack being present prior to impact. An additional control rod bearing had surface corrosion similar to the corrosion present on the fractured bearing stud.


MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was conducted by the New Orleans, Louisiana, Forensic Center. The autopsy report did not state a cause of death. The autopsy report was reviewed by FAA's research medical officer, who cited the cause of death to be "multiple traumatic injuries."

According to the toxicology report, diphenhydramine was detected in the pilot's urine, and 0.027 (ug/ml, ug/g) diphenhydramine was detected in blood (cavity). No carbon monoxide or ethanol was detected.


According to FAA's medical officer's review, diphenhydramine (Benadryl®, Unisom®) is an antihistamine used for treating allergic reactions, and is also used as a sedative because it causes drowsiness.


NTSB Identification: CEN14LA508 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 21, 2014 in Reserve, LA
Aircraft: BRUPBACHER CHRIS CB2000, registration: N5002E
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 may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On September 21, 2014, about 1720 central daylight time, a Brupbacher CB2000 gyroplane, N5002E, impacted water in Reserve, Louisiana, after an unknown item was observed separating from the gyroplane. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The gyroplane was destroyed. The gyroplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The local flight had just originated from St. John the Baptist Parish Airport (1L0), Reserve, Louisiana.

Witnesses reported seeing the gyroplane take off on runway 35, turn left onto the crosswind leg, and climb to about 200 feet. They saw "something fall off" the gyroplane, then the rotor blades folded, and the gyroplane crashed into a canal and submerged.


This undated file photo shows the homebuilt gyrocopter that crashed in Reserve, killing two people. The aircraft was sold and painted red after this photo was made. 
(Photo courtesy of Rommel Dorado.)


A preliminary report by the FAA into a fatal crash of a gyrocopter at the St. John the Baptist Parish airport on Sunday indicates that corroded flight control rod bearings caused the aircraft's rotor blades to break shortly after takeoff, a National Transportation Safety Board investigator said Tuesday (Sept. 23). After the blades broke, the aircraft plunged into a water-filled canal, killing two people. 

The rod bearings, according to aviation experts, hold the rotor blades in place and allow the pilot to control the aircraft.

The pilot, 47-year-old Darren Mahler of Metairie, and his passenger, 13-year-old Payton Wilt, a family friend and neighbor, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Gyrocopters are slim, light aircraft that are similar to helicopters. They are equipped with a both propeller and a rotary blade. They are classified as experimental because they often are built by amateurs from kits, and the FAA does not certify either the kit or the builder.

Mahler's aircraft was, according to the FAA registry, built from a kit and certified airworthy in 2003. It was registered to Mahler in June.

Federal Aviation Administration and airport officials spent much of Monday recovering the wreckage from the canal and examining it for clues.

"They examined all of the wreckage, that's what they found," NTSB investigator Arnold Scott said.

The tail boom, or rudder, of the aircraft also was sheared off when it came into contact with the push propeller blades, Scott said.

Scott said he doesn't know if the corroded bearings would have been visible during a pre-flight inspection by the pilot, and said he didn't know when the gyrocopter received its last maintenance inspection by the FAA.

"The maintenance records were in the water," Scott said. "We're drying them out."

The investigation is ongoing, and Scott said he was still waiting on an autopsy and toxicology report on the pilot.

While it may be weeks before a final report on the cause of the crash is filed, the preliminary findings are consistent with the mechanical problems described by Joey Murray, a Port of South Louisiana Commissioner and chairman of the Aviation Committee, who witnessed the takeoff and the crash.

Murray has said that the aircraft made it about 300 feet down the runway before taking off about 30 feet into the air, where it flew for about 1,000 feet.

The aircraft then rose to 300 feet as it crossed the end of the runway and took a westward turn. As the plane shifted direction, its top blades "folded upward" and the plane quickly descended into a canal where it was submerged, Murray said.

Authorities say that Mahler, who housed the aircraft at the Reserve airport, had taken several flights earlier in the day. 


http://www.nola.com


 

 The aircraft that crashed Sunday in St. John the Baptist Parish, killing both occupants, was identified by authorities as a gyrocopter: a slim, light helicopter equipped with a propeller and a rotary blade with a cabin smaller than a Smart car.

Gyroplanes are still classified by the Federal Aviation Authority as experimental aircraft, but that does not mean that they are necessarily more dangerous, said Brent Drake, a board member at the Popular Rotorcraft Association, who specializes in gyroplanes.

"It's one of the safest flying machines out there," said Drake, who said that he has logged 1,500 hours flying the aircrafts since 1974. 

Rather, gyroplanes are classified as experimental because they are often built by amateurs from kits and the FAA does not certify either the kit or the person who puts it together, said a spokesperson for the agency.

That may very well have been the case with the aircraft that crashed outside of St. John the Baptist Parish Airport on Sunday, killing pilot Darren Mahler, 47, and Payton Wilt, 13. (Learn more about the crash here.)

Records at the FAA show that the aircraft was "amateur built" and first registered under the name of metro area resident Chris Brupbacher under a singular model number that carried Brupbacher's initials: a CB2000. The aircraft was first registered as flight worthy in 2003 but only recently registered under Mahler's name, in June 2014. Brupbacher was not immediately available for comment.

Wilt's stepfather, Stephen Costanza, said Monday that he had seen Mahler building the gyrocopter from a kit in his garage in Metairie. 

Drake said that the aircraft are relatively safe because if their motor fails, the rotor that gives the craft its lift will continue to turn so that the aircraft hovers down to the ground at the "speed of a parachute," Drake said.

"The top rotor blade is always in auto rotation so that if something fails, the motor quits or something like that it will just come straight down like a maple speed comes down, at the speed of a parachute," Drake said. "But it's just like any machine: There's always a risk."
Mahler would have been well prepared to fly the aircraft if he had a private pilot license, which covers the flight of rotorcraft including gyroplanes, Drake said. The Flight Academy of New Orleans LLC listed Mahler as a graduate of its program, having received a private pilot license. 

Drake said that gyroplanes have become increasingly popular since invented in the 1920s and that several sheriff's departments, including one in Alabama, have used the aircraft for patrols. "They will do about anything a helicopter will do except for hover and they will do it for about a fraction of the cost," Drake said. 

- Source:  http://www.nola.com

Any witnesses should email witness@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.


AIRCRAFT BROKE UP IN FLIGHT SHORTLY AFTER TAKEOFF. EXPERIMENTAL CB2000 ROTORCRAFT. RESERVE, LA 

DARREN J.   MAHLER:  http://registry.faa.gov/N5002E 
 


Cessna 172: Accident occurred September 22, 2014 in Lannon, Waukesha County, Wisconsin

Two people were injured when their small plane crashed Monday along the Bugline Trail in Lannon.

The 79-year-old pilot and a 46-year-old passenger had just taken off from the Capitol Drive Airport in Brookfield when the Cessna 172 single-engine plane experienced engine failure, Lannon Police Chief Mark Flessert said.

The pilot tried to make an emergency landing shortly after 11 a.m. but struck trees, shearing off the tail section along the heavily used recreational trail in the Waukesha County Parks system that runs through Lannon, Sussex and other communities.

Authorities were notified by a passersby.

The pilot suffered head trauma and facial injuries. The passenger was also injured, though Flessert didn't know the extent of his wounds. He said both men's injuries were non-life threatening. They were taken to Froedtert Hospital.

"The occupants were fairly lucky because the crash was cushioned by the trees. Instead of coming in nose down, the wings were lodged in the trees," Flessert said. "The cockpit portion was at ground level but the trees absorbed most of the hit. They were able to crawl out of the plane."

Some fuel leaked at the scene from the plane, which was carrying a full fuel tank, though the aircraft didn't ignite. No one was using the trail at the time of the crash.

Flessert did not know the men's destination. FAA officials were called to the scene to investigate the crash.

The wreckage was cleared away shortly after 3 p.m.


http://www.jsonline.com

WAUKESHA COUNTY - A pilot and his passenger had some tense moments in Lannon on Monday. Their small plane made an emergency landing on the Bugline Recreational Trail.

Authorities are still trying to figure out what happened.

“It was very scary,” notes Vickie Lemke of Lemke Stone. “If they would’ve been a couple of feet different, they could’ve gone into the quarry, and maybe hit a stonewall and not survive. By the grace of God, they’re here. We’re very thankful for that.”

Dan Yendrzeski lives about a quarter mile away from the scene.

“I could still hear the plane because he was so low, and all of a sudden, nothing,” recalls Yendrzeski. “I didn’t actually hear it crash. I just heard it stop running.”

Authorities say the pilot was a 79-year-old man from Pewaukee. His passenger is a 46 year old man from India.  Vickie Lemke says the plane nearly landed in a quarry. One of her foreman heard it go down. The men will survive. They were taken to the hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Story and Comments:  http://www.jrn.com



de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300, Hevilift, P2-KSF: Accident occurred September 20, 2014 near Port Moresby-Jacksons International Airport (POM) , Papua New Guinea

 





The Catholic Bishop of Bereina in the Central Province, Bishop RochusTatamai, has expressed his heartfelt condolences to the victims of the Hevilift Twin Otter air crash which occurred on Saturday 20 September 2014.

The aircraft had been chartered by the‘Our Lady of Fatima’parish in Woitape to bring supplies, and was en route to Port Moresby after having completed the charted flight, when it met its fate.

Passengers on board were locals from Goilala, travelling to Port Moresby on personal business.

“Although all the technical aspects of the incident pertain to the air company and the authorities, it was our parish of Our Lady of Fatima in Woitape that chartered the flight to bring in much needed supplies; and those who died or were injured on the way back to Port Moresby were people from our Goilala villages.”

“The seven passengers on board were traveling to Port Moresby for their own purposes,they were not in a Church sponsored activity”, said Bishop Rochus Tatamai.

A catholic priest ordained in 2010, 36-year-old Father John Paul Aihi was also a passenger on board the flight who managed to escape with minor injuries.

“I was at the back of the 12-seat aircraft”, he said in a phone call with a Catholic reporter this morning.

“As soon as we came out of the clouds, I saw the trees coming towards us. I spontaneously thought the pilot would immediately lift the plane; instead after a very few seconds we crashed”, said Father John.

It was also confirmed by Bishop Rochus that the passenger who perished at the crash site was Joseph Michael from Ononghe village.

The other passenger who died a day later in hospital from injuries sustained from the crash, was Pio Mark from Kosipe village.

Only one passenger remains in the hospital, whilst all others have been discharged.

The death toll of the ill fated Hevilift Twin Otter crash now stands at four: the Australian pilot and three PNG nationals, including the 25-year-old co-pilot Kristi Baru of Eastern Highlands and Manus.

Hevilift released a statement that said it would be "conducting a thorough investigation" and was "cooperating with all relevant authorities to determine the cause".

The Twin Otter aircraft registered P2-KSF and operated by HeviLift impacted terrain near the top of Mt. Lawes, 12 kilometres east north east of Jacksons Airport at approximately 9:35am.

The aircraft was conducting a charter flight from Woitape to Port Moresby. Of the nine persons on board, four including the two pilots, did not survive the impact.

The PNG Accident Investigation Commission dispatched investigators by helicopter to the accident site. A full investigation into the factors underlying the accident will be conducted by the PNG AIC, and a Preliminary Report will be published within 30 days.
 
- Source:   http://www.emtv.com.pg

 

Piper PA-28R-180 Cherokee Arrow, N4618J: Fatal accident occurred September 20, 2014 in Saratoga, Wyoming

KURTIS L. JOLLEY: http://registry.faa.gov/N4618J

NTSB Identification: WPR14FA382
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 20, 2014 in Saratoga, WY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/25/2016
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28R-180, registration: N4618J
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 private pilot was conducting a personal cross-country flight. The airplane took off on a moonless night from an uncontrolled rural airport that resides in rolling prairie grass and has a sparse population. The airplane wreckage was found by a local rancher the morning after the accident. The airplane had collided with terrain that was about 100 ft above the airport elevation, 1.3 miles southeast from the center of the runway. The initial point of impact was a shallow 7-ft-long ground scar that contained green/blue lens fragments from the right wing tip. The ground scar was oriented in a direct line with the main wreckage on a magnetic bearing of 240 degrees. 

Based on the direction of the ground scar, it is likely that the airplane took off from runway 23 and drifted south without establishing a positive climb rate and then impacted the slightly elevated terrain southeast of the airport. Additionally, the environment southeast of the airport lacked ground features and lighted buildings or roads, which, on a moonless night, would produce very dark conditions with no ground references or natural horizon. The private pilot had no significant instrument or night flying experience. 

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

The pilot’s failure to maintain a positive climb rate after takeoff in dark, night conditions, which resulted in his controlled flight into terrain due to the lack of ground references or natural horizon.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 20, 2014, about 2315 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA28R-180, N4618J, impacted terrain about 1.3 miles southeast of the Shively Field Airport, Saratoga, Wyoming. The private pilot and student pilot were fatally injured, and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to a private individual, and operated by the private pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 91. Dark night conditions prevailed for the flight, and a visual flight rules flight plan had not been filed. The flight originated from Shively Field Airport about 2314, and was destined for Denver, Colorado.

The airplane wreckage was found by a local rancher about 0815 on September 21. First responders confirmed both occupants were fatalities. The initial point of impact was a shallow 7-foot-long ground scar that was oriented in direct line with the main wreckage on a magnetic bearing of 240 degrees. The main wreckage was located 130 feet from the initial point of impact on the same bearing.

The registered owner of the airplane stated that he received a voice message from the pilot on September 20, which was time stamped 2303 mountain daylight time. In the message, the pilot stated that they were in Saratoga, and were preflighting the airplane in the dark. The registered owner returned the call at 2331, which went unanswered by the pilot.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 52, held a private pilot certificate for airplane single-engine land issued May 26, 2014, and a third-class medical certificate issued September 9, 2013, with the limitation that he must wear corrective lenses and that the medical certificate was not valid after September 30, 2015. Examination of the pilot's logbook revealed that as of September 20th he had 209.8 total flight hours, 45.1 hours in the make and model of the accident airplane, 12.9 hours within the previous 30 days, 3.3 hours of simulated instrument time, and 4.7 hours of night time.

The student pilot, age 54, held a student pilot certificate/third-class medical certificate issued September 18, 2013, with the limitation that she must wear corrective lenses for near and distant vision. Examination of her logbook revealed that as of her last logged instructional flight on August 26, 2014, she had 7.2 flight hours

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The four-seat, low-wing, retractable landing gear airplane, serial number 28R-30501, was manufactured in 1968. It was powered by a Lycoming IO-360-B1E, 180-hp engine, and equipped with a Hartzell model HC-C2YK-1B two-bladed constant speed propeller. Examination of the airplane maintenance records revealed that an annual inspection had been completed on May 19, 2014, at a recorded tachometer reading of 2,136.24 hours. The airspeed indicator, landing gear warning horn, and the throttle gear warning microswitch were replaced on September 10, 2014, at a recorded tachometer time of 2,170.07 hours. The most recent maintenance was a new altitude encoder mount installed on September 18, 2014. The tachometer reading recorded after the accident was 2,191.33 hours.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

Meteorological conditions recorded by the Automated Weather Observation System (AWOS) at Shively Field at 2335 was wind from 140 degrees at 5 knots, 10 statute miles visibility, clear sky, temperature 13 degrees centigrade, dew point 06 degrees centigrade, and altimeter setting of 30.36 inHg.

Astronomical conditions were determined using moon rise and set tables for September 2014. The moon set at 1705 MDT on September 20, which would have resulted in no moon illumination at the time of the accident.

AERODROME INFORMATION

Shively Field Airport (KSAA) is an uncontrolled airport located in Saratoga, Wyoming, in the southeast corner of the town. Shively Field's elevation is 7,015 feet mean sea level (msl), and has a single 8,801 foot by 100 foot runway oriented 050/230 degrees magnetic. Aircraft parking apron and airport entrance are located at the eastern end of the airport (near the approach end of runway 23). It utilizes a common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF) on 122.8 kHz for aircraft position reporting and coordination. Runway lighting consists of medium intensity runway lights (MIRL) along both sides of the runway, and is pilot activated through the CTAF. The airport beacon alternates white-green, and operates from dusk to dawn. An automated weather observation system (AWOS-3PT) broadcasts weather information on 118.175 kHz.

WRECKAGE & IMPACT INFORMATION

The terrain consisted of rolling hills, prairie grass, and sage brush. The wreckage was located at a terrain elevation that was approximately 100 feet above the runway elevation. The initial point of impact was a shallow 7-foot-long ground scar that contained green/blue lens fragments. The ground scar was oriented in direct line of the main wreckage on a magnetic bearing of 240 degrees. The main wreckage was located 130 feet from the initial point of impact on the same bearing. The airplane was upright oriented on a bearing of 212 degrees magnetic. The cockpit had split open behind the engine firewall, the left wing was attached, and the right wing had separated at the wing root. The fuselage behind the cabin and tail appeared undamaged. The propeller had separated from the engine at the crankshaft flange. The engine remained on the engine mount, but displaced down and to the right.

The fuselage was examined while on the scene of the accident. The left wing was attached, and the right wing was separated at the wing root. The vertical stabilizer, rudder, and horizontal stabilator were present on the aft fuselage, and exhibited minimal damage. The stabilator trim drum exhibited 4 threads (neutral). The engine was attached to the engine mount, which was partially attached to the firewall. The instrument panel was impact damage. The pilot's control yoke was seized; the copilot's control yoke had separated from the control shaft. Control continuity was established from all control surfaces forward to the cabin area with some restriction due to impact damage to the airframe, which restricted cable movement. There was no separation of control cables, and all control cables were attached to their respective bell cranks.

The left wing exhibited leading edge crushing, and 45° buckling of the upper wing skin from mid span to the trailing edge. The fuel cap was in place. A bluish fluid could be seen in the tank through the filler port when the fuel cap was removed. The flap was in the up position, and the landing gear was extended with the over center lock in the lock position. The aileron was attached to its hinge, and the balance weight was present.

The right wing was separated from the fuselage at the wing root, but the aft spar remained connected to the airframe. The wing tip leading edge indicated aft and upward crushing. The flap was folded under the wing. The aileron and balance weight were present. The fuel cap was in place, and fuel was observed at the tab level when viewed through the filler port. The landing gear was extended, and the over center lock was locked.

The cockpit was split open behind the firewall. The wind screen was not present and revealed the entire cockpit and cabin area. The right cockpit floor section by the rudder pedals was deformed inward. The right yoke had separated from the control shaft; the left yoke remained in place. The right seat had separated from the rails; the left seat remained on the rails. Two iPads that were in the cockpit had been ejected out and forward of the fuselage. The iPads were sent to the NTSB Vehicle Recorders Lab for examination. The laboratory technicians were unsuccessful in their attempts to unlock and recover data from either iPad.

The engine was attached to the engine mount, which was partially attached to the fire wall. The propeller had separated from the engine at the crankshaft flange. The throttle cable was connected to the throttle body, the propeller condition cable was attached to the propeller governor control arm, and the mixture cable was broken from the fork and exhibited overload signatures. The vacuum pump was removed; it could be rotated by hand, plastic shear drive coupling was intact. The vacuum pump was disassembled; the rotor was intact and all vanes showed even ware with no signs of binding. The top spark plugs were removed, Champion REM40E's, and exhibited normal worn wear according to the Champion Check-A-Plug chart. The engine crankshaft was rotated using the vacuum pump drive. Thumb compression was achieved on all four cylinders, and the valves moved in sequence. The fuel distribution valve was removed, and fuel/fluid was observed in the valve. The fuel injectors were removed and found to be clear. The fuel pickup screen was clear. The fuel pump was removed, manually actuated, and fuel was observed to be ejected out of the pump outlet. Oil was observed draining out of the engine; the oil pickup screen was removed, and found clear of debris. Both magnetos were removed, and spark was produced on all leads by rotating the magneto drive by hand. The propeller governor was removed, and the screen on the gasket was clear of debris.

MEDICAL & PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the pilot on September 23, 2014, by a forensic pathology consultant for Carbon County. The autopsy states the cause of death was blunt force injuries. The FAA's Civil Aerospace Medical Institute Forensic Toxicology Research Team performed forensic toxicology on specimens from the pilot with negative results for carbon monoxide, ethanol, or listed drugs. The test for cyanide was not performed.

An autopsy was performed on the student pilot on September 23, 2014, by a forensic pathology consultant for Carbon County. The autopsy states the cause of death was blunt force injuries. The FAA's Civil Aerospace Medical Institute Forensic Toxicology Research Team performed forensic toxicology on specimens from the student pilot with negative results for ethanol, positive results for diphenhydramine detected in liver tissue, and pseudoephedrine detected in liver tissue and blood. Tests for carbon monoxide and cyanide were not performed.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The FAA Airplane Flying Handbook, FAA-H-8083-3, chapter 10 states the following about night flying: "Night flying requires that pilots be aware of, and operate within, their abilities and limitations….Night flying is very different from day flying and demands more attention of the pilot. The most noticeable difference is the limited availability of outside visual references. Therefore, flight instruments should be used to a greater degree in controlling the airplane. This is particularly true on night takeoffs and climbs….. The procedure for night takeoffs is the same as for normal daytime takeoffs except that many of the runway visual cues are not available. Therefore, the flight instruments should be checked frequently during the takeoff to ensure the proper pitch attitude, heading, and airspeed are being attained. As the airspeed reaches the normal lift-off speed, the pitch attitude should be adjusted to that which will establish a normal climb. This should be accomplished by referring to both outside visual references, such as lights, and to the flight instruments."

According to the FAA Advisory Circular 60-4A, Pilot's Spatial Disorientation, "Surface references and the natural horizon may at times become obscured, although visibility may be above visual flight rule minimums. Lack of natural horizon or surface reference is common on overwater flights, at night, and especially at night in extremely sparsely populated areas, or in low visibility conditions. A sloping cloud formation, an obscured horizon, a dark scene spread with ground lights and stars, and certain geometric patterns of ground lights can provide inaccurate visual information for aligning the aircraft correctly with the actual horizon."




Federal investigators investigate the scene of a plane crash that killed Kenneth Schneider and Janet Kawakami of Casper on Saturday near the Saratoga airport. 


NTSB Identification: WPR14FA382 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 20, 2014 in Saratoga, WY
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28R-180, registration: N4618J
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 September 20, 2014, about 2315 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA28R-180, N4618J, impacted terrain about 1/2 mile south of the Shively Field Airport, Saratoga, Wyoming. The private pilot and student pil
ot were fatally injured, and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to a private individual, and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 91. Dark night conditions prevailed for the flight, and a visual flight rules flight plan had not been filed. The flight originated from Shively Field Airport about 2315.

The pilot had called the airplane owner at 2306 Saturday night stating that he was in Saratoga and that he was preflighting in the dark. The airplane wreckage was found by a local rancher about 0815 Sunday morning, September 21. First responders confirmed both occupants were fatalities. The initial point of impact was a shallow 7-foot-long ground scar that contained green/blue lens fragments. The ground scar was oriented in direct line of the main wreckage on a magnetic bearing of 240 degrees. The main wreckage was located 130 feet from the initial point of impact on the same bearing. The airplane was upright oriented on a bearing of 212 degrees magnetic. The cockpit had split open behind the engine firewall; the left wing was attached, and the right wing had separated at the wing root. The fuselage behind the cabin and tail section appeared undamaged. The propeller had separated from the engine at the crankshaft flange. The engine remained on the engine mount, but was displaced down and to the right.

Meteorological conditions recorded by the Automated Weather Observation System (AWOS) at Shively Field at 2335 was wind from 140 degrees at 5 knots, 10 statute miles visibility, clear sky, temperature 13 degrees centigrade, dew point 06 degrees centigrade, and altimeter setting of 30.36 inHg.

The moon set at 1705 MDT on September 20, resulting in no moon illumination at the time of the accident.



 Jan Kawakami drives a Sno-Cat on an ice climbing trip near Cody in 2013. 


 Kenny Schneider of Casper loads his 1978 Sno-Cat for an ice climbing trip in January 2013 near Cody. 


Two Casper residents died late Saturday evening after their 1968 single-engine airplane crashed one-fourth of a mile south of the Saratoga airport.  

Carbon County Sheriff Jerry Colson said his office received the call of the downed plane at approximately 8:30 a.m. Sunday.

The pilot, Kenneth Schneider, 52, and his passenger, Janet Kawakami, 54, were deceased the officials arrived at the scene.

Colson said both died on impact.

The two left Casper Saturday for a flight to Denver and were not reported missing or overdue before being discovered Sunday morning.

National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration investigators are on the scene to investigate the cause of the crash.

Helicopter noise complaint system to be launched by Federal Aviation Administration

After years of complaints and political battles by residents, the Federal Aviation Administration has announced plans to set up a complaint system to track helicopter noise in the Los Angeles area.

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, on Monday announced the FAA will allocate $250,000 to set up the system as an “important role in helping to stem disruptive helicopter noise plaguing residents across Los Angeles County.”

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said the year-long program, expected to start in the next several months, will set up comprehensive helicopter noise complaint system.

“Stakeholders, both community groups and helicopter operators, will have an opportunity to provide input on the design of the complaint box,” Gregor said. “The data will help us better understand what kinds of operations are raising noise concerns — what type of helicopter, what type of operation and what routes.”

Schiff and Sen. Dianne Feinstein pushed through a bill requiring the FAA to act within a year to find a voluntary way to reduce helicopter noise.

Schiff said it was the pressure from homeowner groups that contributed to forcing the FAA to act.

Richard Close, president of the Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association, said the complaints escalated during Carmageddon when the 405 Freeway was shut down.

“This will be a fantastic program because the helicopter pilots now say they are not creating the problem, that it is the media or police helicopters,” Close said. ‘This program will let us be able to track the helicopters live on where they are coming from and the time of day.

“Pilots have been unwilling to accept responsibility. What we hope this leads to is some regulations on flights. And, it is not just us in the Valley. This is a countywide problem.”

Schiff said the complaint system will provide a benchmark for officials in determining what kind of regulations are needed.

“I’m looking forward to working with the operators, homeowners and the FAA to make sure that we meet the urgent need for noise relief,” Schiff said.

Bob Anderson, president of the Los Angeles Area Helicopter Noise Coalition that included residents from across the county, said they have been looking for a countywide noise complaint system.

“The request we most often hear from residents impacted by helicopter noise it ‘where can I complain?’ The answer, sadly, was nowhere,” Anderson said. “This system will now give all residents countywide a place to lodge helicopter noise complaints and will provide irrefutable data identifying helicopter noise hot spots, so our organization can work with pilots and the FAA to stop the noise.”

- Source:    http://www.presstelegram.com

FAA To Create Public Complaint System For Helicopter Noise


LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — For the first time ever, federal regulators are expected to respond directly to public complaints about helicopter noise throughout Los Angeles County.

KNX 1070’s Ed Mertz reports the Federal Aviation Administration has announced the air traffic regulatory agency will fund a system that allows residents to file complaints over excessively loud helicopters.

In an email, FAA regional administrator Glen Martin said the agency has approved funding for the complaint system, which is expected to be operational by early 2015, The Daily News reported.

Details about the system, including estimated costs and functionality, were not immediately disclosed.

But longtime advocates for helicopter noise restriction such as Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO he was encouraged by the announcement.

“Right now, all the helicopter operators point fingers at each other, blaming one another, and this will help us get to the bottom of the truth as to who’s really causing the noise,” said Schiff.

The action comes after more than a decade of complaints from homeowners about disruptions caused by news choppers, paparazzi, tour operators and public safety agencies.

In June 2013, Schiff, along with Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, has introduced the Los Angeles Residential Helicopter Noise Relief Act (H.R. 456), which would require the FAA to set regulations relating to flight paths and altitudes for helicopter flights in LA County.

Story and Comments:  http://losangeles.cbslocal.com

Piper PA-28-140, N5948W: Accident occurred September 15, 2014 in Lone Pine, Inyo County, California

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Fresno, California 
Hartzell Propeller Inc; Piqua, Ohio

Aviation Accident Final Report -  National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Docket And Docket Items -  National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

http://registry.faa.gov/N5948W 

NTSB Identification: WPR14LA377
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, September 15, 2014 in Lone Pine, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/13/2017
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28, registration: N5948W
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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

The private pilot reported that, 2 hours into the personal cross-country flight, he observed a “flash of something” depart the front of the airplane and that the airplane instantly began violently shuddering and vibrating. The pilot immediately landed the airplane in a clearing, and he observed that almost half of one of the propeller blades was missing. 

A postaccident examination of the propeller assembly revealed that the propeller blade was fractured about 24 inches from the blade butt. Examination of the fracture surface revealed characteristics of fatigue failure that originated in a stress raiser located about 1.25 inches from the leading edge on the lower blade surface. A witness mark, in the form of a distinct score line, was present, indicating that the blade experienced a strike, which created a flaw of critical size at the fatigue origin site that ultimately propagated to failure. The investigation could not determine whether an object struck the blade or the blade struck an object or when the strike occurred.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The fatigue failure of a propeller blade due to a propeller strike by/of an unidentified object at an unknown time.

On September 15, 2014, about 1230 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA-28-150, N5948W, experienced severe vibrations and the pilot initiated a forced landing onto a meadow about 15 miles southwest of Lone Pine, California. The pilot was seriously injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a personal flight under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the flight which departed from Reid-Hillview Airport of Santa Clara County, San Jose, California at 1040. 

The pilot reported that two hours into the flight he observed a "flash of something" depart the front of the airplane; the airplane instantly began shuddering and vibrating violently. The pilot immediately reduced the throttle to idle and found a clear spot to land. With the engine at idle the pilot could see that about half of one of the propeller blades was missing. He also observed considerable movement of the front of the airplane. He descended the airplane rapidly to the clearing; as he approached the clearing, he observed large rocks that the airplane barely cleared. He held the nose of the airplane up as long as possible; the left landing gear touched the ground first and separated from the airplane followed by the right landing gear. As the nose wheel touched down it also collapsed and the airplane slid on its belly until it impacted a rock and came to a rest. 

The propeller assembly was taken to Hartzell Propeller Inc for examination with a Hartzell Propeller representative. The examination revealed that both propeller blades appeared to be in a high pitch position. One of the two blades was intact and exhibited extensive spanwise scoring, along with chordwise/rotational scoring near the blade tip. The other blade was fractured about 24 inches from the blade butt. The propeller hub was disassembled and the blades were removed. The pitch change knob on the fractured blade was bent, and the pitch change knob on the intact blade was fractured. 

The fracture surface of the fractured propeller blade was examined and it exhibited fatigue failure characteristics that originated in a stress raiser located about 1.25 inches from the leading edge on the lower blade surface. A witness mark, in the form of a distinct score line, was present at the fatigue origin site. 


The airplane's most recent maintenance was an annual/100 hour inspection that occurred on August 21, 2014 at a tach time of 2,096 hours, and a propeller total time in service of 2,049 hours. During the inspection, the leading edges of the propeller blade were filed. 

NTSB Identification: WPR14LA377
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, September 15, 2014 in Lone Pine, CA
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28, registration: N5948W
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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

On September 15, 2014, about 1115 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA-28-150, N5948W, experienced severe vibrations and the pilot initiated a forced landing onto a meadow about 15 miles southwest of Lone Pine, California. The pilot was seriously injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a personal flight under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and it is unknown if a flight plan was filed for the flight which departed from Reid-Hillview Airport of Santa Clara County, San Jose, California.

The pilot reported to first responders that while he was in cruise flight part of the propeller blade separated from the airplane. The airplane vibrated so violently that the only thing he could do was to land immediately.

The airplane has been recovered to a secure location for further examination.

Pilot Tim Cassell
~

SARATOGA, Calif. —   Tim Cassell of Saratoga crash landed his plane in a remote area of the Sierra Nevada and then he spent 18 hours in the cold before being rescued. His family calls it a miracle.

The 65-year-old said it was his faith and determination to get back to his family that helped him survive last Monday’s plane crash.

It’s a trip Cassell made every other week for six years from San Jose’s Reid-Hillview Airport to his family's resort in Death Valley.

“I did my normal preflight checks and got my preflight briefing,” said Cassell.

Last Monday, in perfect weather conditions, the pilot took off in his signal-engine Piper Cherokee plane. However, 20 minutes away from his destination and 13,000 feet high above the San Joaquin Valley, the plane's propeller broke in half.

“Instantly I saw this flash of something take off the front of the airplane,” said Cassell. “It started vibrating so violently. Metal around it started to buckle and shift and the plane felt like it was moving like this in the air.”

Descending at 2,000 feet per minute and 45 seconds to spare Cassell crash landed his plane in a remote canyon in the Sequoia National Park.

"As I'm fighting this aircraft, I was thinking please heavenly Father, let me survive this and I did,” said Cassell.

He crawled out of his plane with three broken ribs, two sprained ankles and fractures in his face after setting off his plane's emergency position indicating radio beacon.

“I was worried about her about my wife because I knew what was going on for the next several days,” said Cassell. “I knew it would be difficult for her.”

“I didn't care about the plane,” said Marsha Cassell who is Tim’s wife. “I didn't care about anything in the plane except him, just let us find him.”

He wrapped himself with blankets and an airplane cover to keep him warm throughout the night. The next morning, rescuers who picked up the emergency signal spotted his aircraft and spotted him waving a red blanket.

“I looked out to my right,” said Cassell. “I could see rangers coming and it was pretty nice.”

The former Eagle Scout attributed his faith, his training as a pilot and motivation to see his family again for his survival. Now he can't stop thanking his blessings.

“The first blessing was I walked out of the aircraft, hobbled out of the aircraft, and survived the first night and would have survived more if I had to,” said Cassell.

Cassell said a guardian angel was his co-pilot on that trip. He’s grateful for those who helped him from the Sequoia National Park rangers, the Civil Air Patrol, U.S. Air Force and the doctors at Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno.

The FAA and NTSB investigated the crash and the family is now working on removing the wreckage.


- Source:  http://www.ktvu.com