Monday, March 9, 2015

New Mexico Airlines president fired for unknown reasons • Former maintenance director takes his place

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —In the midst of a Federal Aviation Administration investigation, the president of New Mexico Airlines has been fired.

When the airline abruptly grounded planes for unknown maintenance issues in December, the FAA stepped in. Then-President Gabriel Kimbrell met with the administration regarding the investigation. 

The grounding led to widespread cancellations for weeks, along with many upset passengers.

Kimbrell was fired Monday for unknown reasons. Former Maintenance Director Darrin Lofton confirmed the firing. 

Lofton said the airline has hired a new director of operations and a new chief pilot. He said five of the airline's six aircraft are on the ground receiving new engine components.

The CEO of New Mexico Airlines is expected to meet with FAA officials at its flight standards district office in Albuquerque on Tuesday, Lofton said.

New Mexico Airlines is only flying to Carlsbad. The Los Alamos Airport cut ties with the airline.

Original article can be found at: http://www.koat.com

City of Bangor to pay $35,000 after jet slid off icy Bangor International Airport (KBGR) taxiway last year

BANGOR, Maine — The City Council approved Monday a settlement to pay $35,000 to the Federal Aviation Administration after a commercial airliner slid off an icy taxiway at Bangor International Airport in January 2014.

The Delta flight from LaGuardia International Airport slid off the airport taxiway, leaving its nose wheel in the grass, on Jan. 11, 2014, according to a news report.

No one was injured in the incident and passengers remained on the aircraft as it was towed to the gate. The aircraft was not damaged, according to city officials.

Airport Director Tony Caruso, who joined the airport in 1996, leaving briefly between 2001 to 2002, said he does not recall any similar incidents at the airport, known as excursions, when aircraft leave runways or taxiways.

Read more here:   https://bangordailynews.com

de Havilland DH82a Tiger Moth, ZK-BMY: Incident occurred at Tauranga Airport, New Zealand



UPDATE 3:49pm: The crashed plane was a Tiger Moth.

Tauranga Council communications manager Aimee Driscoll said the aircraft had "difficulty landing" just before 3pm and suffered minor damage.

There were no injuries to the two people onboard and no disruption to Air New Zealand services, she said.

The aircraft suffered a broken propeller and was now being removed.

The Civil Aviation Authority would determine whether an investigation needed to be carried out.

3.22pm: A light plane has made a crash landing at Tauranga Airport this afternoon.

A reporter at the scene said a small, yellow bi-plane had crashed on a grass runway.

The plane was on its wheels but its nose was in the ground. There were about three fire trucks on the runway alongside the plane.

Another plane appeared to be waiting on the runway.

It was not clear if the crashed plane's occupants were injured at this stage.

EARLIER: Reports are coming in that a plane has crashed at Tauranga Airport.

Firefighters are heading to the airport after reports a light plane has crashed on the runway.

Story and photos: http://www.nzherald.co.nz


Air Creation GTE 912, N7504K: Accident occurred March 09, 2015 in Spartanburg County, South Carolina

http://registry.faa.gov/N7504K


CHESNEE, S.C. —One man is dead after his motorized glider crashed on Monday night in Chesnee, the Spartanburg County coroner said. 

Kelly Lee Easler, a 50-year-old from Inman, was pronounced dead just before 8 p.m., after his glider crashed into trees and came to rest 80 feet up, Coroner Rusty Clevenger said. The crash happened at the intersection of Blalock Knoll Way and Fosters Grove rd.

Clevenger said that Easler tried to leap to a nearby limb and fell to the ground, and that the only other passenger on board was rescued by firemen.

The coroner's office is conducting an investigation, but said it doesn't appear the glider crashed because of mechanical issues.

http://www.wyff4.com

The pilot of an ultralight airplane died after he crashed into a tree near Mayo Monday evening.

Firefighters went to Fosters Grove Road and Sandy Ford Road around 6:50 p.m. after the aircraft crashed into a tree 80 feet in the air.

Kelly Lee Easler, 50, of Woodsong Drive in Inman, tried to leap to a nearby limb after the crash, but he fell to the ground, said Spartanburg County Coroner Rusty Clevenger in a statement Monday night.

Another person was found stuck in the tree with the wreckage and was rescued by “brave and daring firefighters,” Clevenger said.

The tree was near a small airstrip, Cherokee Springs Fire Department Lt. John Alley said.

Firefighters conducted a technical rescue to retrieve the person stuck in the tree. Easler and the other person were taken to Spartanburg Medical Center by ambulance.

Easler was pronounced dead at the hospital, Clevenger said.
http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?NNumbertxt=7504K
After the initial call, Spartanburg’s advanced rescue team was dispatched along with fire departments from Cherokee Springs, Mountain View, Cowpens, Whitney and Boiling Springs fire departments.

Alley stressed his gratitude toward other departments who either helped in the rescue or were placed on standby in the event that additional manpower was needed. “It was flawless,” he said. “It’s considered a technical rescue. There were a lot of things that could have gone wrong that didn’t go wrong.”

Clevenger said his office will continue to identify and interview witnesses to determine more about the crash.

He said there does not appear to be any mechanical malfunctions at this stage in the investigation.

Source:   http://www.goupstate.com    

Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports


SPARTANBURG, SC (FOX Carolina) - Spartanburg County Coroner Rusty Clevenger confirms one person died after an ultralight aircraft crash on Monday evening.

The incident was reported near Chesnee Highway at Fosters Grove Road just before 7 p.m. 

Clevenger said two people were on board the motorized glider when it collided with trees and came to rest 80 feet off the ground. He said one of the people inside reportedly tried to leap to a nearby limb when he fell to the ground. Clevenger said the man died at the hospital. 

Clevenger identified him as 50-year-old Kelly Lee Easler of Inman. 

The second person was rescued by firefighters around 9 p.m. That person's condition is unknown at this time.

Story,  video  and photos: http://www.live5news.com





Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser, N7748H: Incident occurred March 09, 2015 in Hopewell, Ontario County, New York

HOPEWELL — A man who flipped his airplane while landing the craft in a snow-covered field in Hopewell walked away from the crash unharmed.

The pilot was alone in the aircraft when the incident unfolded shortly after 3 p.m. Monday. 

Sgt. Dave Cirencione, of the Ontario County Sheriff's Office, detailed the incident shortly after the crash, noting that the pilot took off from the Canandaigua Airport and targeted a field at 3719 Routes 5 and 20 for a landing spot. 

 The field, which has a snowmobile path tracing through it, is covered with snow, which at some points was as much as two feet deep. 

"He was traveling from south to north on the ground when, with the combination of the soft snow and the wind, flipped the plane," Cirencione said while standing alongside Routes 5 and 20 as the plane rested upside-down in the field more than 100 yards away.

The snow had both caused the plane, identified as a Piper, to flip and also provided a level of cushioning when it came crashing upside-down.

Cirencione said that the pilot chose to land in the field because he knows people who live nearby and was intending to visit them. 

The owner of the field was not the person he planned to visit. 

Tim Wunder, the property owner, was working out in his barn when he noticed the small aircraft circling above his house a couple times. He didn't think much of it and went about his business in the barn. 

"Then I heard a thud, and I just thought it was ice coming off the roof," Wunder said. "I came out and he was laying there upside down."

Wunder said that he ran from the barn and out into the field to check on the welfare of the pilot. As he approached he found that the pilot had already exited the aircraft.

"He was shell-shocked, but he was alright," Wunder said. 

Wunder said he was baffled as to why the pilot made the decision to land the aircraft in his field, noting that he didn't have permission to do so. He added that it was a questionable decision considering the snow's depth. 

When he saw the plane flipped over in the field, he said he assumed the pilot was attempting to initiate an emergency landing. 

Cirencione said that members of the Federal Aviation Administration would further investigate the incident. 

Story and photos: http://www.brightonpittsfordpost.com

DOUGLAS M. TURNBULL: http://registry.faa.gov/N7748H 





Deputies say a small plane crashed in the area of Freshour Road near Routes 5 and 20 in the Town of Hopewell in Ontario County.

We're told the plane left Canandaigua airport around 3:10 p.m. on Monday. It landed in a field off Routes 5 and 20 and got caught in the soft snow and flipped. Pilot Douglas Turnbull was able to get out of the plane and was luckily not hurt.

We're told the plane got caught in soft snow while landing and flipped.

Sergeant Dave Cirencione says, "Probably 24 hours ago this would have been fine. But we've had this sudden warm turn and the snow has been so hard packed and frozen over two months now that probably he wasn't expecting it to be as soft as it is. The sun has been out all day and it's really started to soften up and he probably didn't anticipate that."

We're told Turnbull has had a pilot's license since 2009. He was visiting friends and intended to land in the field.

Story, video and photo:  http://www.whec.com







53 year-old Douglas Turnbull escaped injury this afternoon when his 1946 Piper, PA12 aircraft overturned while he was attempting to land the plane off Route 5 in the Town of Hopewell.   

Ontario County Sheriff's Deputies say the Bloomfield man was alone in the vintage two-seater plane when he flew out of Canandaigua Airport about 3:10 PM.  After a short flight, Turnbull put the plane down in a snow-covered field on the south side of Route 5, east of Freshour Road in the Town of Hopewell, at approximately 3:33PM.

It was a routine landing, but as he taxied across the field from south to north, the plane struck some soft snow causing it to flip upside down.  

Turnbull, who was wearing his seatbelt and shoulder harness, quickly extricated himself from the overturned plane and walked away with no apparent injuries.  

He was checked at the scene by personnel from Canandaigua Ambulance, but refused to be transported to the hospital.  He remained, instead, at the scene of the crash to inspect the plane for any possible damage.

On questioning Turnbull, Sheriff's Deputies determined that the field he landed in was exactly where he intended to land and it was not an emergency situation until the plane hit the snow hazard. 

The FAA, meantime, has been notified and will investigate the incident.  The Hopewell Fire Department also responded and assisted at the scene.

Story and audio: http://www.fingerlakesdailynews.com


Airport leadership gathers at Tulsa conference to discuss changing industry

Federal headwinds on funding and the negative revenue impact of ride-sharing programs such as Uber are two things that officials with commercial airports worry about nonstop.

Leaders from airports in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico and Central America are meeting in downtown Tulsa this week for the Changing Airport Marketplace conference.

The event, which runs through Wednesday at the Hyatt Regency Tulsa hotel, is a joint effort with the Oklahoma Airport Operators Association; the South Central Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives; and the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission.

During the conference’s first session focusing on legislative and industry issues, airport officials discussed the importance of the U.S. Congress reauthorizing the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA’s current legal authorization expires in September.

Airport leaders said that an important part of the reauthorization process is the potential increase of the cap on the passenger facility charge, the fee that airports can charge travelers when they buy an airline ticket.

The fee used for airport infrastructure improvements is currently capped at $4.50. The airports want to raise it as high as $8.

“We have tried for the last 15 years to get an increase in the passenger facility charge,” Todd Hauptli, president and CEO of the American Association of Airport Executives, said. “We’re right on the passenger facility charge, but right now we don’t have the votes” in Congress.

Air carriers are strongly opposed to the fee increase.

“The passenger facility charge is a food fight with the airlines,” Hauptli said.

Airlines have been arguing that passengers won’t fly with another fee change, and that point of view is totally inaccurate, Randy Berg, chair of the American Association of Airport Executives, added.

Hauptli spoke about the importance of the national association continuing to innovate.

An example of recent entrepreneurship Hauptli said is the association’s January launch of the Airport Innovation Accelerator, an organization meant to help the association connect airports with companies creating solutions to industry issues.

In another recent development, airports are being hurt by significant revenue leakage because they haven’t yet figured out a way to collect from ride-sharing programs like Uber and Lyft that are becoming popular with airport travelers.

“Currently at airports, especially large airports, it’s kind of the Wild West out there in terms of ride-share companies,” Hauptli said.

San Francisco International Airport has begun to require paid permits from ride-sharing programs. The association hopes to replicate that collection process with other airports in the future, Hauptli said.

Story and photo:  http://www.tulsaworld.com

Boeing Boosts 777’s Appeal, Eyes New Midsize Jet • Company aims to boost fuel efficiency, accommodate extra seats

The Wall Street Journal
By Jon Ostrower

Updated March 9, 2015 5:07 p.m. ET


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.— Boeing Co. is improving its existing 777 jetliner with better fuel efficiency and more seats in a bid to boost sales before a revamped version arrives early next decade, a senior executive said Monday.

The package of changes aims to boost the existing jet’s efficiency by 5% per passenger, include a 2% reduction in the amount of fuel needed per flight overall, and can accommodate 14 extra seats for aircraft delivered from the third quarter of next year.

Randy Tinseth, Boeing’s vice president of marketing, outlined five focus areas for the 777. These include incremental changes to the jet’s General Electric Co. engines, a 1,200-pound weight reduction and minor modifications to the aerodynamics of the aircraft, which is the backbone of the company commercial profitability.

Boeing early next decade will transition production of the existing 777 to the heavily-upgraded 777X after 2020 when the upgraded jet begins deliveries. The revamped jet adds new engines and larger carbon-fiber composite wings. Production of the 777X begins in 2017 on a dedicated assembly line, while production of the current generation aircraft continues.

Boeing needs to sell between 40 and 60 existing 777s a year to maintain output at 100 each year. Boeing said last week it had sold half of the jets it will build in 2017, but signaled the company was open to a possible change of production rate if demand doesn’t materialize as expected.

In the longer term, Mr. Tinseth told a conference hosted by the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading that customer feedback is pushing Boeing to evaluate a new product that fits between today’s single-aisle 737 and larger long-range 787. He said airlines and lessors are interested in a jetliner that can fly about 4,800 nautical miles and is larger than its 180 to 240-seat 757, which the company discontinued a decade ago.

Story and comments:  http://www.wsj.com

Airbus Considering New Engines for A380 Superjumbo Jet • Emirates Airline said it would order as many as 200 A380s if Airbus made a double-digit improvement in fuel efficiency

The Wall Street Journal
By Jon Ostrower

March 9, 2015 3:31 p.m. ET


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.— Airbus Group NV ’s chief jetliner salesman on Monday said the company is considering new engines for its double-deck A380 superjumbo jet, but won’t make the change solely based on the demands of a single buyer.

Dubai-based Emirates Airline is the largest customer for the A380 superjumbo jet, and has been clamoring for a “double digit” improvement in fuel efficiency. Emirates has said it would order as many as 200 A380s if Airbus were to add engines that achieved that goal.

John Leahy, Airbus’s chief operating officer for customers, said the European plane maker is currently evaluating the business case for a major upgrade for the world’s largest jetliner.

“We aren’t going to obviously build it for just one airline,” said Mr. Leahy, implying that the promised order wouldn’t create a sufficient business case.

“We’re in the process of trying to decide if you invest money to do a [new engine option] airplane,” said Mr. Leahy.

Mr. Leahy said the market for the 525-seat A380 is “slowly developing in the future.”

Original article can be found at:  http://www.wsj.com

Cirrus SR22, N949WB: Accident occurred March 09, 2015 at Hurricane Municipal Airport - General Dick Stout Field (1L8), Hurricane, Utah

Regis#: N949WB
Aircraft Make: CIRRUS
Aircraft Model: SR22
Event Type: Accident
Highest Injury: None
Damage: Substantial
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Salt Lake City FSDO-07

AIRCRAFT ON LANDING WENT OFF THE RUNWAY AND SUSTAINED SUBSTANTIAL DAMAGE, HURRICANE, UT



HURRICANE – Operations were temporarily halted at the Hurricane Municipal Airport Monday afternoon after a plane crash-landed.

At approximately 1:40 p.m., emergency responders were called out to the Hurricane Municipal Airport on a report of a plane crash, Hurricane City Police Sgt. Brandon Buell said. A man flying a Cirrus SR22 single-engine aircraft was attempting to land at the airport when the incident occurred.

“The information we have so far is that the plane came down to land, and as the plane landed, a gust of wind hit the plane … It pushed the plane off the runway, which caught the tire in the dirt,” Buell said. “The pilot continued to just try to keep the nose up, ride it out through the dirt. At one point, the wing caught and spun the plane around, and it ended up where it’s at.”

The plane came to a stop south of the runway with minimal damage, Buell said. The pilot was uninjured.

The Federal Aviation Administration was notified of the incident, and airport operations were temporarily suspended while the scene was attended to.

Hurricane City Police and Hurricane Valley Fire and Ambulance responded to the scene.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by the authorities and may not contain the full scope of findings.

Story and video: http://www.stgeorgeutah.com




HURRICANE – A male pilot walked away uninjured after crash-landing his single-engine plane at the airport at General Dick Stout Field Monday afternoon.

The plane came in from the north with the wind at its back at about 1:40 p.m., Hurricane Police Sgt. Brandon Buell said. The pilot reportedly lost control during the landing, with the nose touching down and the plane spinning off the runway.

The Cirrus SR22 came to rest on its belly, just off the southern end of the runway.

The pilot was traveling alone and no other people were involved in the crash, Buell said.

The airport was temporarily closed while emergency crews responded to the scene, but Buell said he expected it to reopen later in the day.

The Federal Aviation Administration is conducting an investigation into the crash.

Story and photo: http://www.thespectrum.com

Piper PA-24-250 Comanche, N6514P: Fatal accident occurred March 09, 2015 near Page Field Airport (KFMY), Fort Myers,Florida

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

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

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
























































AIRCRAFT: 1959 Piper PA-24-250 Comanche N6514P, s/n 24-1636 

At the time of the loss, the aircraft total time was 8158.43. 

The last annual inspection was performed on 09/02/2014 at 8109.57 TT
                                                              
ENGINE:  Lycoming 0-540-A1B5, s/n 1006240, with a Total Time Since New of 2526.38

The last Annual Inspection was performed on 09/02/2014 at TT 2477.52, and TSMOH 1209.52

PROPELLER:  Hartzell HC-A2VK-1, s/n J973, with TT 8113.83 and TSMOH of 77

The last Annual Inspection was on 09/02/2014, at PTT 8064.97, PTSMO 44.6

EQUIPMENT:  
Audio Panel, KA134 TSO
DME, KN64
(2) NAV/COM & GS, KX 155 TSO
ADF 141 TSO
GPS, Garmin 430  50 IFR
Transponder TSO
           
DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT:  Pilot reported an "engine out" condition on approach to Page Field Airport, Fort Myers (KFMY) and landed N6514P in a parking lot impacting a storage POD and a pickup truck. 

DESCRIPTION OF DAMAGES:  Damage includes but may not be limited to the following:   

The engine and instrument panel forward are separated from the fuselage. 

There is damage to both wings and throughout the airframe.

The horizontal stabilizer and all control surfaces are damaged.

 LOCATION OF AIRCRAFT:  Charlotte County Airport, Punta Gorda, Florida - in a fully enclosed hangar.  The aircraft was originally retrieved to the Lee County Airport and subsequently further disassembled and relocated to Charlotte County Airport.

REMARKS: Aircraft disassembled for transport.

Read more here:  http://www.avclaims.com/N6514P.html

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA149
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, March 09, 2015 in Fort Myers, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/14/2015
Aircraft: PIPER PA-24-250, registration: N6514P
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 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 pilot reported that, about 10 miles from the destination airport, he switched the left and right fuel tanks from the auxiliary position to the main tank position. On final approach for landing and when the airplane was at an altitude of about 500 ft, the engine stopped producing power. The propeller continued to rotate, but the engine did not respond to throttle inputs. The pilot stated that he then switched the fuel selectors from the main tank position back to the auxiliary tank position and turned on the electric fuel boost pumps, but the engine did not regain power. He added that, each time he moved the fuel selectors, he visually confirmed their position. The pilot performed a forced landing to a parking lot, during which the airframe aft of the engine compartment was fractured and the fuselage was substantially damaged. There was no odor of fuel or evidence of fuel spillage at the accident scene; however, the fuel caps were removed, and large quantities of fuel were found in each wing tank. Examination of the cockpit revealed that both the left and right tank fuel selectors were in the “off” position and that the fuel selector position decal had been displaced upward and over each handle by impact forces, which indicates that the fuel selectors were in the “off” position at impact and not moved subsequently. Continuity of the fuel system was confirmed from all four fuel tanks, through the fuel selectors, to the fuel supply line forward of the firewall. The engine was test run, and it started immediately, accelerated smoothly, and ran without interruption at all power settings. 

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's inadvertent placement of both fuel selectors to the "off" position, which resulted in fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power.

On March 9, 2015, about 1410 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-24-250, N6514P, was substantially damaged during collision with a vehicle and storage container after a total loss of engine power on final approach to Page Field Airport (FMY), Fort Meyers, Florida. The private pilot was seriously injured and the passenger was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight, which was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The flight departed St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) about 1335 and was destined for FMY.

In a telephone interview, the pilot stated the airplane's fuel tanks contained about 85 gallons of fuel prior to departure. He said that preflight inspection, engine start, engine run-up, taxi and takeoff were as expected and that "all systems were normal." The pilot took off and climbed the airplane to 3,500 feet. About 10 miles from FMY, the pilot contacted air traffic control (ATC), and he was instructed to report again at 4 miles from the airport. The pilot moved the fuel selectors from the auxiliary to main tank positions. At 4 miles from FMY, the pilot contacted ATC and configured the airplane for landing.

On final approach for landing, at an altitude about 500 feet, the engine stopped producing power. The propeller continued to rotate, but the engine did not respond to throttle inputs. The pilot switched the fuel selectors back to the auxiliary tank position and turned on the electric fuel boost pumps, but never regained engine power. The pilot said that each time he moved the fuel selectors, he visually confirmed their position. The pilot performed a forced landing to a parking lot which fractured the airframe aft of the engine compartment and substantially damaged the fuselage.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed no odor of fuel, or evidence of fuel spillage at the scene; however, removal of the fuel caps revealed large quantities of fuel in each wing. The engine controls were all "full forward" and both fuel selectors were in the "Off:" position. The fuel selector position decal was displaced upward, and over each handle by impact forces.

The wreckage was moved to Buckingham Field, Lehigh Acres, Florida, and was secured in a hanger for further examination.

The airplane was examined by FAA Inspectors on March 12, 2015. Flight control continuity was established, and the engine cowlings were opened. Approximately 1 ounce of fuel was drained from the carburetor which was clear and absent of water or debris. The engine appeared undamaged, and the examination was suspended. The engine was then removed from the airplane, and shipped to the manufacturer's facility for a detailed examination.

On April 23, 2015, the airplane was defueled, and continuity of the fuel system was confirmed from all four fuel tanks, through the fuel selectors, to the fuel supply line forward of the firewall.

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. He reported 410 total hours of flight experience, of which "more than" 10 hours were in the accident airplane make and model. His most recent FAA third class medical certificate was issued on February 24, 2015.

The airplane was manufactured in 1959 and was equipped with a Lycoming O-540 series, 250 hp, reciprocating engine. It's most recent annual inspection was completed September 2, 2014, at 8,109 total aircraft hours.

The airplane was equipped with individual fuel selectors for the fuel tanks positioned in the left and right wings, respectively. The fuel selectors had three positions; Main, Tip, and Off. The left selector was rotated counterclockwise from the 12-o'clock (Main) position thru the 9-o'clock (Tip) position to the 6-o'clock (Off) position. The right fuel selector was rotated clockwise from the 12-o'clock, thru the 3-o'clock, to the 6-o'clock in order to match the same selector settings. The selector valves then fed a single fuel supply line forward of the firewall to the engine.

On May 12, 2015, the engine was examined at the manufacturer's facility in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The engine appeared undamaged, and was placed in a test cell where it started immediately, accelerated smoothly, and ran without interruption through a complete engine test run scenario at all power settings.

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA149 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, March 09, 2015 in Fort Myers, FL
Aircraft: PIPER PA-24-250, registration: N6514P
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious.

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

On March 9, 2015, about 1410 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-24-250, N6514P, was substantially damaged during collision with a vehicle and storage container after a total loss of engine power on final approach to Page Field Airport (FMY), Fort Meyers, Florida. The private pilot was seriously injured and the passenger was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight, which was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The flight departed St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) about 1335 and was destined for FMY.

In a telephone interview, the pilot stated the airplane's fuel tanks contained about 85 gallons of fuel prior to departure. He said that preflight inspection, engine start, engine run-up, taxi and takeoff were as expected and that "all systems were normal." The pilot took off and climbed the airplane to 3,500 feet. About 10 miles from FMY, the pilot contacted air traffic control (ATC), and he was instructed to report again at 4 miles from the airport. The pilot moved the fuel selectors from the auxiliary to main tank positions. At 4 miles from FMY, the pilot contacted ATC and configured the airplane for landing.

On final approach for landing, at an altitude about 500 feet, the engine stopped producing power. The propeller continued to rotate, but the engine did not respond to throttle inputs. The pilot switched the fuel selectors back to the auxiliary tank position and turned on the electric fuel boost pumps, but never regained engine power. The pilot said that each time he moved the fuel selectors, he visually confirmed their position. The pilot performed a forced landing to a parking lot which resulted in substantial damage to the engine compartment and fuselage.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed no odor of fuel, or evidence of fuel spillage at the scene; however, removal of the fuel caps revealed large quantities of fuel in each wing. The engine controls were all "full forward" and both fuel selectors were in the "Off:" position. The wreckage was moved from the accident site for a detailed examination at a later date.

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. He reported 450 total hours of flight experience, of which "more than" 10 hours were in the accident airplane make and model. His most recent FAA third class medical certificate was issued on February 24, 2015.

The airplane was manufactured in 1959 and was equipped with a Lycoming O-540 series, 250 hp, reciprocating engine. The airplane's maintenance history could not be immediately determined.


RALPH A. LENNEN: http://registry.faa.gov/N6514P


An 85-year-old Estero woman and her 59-year-old son from St. Petersburg were aboard the Piper plane that crash-landed in a Fort Myers parking lot Monday.

Donna Piehl and Gregory Piehl were pulled from the crumpled plane he was piloting that crashed on its approach to Page Field general aviation airport. Both were listed in serious condition Tuesday, according to a Lee Memorial Health System spokeswoman.

Lauren Piehl, Gregory Piehl's daughter, declined to comment when reached by phone.

A public records search lists Gregory Piehl as president of Impact Precision Products in Clearwater, a manufacturer of motion control systems. Calls to the business Tuesday were not answered.

Meryl Rorer, a neighbor of Donna Piehl in a small Estero community off Sandy Lane, was shocked when told her friend and her friend's son had been hurt in the crash.

"I know he's a pilot. I hadn't heard about them being in the crash. I didn't see the news," she said. "Her son must be devastated. Greg comes down now and again to help her. She has medical problems. It just breaks my heart, I worry about her."

Rorer said Donna Piehl is a kind and friendly woman. "She's the sweetest woman and a loving person."

She said Donna Piehl can be normally be seen along the roadway walking her dog. "She loves her dog so much," she said. "She has a fenced-in backyard, but she makes herself walk the dog."

Rorer said she and her husband have known Donna Piehl since they moved to the community in 2007, the year Donna Piehl's husband, Donald, died.

And, despite Donna Piehl's health problems, Rorer said the Estero woman has a sharp mind and a great spirit. "She's always smiling and happy," she said.

Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating why the four-seat 1959 Comanche landed just before noon Monday atop two vehicles and a storage container behind the White Sands Treatment Center. The plane was about a mile short of the Page Field runway.

According to data from the Federal Aviation Administration, there have been 29 plane crashes at Page Field, including Monday's, since records began being kept in 1982, around the time Page Field became a general aviation airport. There were three fatalities among those crashes.

Two of the deaths occurred during a 2002 crash involving a Raytheon 58 and the other in 1984 when a Consolidated Aeronautics Lake LA-4 crashed at the field.

Layla Cecil of Cape Coral posted on The News-Press web site that she was at a gas station nearby when the plane crashed.

"I actually saw this ... I was pumping gas at the 7/11 on Colonial right before 41," she wrote. "I saw the plane out of the corner of my eye and turned to see a low-flying plane. It looked like it was moving slowly and kind of wobbly. I was worried that it would hit these tall (pine?) trees that were right in its path. It rose up and amazingly didn't hit them, but then it ducked down below them rapidly."

Cecil said she waited for a crash and didn't hear one. "... so I didn't think anything of it — I knew it was weird, but I was hoping they'd made it to Page."

Cecil said she then heard the sounds of a helicopter and saw police responding.

"I was working to exit off of 41 from Colonial and turned back and saw the wreckage. I was worried they'd hit the side building of the facility there. I'm glad that wasn't the case. Still was a horrible thing to be privy to, though," she wrote.

http://www.news-press.com