Saturday, April 11, 2015

Proposed change targets airport improvement fund: Murfreesboro Municipal (KMBT), Tennessee



MURFREESBORO –   Construction began last week on Murfreesboro Municipal Airport's runway extension, but projects like this may be in jeopardy if a proposed change in the amount businesses are required to pay for improvements becomes state law, airport officials say.

The nearly $5.1 million project is most funded through the state's aviation tax fund, but a proposed change to the fund could cut it in half, explained Chad Gerke, director of the Murfreesboro airport.

The Haslam administration wants to cap the amount a single person or business will pay into the Tennessee Equity Fund, which is funded by aviation fuel taxes. The Equity Fund is distributed in the form of grants for improvements at large and small airports across the state, like those at Murfreesboro Municipal Airport.

"It will basically take money airports use for maintenance and improvements and cut it in half," Gerke said.

The city's total grant includes more than $4.4 million from the Tennessee Equity Fund, $328,000 from the federal government and $295,090 from airport debt and interest payments covered by airport revenues from fuel sales and leases.

The legislation would reduce the size of the funding pool that general aviation airports can pull from for maintenance projects and upgrades. It is currently making its way through the committee process in Nashville with nods from the Transportation and Ways & Means committees in both the state House and Senate.

Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Jim Tracy, R-Shelbyville, said the state was stuck between a rock and a hard place with how the fund is funded.

On one side, he sees the value of local airports to economic development, but, on the other hand, one of the state's largest employers was threatening to fill up its plane's gas tanks in other states.

"It put us in a tough spot," Tracy said.

According to an Associated Press report, the cap will benefit Memphis-based FedEx that on average pays annually up to three-quarters of the $48 million fund.

According to testimony in committees this week, no other taxpayer exceeds the proposed cap. Southwest Airlines comes closest at $6 million per year.

Cash in the fund results from a 4.5-cent-per-gallon tax on aviation fuel collected by the state each year.

Of the surrounding states, North Carolina's fund comes closest at $20 million with a $0.053 effective tax rate and $2.5 million cap. Indiana has the smallest fund with a $1.2 million estimated annual revenue with a $0.10 a gallon rate and exemptions for airlines and FedEx, according to data from Tracy's office.

Under Haslam's proposal, FedEx's aviation fuel tax liability would be capped at $10.5 million — down from the $32 million the company paid last year. The cap would begin July 1 and be phased in over four years.

Smyrna/Rutherford County Airport Authority Executive Director John Black said he thinks the cap will have a detrimental effects on the state's network of airports.

"While we value our existing business, we also must balance the maintenance and growth of all of our airports through the mechanism (Tennessee Equity Fund) that has worked so well since 1988," Black said.

"Airports are much more than runways and taxiways, they are the front door and economic engines of our communities," he continued.

Tracy said he spent time talking to airports from across the state and was pleased when his committee amended the bill to create a task force to oversee the changes to the fund.

While airport administrators say there's no plan to replace the money, Tracy said he has hope the task force will find a way to keep fuel tax money flowing to general aviation airports.

"The Equity Fund has worked very well for us and the taskforce needs to develop a long-term plan to continue it," Tracy said, adding general aviation airports are important to economic development.

Both Black and Gerke said they fear that economic development opportunities may be damaged if airports have less funding for upkeep.

Gerke said getting the runway project is important, but the Murfreesboro airport terminal, which dates back to the 1950s, needs an overhaul. But that may not happen anytime soon if the Equity Fund is reduced.

"We may never have a jet based here, but we do have corporate executive who come here," he said.

He said now the airport will have to reassess its future plans.

Source:   http://www.dnj.com

Nonprofit group pushes for growth, welfare of Taunton Municipal Airport (KTAN), Massachusetts

Mike Dupont flies his restored 1946 Piper Cub at Taunton Municipal Airport.



TAUNTON — Taunton Municipal Airport is getting a boost in interest with the recent formation of a nonprofit group of pilots and other supporters of the city-owned, airplane facility.

The Taunton Pilots Association will promote the use and growth of the city-owned TMA, also known as King Field, which got its start in 1919 when Henry King established his own airport in East Taunton.

“We’ve been talking about it for a close to a year,” said TPA president and pilot Melinda Paine-Dupont.

“We wanted to provide a unified voice,” she added. “There are a lot of pilots and a lot of interest in the airport.”

Paine-Dupont said a somewhat-contentious public meeting in December at Taunton City Council chambers that focused on developing a new master plan was not the sole catalyst to establish the TPA — which she said has been around for about a month and has both a dedicated website and Facebook page.

But she said that night’s central issue of finding a way to bring into compliance the airport’s turf-and-gravel runway — the shorter of TMA’s two runways — was an important factor to get the TPA up and running.
“It got us motivated,” she said.

Paine-Dupont said the TPA now has 71 members, including eight pilots from Brockton who share a single plane at the Taunton airport and belong to the Brockton Flying Club, which got its start at King Field in the 1930s.

She said the association is open to pilots and nonpilots alike. Paine-Dupont also said the group is currently in the process of gaining 501 (c)(3) nonprofit status with the state.

More than 100 owners of planes lease hangar space and close to another 20 pilots pay to have their planes tied down outside, according to airport manager Daniel Raposa.

Paine-Dupont also said the TPA in no way will compete or oppose the interest of the TMA’s seven-member commission — which will hold a public meeting Wednesday night at City Hall, to provide residents with an update on what will be the first new master plan in more than a dozen years.

A viable master plan is vital in terms of a small, municipal airport qualifying for capital-improvement grants from both the Federal Aviation Administration and the state’s MassDOT Aeronautics Division.

Wednesday’s meeting will include a presentation by James Miklas, director of aviation planning for Woburn-based Airport Solutions Group LLC, which has been retained by the airport commission to form a new Master Plan.

Paine-Dupont said she foresees more involvement in the TPA and is optimistic for the advocacy it will provide to enable the airport to keep up with the times and become more of an aeronautic player in the southeast region.

 “You can’t complain if you don’t voice your opinions,” she said.

Original article can be found here:   http://www.tauntongazette.com


Taunton Pilots Association president and pilot Melinda Paine-Dupont is seated in the 1946 Piper Cub.

Kansas Department of Transportation unveils aviation information site • Tells people if their building plans require Federal Aviation Administration approval

People looking to build near an airport in Kansas have a new tool to tell them if they need approval from the Federal Aviation Administration.

Tiffany Brown, acting director of aviation for the Kansas Department of Transportation, said KDOT unveiled a new aviation information “portal” on Friday. It mostly will be useful to consultants and aviation planners, though the general public also can use it, she said.

The site uses mapping software so people can locate their property and put in the type of structure they want to build and how high it will be, Brown said. If the structure is more than 200 feet tall or located within five miles of an airport, the person building it will have to file with the FAA to make sure it won’t interfere with air traffic, she said.

A message will come up almost instantly in red if the proposed structure requires a filing and in green if it doesn’t, Brown said.

The portal also allows people to look up the pavement conditions of Kansas airports and their economic impacts on the city and county level, Brown said. It also has other three-dimensional mapping features useful for people who work with airports and need to know about specific space regulations, she said.

To try out the portal, visit ksaviationportal.ksdot.org.

Source:   http://cjonline.com

Suit over noise level in Longmont, Boulder County skies goes to trial • Some say those with complaints overly sensitive



A year and a half-long legal dispute between a Longmont skydiving company and anti-skydiving noise advocates will go to trial Monday in Boulder County District Court.

Kimberly Gibbs of Gunbarrel, Gibbs's organization Citizens for Quiet Skies and six other individual plaintiffs sued Mile Hi Skydiving over the noise Mile Hi's planes make when flying over Boulder County homes.

Mile Hi flies its planes out of Longmont's Vance Brand Municipal Airport, particularly a purple DeHavilland Twin Otter. The planes leave the airport, reach altitude in a flight box that reaches out over unincorporated Boulder County, drop the skydivers and return the airport.

Gibbs and others with the Citizens for Quiet Skies group have been speaking for years at meetings of the Longmont City Council meetings and the Airport Advisory Board, saying that the Twin Otter is particularly noisy as it ascends and descends. In the lawsuit, they argue that even though Mile Hi is ultimately governed by the Federal Aviation Administration, the court should still be able to stop its operation from being a nuisance.

"In short, the choices that Mile-Hi makes when conducting its skydiving operations. . .are choices within the discretion of Mile Hi and within the discretion of this Court to limit," the attorney for the plaintiffs wrote in the trial brief filed March 31.

"In these discretionary matters, Mile Hi must operate in a reasonable manner and may not interfere with Plaintiffs' quiet enjoyment of their properties."

Others in the city say that the people who complain about the noise are being overly sensitive about the planes and the skydivers.

Lawyers for Mile Hi, meanwhile, argue in the suit that the skydiving company is following all FAA regulations and the plaintiffs' requests would impose on the federal government's ability to regulate air traffic.

"If the Plaintiffs wish to change the noise emissions, flight patterns, and/or curfews of the (sic) Mile Hi, their sole remedy is to convince the Airport or the City of Longmont to conduct a (noise study) and make recommendations to the FAA," wrote Mile Hi's attorney in the their brief, also filed March 31.

Former Airport Manager Tim Barth commissioned a preliminary noise study by local firm Terracon before he resigned his position in January. The study found that average plane noise in several areas subject to complaints was not significantly higher than background noise. The Terracon study cost the city $2,797 while City Attorney Eugene Mei wrote in an email to the City Council that a more extensive study the FAA requires would cost roughly $300,000. The more expensive study has not yet been commissioned.

While the plaintiffs in the case originally claimed that Mile Hi was negligent, trespassing and a nuisance, those claims were winnowed down by three summary judgements issued by the court. Citizens for Quiet Skies originally asked the court to award them money for alleged reduction in home values, money for loss of enjoyment of their homes, damages for emotional stress and money for court fees.

The plaintiffs additionally asked the court to grant an injunction against Mile Hi so that the company would have to limit its hours of operation in the future and changing flight patterns.

In summary judgements, the court dismissed most of Citizens for Quiet Skies' claims, leaving the organization only able to pursue the injunction asking Mile Hi to change its ways. The individual plaintiffs in the case are still seeking compensation for what they say has been a devaluation in their homes' value due to the noise from Mile Hi.

Original article can be found here:  http://www.timescall.com

Cessna T337G Super Skymaster, N7CY: Incident occurred April 11, 2015 at Brookneal/Campbell County Airport (0V4), Brookneal, Virginia

RAY O. KENYON: http://registry.faa.gov/N7CY

The pilot of a Cessna airplane was transported to Lynchburg General Hospital for minor injuries after an emergency landing in southern Campbell County Saturday afternoon, officials said.

Virginia State Trooper T.W. Fridley responded to the incident just before 2:30 p.m. at the Brookneal/Campbell County Airport. 

The airplane was flying from Florida to New York when its passenger-side door became ajar, according to a news release.

The pilot was unable to close it while in flight and had to attempt a landing at the airport.

The news release said brisk winds forced a rough landing; the right tire broke off and caused the aircraft to land in the grass about five feet off the runway.

Ray O. Kenyon, 71, of Sherburne, New York, who piloted the aircraft, was taken to the hospital, the release said. His wife and dog also were on board but had no injuries.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board have been notified of the incident.



CAMPBELL CO., Va. -   The pilot, Ray O. Kenyon, 71, of Sherburne, New York, was able to walk away with only a busted lip after crashing his small plane near the Brookneal-Campbell County Airport Saturday afternoon.


Investigators say the door of the plane came open at 9,000 feet, causing the pilot to make an emergency landing. He was taken to the hospital with a busted lip.

The pilot’s wife and dog were in the plane at the time of the incident. They did not sustain any injuries.

Hanna stumps for new, long-term federal aviation bill to aid Griffiss



Rep. Richard L. Hanna, R-22, Barneveld, spoke at Griffiss International Airport Thursday about the need for Congress to pass a new, long-term federal aviation bill that would aid upstate and, more specifically, build on successes at the Oneida County airfield.

Current funding and authorization for the Federal Aviation Administration expires in September.

Hanna, who is a pilot and member of the House Subcommittee on Aviation, wants Congress to quickly approve a new bill extending the FAA and updating the nation’s aviation policies.

The last FAA reauthorization was enacted after more than four years of stop-gap measures.

The congressman called for policies to better account for new technologies like unmanned aircraft systems, better known as drones, and satellite-based GPS systems.  

This bill could also provide avenues for local airports like Griffiss to receive federal funding for upgrades and repairs through the Airport Improvement Program. In 2014, Griffiss received $6.3 million from the program.

“Aviation is critical to America’s economy, but it’s also a real bright spot here in upstate New York, if we take the right steps now,” Hanna said. “That means providing long-term, stable funding for Griffiss and other airports, allowing NUAIR to do more and better work in Rome, and ensuring that the United States has the safest and most efficient aviation system in the world.”

NUAIR is using Griffiss as test site for drones as the FAA develops guidelines for the introduction of commercial drones in the U.S. airspace.

State, county and local officials joined with Hanna at the new terminal building.

Hanna added, “This is a bipartisan issue and I look forward to getting a new FAA bill signed into law in the coming months.”

Millions of federal dollars have paid for improvements at Griffiss since the county airport was moved to the former Air Force base in 2007 from Whitestown. The airport is in the midst of a federally funded multiyear program to rehabilitate and reconfigure taxiways. Griffiss has no scheduled passenger service.

Original article can be found here:   http://romesentinel.com


Quad City Challenger II, N30796: Fatal accident occurred April 11, 2015 near Rosenbaum Field Airport (3WI9), Chippewa County, Wisconsin




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


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


Flight Standards District Office; Milwaukee, Wisconsin 


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

http://registry.faa.gov/N30796


14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 11, 2015 in Chippewa Falls, WI
Aircraft: QUAD CITY CHALLENGER - II, registration: N30796
Injuries: 1 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 April 11, 2015, at 1132 central daylight time, an experimental Quad City Challenger II airplane, formerly registered as N30796, impacted terrain while on visual pattern downwind at the Rosenbaum Field Airport (3WI9), near Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. The airplane was substantially damaged and the pilot sustained fatal injuries. The airplane, with an expired registry, was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight, which departed without a flight plan at an unknown time.


Several witnesses observed the airplane making a turn near the mid-field downwind position at 3WI9. The airplane subsequently began a steep dive, which continued until ground impact. The airplane caught fire following ground impact.


PERSONNEL INFORMATION


The pilot, age 77, held a recreational pilot certificate with airplane single engine land rating and a repairman experimental aircraft builder certificate. The pilot's logbook indicated he had flown 416 total hours as of May 5, 2006, with nearly all of his flight time accomplished in the accident airplane. Recent logbooks were not available for the investigation. According to his wife, the pilot had flown a few times over the past 12 months.


The pilot's most recent Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) medical certification exam, dated May 10, 2004, did not identify any abnormal findings and the examiner issued a third-class medical certificate with the following limitation: must wear lenses for distant - possess glasses for near vision. This medical certificate expired for all classes on May 31, 2006.


AIRCRAFT INFORMATION


The airplane was a two-seat tandem, high-wing, pusher configuration. FAA records indicated the pilot manufactured the airplane and received a special airworthiness certificate on May 17, 2002. The airplane was equipped with a Rotax 503 engine and a Tennessee, Inc. wooden propeller. Maintenance logbooks were not available to the investigation.


WEATHER INFORMATION


At 1156, the weather observation station at Chippewa Valley Regional Airport (EAU), Eau Claire, Wisconsin, located about 9 miles southwest of the accident site, reported the following conditions: wind 250 degrees at 11 knots, with gusts to 17 knots, 10 miles visibility, clear skies, temperature 15 degrees C, dew point 1 degree C, altimeter setting 30.14 inches of mercury.


WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION


The accident site was located in a level, open farm field located about ½ mile to the east of the runway. The airplane impacted the field with a nose low attitude, which created a 2 ft deep crater, and came to rest about 40 ft from the initial impact point. A post-crash fire consumed much of the fuselage and tail.


FAA examination of the airplane confirmed flight control continuity to all flight controls and engine crankshaft continuity was confirmed via rotation of the propeller. The wooden propeller was fragmented down to its hub. Examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.


MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION


A review of primary care and cardiology records from January 2012 until April 2015 revealed the pilot had a history of coronary artery disease treated with multi-vessel bypass surgery, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, and hypothyroidism. He also had diet controlled type 2 diabetes with peripheral neuropathy resulting in difficulty with balance and walking, as well as major depressive disorder with mild symptoms controlled with fluoxetine.


The pilot's latest cardiologist evaluation on October 6, 2014 documented that the pilot was stable from a cardiac standpoint and remained asymptomatic. The cardiologist documented that the pilot was not following a proper cardiac diet. The records did not document a recent exercise stress test or electrocardiogram.


During his last primary care appointment, which occurred two days prior to the accident, the pilot's height and weight measured 70 inches and 251 pounds. The primary care physician documented that the pilot had no chest pain or discomfort and no shortness of breath and his high blood pressure was "well controlled".


The pilot's medications included atenolol and lisinopril (medications to control blood pressure), levothyroxine (a thyroid replacement medication), fluoxetine (an antidepressant medication), atorvastatin (a cholesterol lowering medicine), tamsulosin (a medication to treat enlarged prostate), naproxen (medication to control pain and swelling), and aspirin (medication used to control pain, inflammation and fever also used to decrease the risk of recurrent heart attacks).


According to his wife, the pilot underwent heart bypass surgery in September 2008. Two months prior to the accident, the pilot had been sick with upper respiratory issues and a sinus infection and he had taken a while to recover. She stated the pilot was just starting to feel well and energetic the week of the accident.


On April 14, 2015, an autopsy was performed on the pilot by the Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. The cause of death was blunt force injuries. The autopsy identified an enlarged heart, severe multi-vessel coronary artery disease (greater than 80 percent occlusion of all vessels) with coronary artery bypass grafts and complete occlusion of two bypass vessels, evidence of an old heart attack with scarring of the ventricular septum and active inflammation of heart muscle of the anterolateral wall of the left ventricle.


The FAA's Civil Aeromedical Institute in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma performed toxicology tests on the pilot. Toxicology did not identify carbon monoxide or ethanol in cavity blood. Testing detected atenolol in liver and cavity blood, atorvastatin in liver, fluoxetine in cavity blood and liver, and its metabolite norfluoxetine in cavity blood and liver.






NTSB Identification: CEN15LA195

14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation 
Accident occurred Saturday, April 11, 2015 in Chippewa Falls, WI
Aircraft: QUAD CITY CHALLENGER - II, registration: N30796
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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


On April 11, 2015, at 1132 central standard time, an experimental Quad City Challenger II airplane, formerly registered as N30796, impacted terrain while on visual pattern downwind at the Rosenbaum Field Airport (3WI9), near Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. The pilot was fatally injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane, with an expired registry, was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight, which departed without a flight plan at an unknown time.


Several witnesses observed the airplane making a turn near the mid-field downwind position at 3WI9. The airplane subsequently began a steep dive, which continued until ground impact. The airplane caught fire following ground impact.



At 1156, the weather observation station at the Chippewa Valley Regional Airport (EAU), Eau Claire, Wisconsin, located about 9 miles southwest of the accident site, reported the following conditions: wind 250 degrees at 11 knots, with gusts to 17 knots, 10 miles visibility, clear skies, temperature 15 degrees C, dew point 1 degree C, altimeter setting 30.14 inches of mercury.

TOWN OF EAGLE POINT, Wis. (WEAU) -- Richard J. Felix, age 77 of rural Cornell, is dead after his small plane crashed in Chippewa County. It happened Saturday morning in a field south of the 14000 block of 105th avenue in the Town of Eagle Point.


The Chippewa County Sheriff's Office says the pilot took off, made a turn, and the nose went down. Deputies say the plane wasn't more than 1,000 feet from the runway.


Around 11:32 Saturday morning, deputies responded to a report of a small plane that had crashed, and burst into flames, in the field just south of the airport


By the time we arrived on scene, crews had everything picked up.


Their investigation revealed that it was a ultralight aircraft.


They say the Chippewa County Coroner did pronounce the only passenger deceased at the scene, and the name of the deceased will be released at a later date.


We did talk with some pilots who were there Saturday afternoon. They said it was a perfect day to fly, and don't think weather conditions could have caused the crash.


The FAA is assisting the Chippewa County Sheriff's Department in this investigation.


TOWN OF EAGLE POINT, Wis. (CHIPPEWA CO. SHERIFF'S OFFICE PRESS RELEASE) -- On Saturday April 11th, 2015, at approximately 11:32am the Chippewa County 911 center received a report of a plane that had crashed, and burst into flames, in a field south of the 14000 block of 105th Avenue in the Town of Eagle Point.


Eagle Point Fire did respond and extinguish the fire. The investigation revealed that it was a single passenger ultralight aircraft.


Chippewa County Coroner did pronounce the only passenger deceased at the scene. No photographs are available at this time. The name of the deceased will be released at a later date.


TOWN OF EAGLE POINT, Wis. (WEAU) -- The Chippewa County Sheriff's Office has confirmed to WEAU that one person was killed in a plane crash in the Town of Eagle Point.


The crash happened around 11:30am Saturday, in a field south of

14000 block of 105th Avenue.

Deputies say the single passenger ultralight aircraft crashed and burst into flames. The Eagle Point Fire Department responded and put out the fire.


The Chippewa County Coroner pronounced the only passenger on the plane dead at the scene.


EAGLE POINT -- Irene Przybylski stepped outside just as a small airplane crashed into an empty field in the Town of Eagle Point late Saturday morning.


It was around 11:30 a.m. when she left the building where she and her husband are selling their huge collection of toys.


"All I saw was a great big ball of fire," Przybylski said of the incident.


She didn't immediately know what had happened. Soon other witnesses informed her that a small plane had been making a loop in the sky before diving toward the earth.


The crash took the life of the pilot, whose name is being withheld by authorities pending notification of relatives.


Other witnesses who rushed to the scene, only a few hundred yards south of the Przybylski's building on 105th Avenue, claimed to have found a body in the mud close to the wreckage.


According to the Chippewa County Sheriff's Office:


The county joint dispatch center received a call at 11:32 a.m. reporting that a plane had crashed in a field south of the 14000 block of 105th Avenue in Eagle Point.


The Eagle Point Volunteer Fire Department arrived on the scene and extinguished the fire.


The aircraft was determined to be a single-passenger ultralight aircraft.


The Chippewa County coroner pronounced the only occupant of the plane dead at the scene.

Cessna 172: Incident occurred April 11, 2015 on Lake Champlain


MILTON — Two men who were practicing landing and taking off from the ice on Lake Champlain escaped injury Saturday afternoon when their small aircraft began to sink through the surface between Milton and South Hero, a Vermont aeronautics official said. 

 Milton Fire Chief Don Turner, who responded to the scene, said he was amazed and thankful the men walked away from the precarious and crumbling sheet of ice without injuries.

The plane, a four-seat Cessna 172 based at Burlington International Airport, landed about three-quarters of a mile offshore from the Department of Fish and Wildlife's Van Everest fishing access in Milton.

"Apparently, they were unable to depart the ice after they landed," said Guy Rouelle, aeronautics administrator with Vermont Aviation, a division of the Agency of Transportation.

The pilot and passenger had to traverse melting ice, at times trudging through 3 to 4 feet of water, to reach solid ground, where rescue crews met them, Turner said. A strong wind was whipping off the frozen lake from west to east, cooling the air considerably even in the warm spring sun.

"They're very wet, very cold, but they appear to be fine," Turner said.

"They are very, very lucky guys today," Turner added. "That ice is very, very dangerous. It is something I dread as a fire chief to put people on to go rescue somebody, so I was very gratified when I got here that they were already nearing shore."

Turner said he has seen nothing like Saturday's incident during his 32 years with the Milton Fire Department.

The incident at first was reported to emergency authorities as a plane crash at about 2:45 p.m., initially in the vicinity of Sand Bar State Park off U.S. 2 between Milton and South Hero. Subsequent dispatches redirected rescue crews to the Van Everest access along Everest Road in Milton.

Respnding police, fire and rescue units, their lights flashing, filled the access's parking lot several minutes after the incident. The pilot and passenger were inside an ambulance, which later departed for the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington.

The men were unavailable for comment.

The plane was barely visible through heat waves off shore but could be seen clearly through long camera lenses and binoculars. And the plane, with 30 gallons of fuel aboard, was sinking, Fire Chief Turner said.

Vermont Emergency Management, the plane's owner and the insurance company were making plans Saturday afternoon how to remove the aircraft from the weakening ice. Turner said that the plane clearly was sinking.

Lake Champlain's ice thins considerably this time of year, and the state warned all anglers last month to remove fishing shanties before the ice breaks up.

It's unclear whether the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the incident.

"If there are significant injuries or substantial damage to the aircraft, we would consider that an accident and would investigate," said Peter Knudson, a spokesman with the transportation safety board. "It could be that the aircraft is just wet. It may take time to determine that."

Source:    http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com










Cessna T210M, N732YQ: Fatal accident occurred April 10, 2015 in Challis, Idaho

 JOHN H. SHORT: http://registry.faa.gov/N732YQ

NTSB Identification: WPR15FA143
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, April 10, 2015 in Challis, ID
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/25/2016
Aircraft: CESSNA T210M, registration: N732YQ
Injuries: 4 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The private pilot and three passengers had landed at a remote airstrip earlier in the morning to visit the pilot’s ranch. The published guidance for the airstrip noted that the runway was 2,500 ft long and 75 ft wide. After being on the ground about 2 hours 30 minutes, the pilot indicated to ranch personnel that he wanted to depart before the wind increased. Shortly thereafter, the airplane departed with an estimated 4- to 5-kt tailwind. During the initial climb, the nose landing gear and left tire impacted a tree (which was about 50 ft tall) located about 100 ft from the fence that made the perimeter of the runway. The left tire then likely impacted the left horizontal stabilizer and elevator, rendering the airplane uncontrollable. The airplane then descended into a creek and came to rest inverted; a postimpact fire ensued. There was no evidence of any mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

The performance data were calculated using the estimated airplane and environmental conditions at the time of the accident. The distance required to clear a 50-ft obstacle for a takeoff with a 5-kt tailwind from a dry grass runway similar to the accident runway was about 2,675 ft. The actual distance from the area where the pilot began the takeoff roll to the first impacted tree was about 2,625 ft, which indicates that the airplane did not have the sufficient performance capability to climb over the tree.

The pilot frequently flew into the airstrip and was familiar with the terrain and departure procedures, and GPS data revealed that the pilot departed from the airstrip on nine prior occasions in the past year. Comparison of these flights to the accident flight revealed that the pilot’s flightpath was normally to the right of the accident flightpath. The pilot likely would have not been able to see the tree due to the airplane’s nose-high pitch configuration during the takeoff.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's attempt to depart in conditions that resulted in the airplane having insufficient performance capability, which resulted in a collision with a tree.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On April 10, 2015 about 1225 mountain daylight time, a Cessna Centurion T210M, N732YQ, collided with trees shortly after departing from Upper Loon Creek USFS Airport located in the Salmon-Challis National Forest near Challis, Idaho. The pilot, who was the registered owner, was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The private pilot and three passengers sustained fatal injuries; the airplane sustained substantial damage. The personal cross-country flight was originating from Upper Loon Creek with a planned destination of Driggs-Reed Memorial Airport, Driggs, Idaho. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot had a solar energy system installed on his residence in the Driggs area and wanted the same solar company, Creative Energies, to assess if it was possible to do a similar installation at his private residence at Diamond D Ranch, where he was a partial owner. The pilot had been staying in Driggs for several days and had planned to take a few of the Creative Energies employees to the ranch to perform an evaluation of the solar installation possibilities. Earlier in the week, he notified the ranch manager that he intended on flying into Upper Loon Creek, located about two miles downstream from the ranch on a northeasterly heading. During the winter, the ranch is only practically accessible by flying into the airport.

The pilot and three passengers departed from Driggs with the airplane loaded with full fuel in the wing tanks. After completing the approximate 170 nautical mile (nm) cross-country flight, the airplane landed at Upper Loon Creek. The solar employees performed their assessment and they all left the ranch at which time the pilot told the ranch personnel that he wanted to depart before the wind picked up. There were no witnesses to the accident, nor did anyone at the ranch hear the airplane depart.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 70, held a private pilot certificate, with ratings for single and multiengine land, and instrument airplane. His third-class medical certificate was issued on January 08, 2015 and contained the limitation that he must wear lenses for distant vision and possess glasses for near vision. He held a type certificate for a Lear Jet.

The pilot's personal flight records were not recovered. On his last application for a medical certificate, the pilot reported a total flight time of 9,051 hours, of which 42 hours were accumulated in the last 6 months. The pilot's spouse stated that the pilot frequently flew into Upper Loon Creek. This was his first trip to the ranch since fall 2014. She recalled that the pilot would normally depart in the direction away from the ranch (northeast), and would make a straight out departure until reaching a ridge where he would begin to circle in an effort to gain altitude.

AIRPLANE INFORMATION

The Cessna T210M airplane, serial number 21061884, was manufactured in 1977. The airplane logbooks were not provided to the National Transportation Safety Board. The last annual inspection record was found at the facility that performed the maintenance. It indicated that the last inspection was completed on December 08, 2014, at a total airframe and engine tachometer time of 3,669.4 hours. The time since last major overhaul was 1,341.4 hours.

The last maintenance performed on the airplane was recorded as being performed in January 2015 and consisted of the left brake and oxygen hose being serviced.

Fuel

The airplane was last fueled at Driggs on April 04, 2015 and topped off with the addition of 50.4 gallons of fuel. According to the line manager at the fueling facility, the airplane was not flown between the fueling and the flight to Upper Loon Creek. The airplane was hangared at their facilities in Driggs, so they likely would have known if the airplane was flown prior. The JPI unit showed that at the time of the accident, 14 gallons of fuel had been used which is presumably since that fueling, equating to 70 gallons of fuel on board at the time of takeoff on the accident flight.

Weight and Balance

Weight and balance computations were made for the accident takeoff and based on the airplane's empty weight, total moment, and center of gravity that were obtained from the maintenance records. The detailed computations are appended to this report.

The performance data was calculated using information from the Pilot's Operating Handbook for a 1977 Cessna Model T210M, Section 5 Performance and from flight test information provided by Textron Aviation. For the purpose of the calculations, investigators utilized an estimated gross weight at the time of the accident to be 3,551 pounds, which was derived by the assumption of 70 gallons of fuel on board and a total weight of pilot and passenger of 745 pounds (derived from the Custer County Records); baggage weight of 50 pounds (estimated from witnesses and the coroner); the airplane's empty weight was 2,322 pounds. Using the temperature of 10 degrees Celsius (see Meteorological Section of this report) and a gross weight of 3,500 pounds (51 pounds under the estimated weight), at the accident altitude, the performance charts indicated the following distances required to clear a 50 ft obstacle for a takeoff on a dry grass runway:
No wind: 2,231 ft
2.5 kt. tailwind: 2,454 ft
5.0 kt. tailwind: 2,677 ft
7.5 kt. tailwind: 2,900 ft
10 kt. tailwind: 3,123 ft

Assuming the airplane started its takeoff roll at the beginning of the runway, with a 5 kt tailwind as reported by the ranch manager, the calculated distance to clear a 50 ft obstacle would be 2,677 ft. The actual distance from the area where the pilot began his takeoff roll (derived from the GPS data) to the first tree that was impacted (which is approximately 50 ft in height), was about 2,625 ft.

In the takeoff configuration, with the nose-high pitch, it is possible that the pilot's windscreen view of the terrain would be limited; the airplane was not equipped with a v-brace on the windscreen.

AIRPORT INFORMATION

The Airport/Facility Directory (AFD), indicated that Upper Loon Creek USFS Airport runway 04 was about 2,500 ft long and 75 ft wide. The runway surface was composed of turf/dirt, and noted to be in fair condition. The airport elevation was 5,500 ft msl, and the AFD noted the obstructions for the runway to be a 70-ft tree 45 ft from the runway and 70 ft left of the centerline. In the remarks section of the AFD was a note "recommended for experienced mountain pilots only with trees and higher terrain on both ends."

Local pilots stated that almost everybody will land on runway 22 and depart runway 04 due to the terrain. While on-site, investigators noted that the runway was in fact oriented on a bearing of about 051 degrees; following the accident, the FAA reflected the runway to be designated as 05/23.

In June 1995, an accident (SEA95LA117) occurred at Upper Loon Creek where the pilot and passenger received minor injuries. According to the pilot involved in the accident, he was attempting to take off from runway 04 with an approximate 10 kt tailwind. When reaching the end of the runway, he encountered a severe downdraft, and descended into the trees near the end of the runway.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

Just prior to the accident, the pilot mentioned to a ranch caretaker that he wanted to depart before the wind picked up. The caretaker estimated that the wind was out of the south at about 4-5 kts at the ranch, and it picked up later in the afternoon; the temperature was about 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Information from the Bureau of Land Management remote weather stations was provided. According to weather information for Little Creek, Custer County, Idaho, located about 11 nautical miles northwest of the accident site, about 25 minutes after the accident the temperature was 13 degrees Celsius; wind was from 352 degrees at 2 kts gusting to 5 kts.

According to weather information for Bonanza, Custer County, Idaho, located about 14 nm southeast of the accident site, about 25 minutes after to the accident the temperature was 10 degrees Celsius; wind was from 180 degrees at 7 kts gusting to 15 kts.

Local pilots familiar with the wind conditions and patterns at Upper Loon Creek stated that there can be downdrafts at the drainage confluences next to the runway. They also noted that the weather changes very fast in the springtime.

Utilizing a temperature of 10 degrees Celsius and the airport elevation of 5,500 feet msl, the density altitude at the time of the accident was computed to be approximately 6,046 feet msl.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The accident site was located partially submerged in the shallow creek that approximately paralleled the runway; the fuselage along with a majority of the wing skin was consumed by fire. Situated on the relatively level terrain, the airplane came to rest inverted, and the debris path was oriented on a 080-degree magnetic heading. The main wreckage, which consisted of a majority of the airframe and engine, was located about 600 feet from the fence located at the end of runway 04 on a heading of 060 degrees. The runway and first identified impact marks were located on a raised plateau about 40 feet higher than the river.

The first identified impact point consisted of broken tree limbs located about 170 feet northeast from the center of the fence and about 430 feet south west of the main wreckage. The first tree impacted was identified by it having a junction where two separate branches forked upward, both of which had fresh cuts around the 50-foot level. The tree was located in line with the far right side of the fence, which was about 100 feet east of an extended runway centerline. There were numerous broken branches along the debris field to the main wreckage. The nose wheel was located about 100 feet from the first tree, and remained on the plateau. The left landing gear tire was located the farthest from the debris field, and found on the southwest side of the bank (opposite of the airstrip). The outboard half of the left horizontal stabilizer was found in the river around the same length down the debris field as the nose landing gear.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Custer County Coroner's Office completed an autopsy on the pilot. The trachea showed no evidence of soot deposition. The FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) performed toxicological screenings on the pilot. According to CAMI's report (#201500076001), the toxicological findings were positive for Atorvastatin and Diltiazem. The results were negative for ethanol.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

Investigators from the Safety Board, Federal Aviation Administration, and Textron Aviation examined the wreckage on April 14, 2015, at the facilities of SP Aircraft, Boise, Idaho. The engine was later sent to Continental Motors Analytical Department, located in Mobile, Alabama.

Airframe

The main wreckage came to rest partially submerged in a creek, and had been subjected to severe thermal damage. The main wreckage consisted of the wings, empennage, engine, and the mostly ashen remains of the fuselage. The cabin was completely consumed by fire.

The left wing remained affixed to the fuselage with the aileron and wing flap control surfaces still attached at their respective hinges. The wing tip, located about 35 ft upstream of the wreckage in the bush bordering the creek, was not attached, and had burned; pieces of the red navigation lens were found near the wingtip. The right wing remained affixed to the fuselage with the aileron and wing flap control surfaces still attached at their respective hinges. The inboard 3 ft of the wing had sustained thermal damage, and the remaining outboard area was not burned, consistent with it being partially submerged in the creek. The outboard half of the leading edge displayed crush deformation with the skin folded into itself giving an accordioned appearance with three distinct divots noted. The flap control surfaces were found in the retracted (flush) position. The actuator jackscrew was examined by measuring the exposed threads, which totaled 2.625 in. A representative from Textron Aviation stated that the position of the jackscrew was consistent to the flaps being extended between 5 and 10 degrees. Flap cable continuity was established from the control surface to the cockpit area. The aileron cable continuity was established from the control surfaces to the control yoke assembly.

The rudder control surface remained affixed to the vertical fin structure. There were several areas of crush damage and punctures on the leading edge of the vertical fin. The rudder cables were attached to the rudder horn, and continuity was established to the aft baggage compartment through a series of pulleys and runs through lightning holes; the ends of the cables were thermally deteriorated. Investigators established continuity of the elevator control cables to the aft baggage compartment through a series of pulleys and runs through lightning holes; the ends of the cables were thermally deteriorated. The left inboard half of the horizontal stabilizer and elevator remained attached to the empennage. The outboard section was found about 450 ft upstream in the river. The outboard section of the horizontal stabilizer was deformed aft about 18 in from the leading edge creating an accordion appearance, with the aluminum skin folded over on itself and the boot surface flat. This u-shaped wrinkle was about 10 inches in diameter. There were several black rub markings and splatter found on the elevator control surface positioned aft of the divot.

Fuel system continuity could not be established due to the amount of impact and thermal damage that the airplane had sustained. No fuel was present in either wing tank. The fuel selector valve was found in the "LEFT" position. Trace amounts of fuel were recovered from the fuel manifold and the gascolator.

The nose landing gear (NLG) doors were located about 30 ft upstream from the main wreckage. The doors were fragmented, and sustained severe crush damage. The NLG wheel was separated at the strut, and found near the initial impact. A 2-inch portion of the rim's flange was fragmented on both sides of the wheel, each fracture being located in the same relative position on the left and right sides of the wheel rim. The right main landing gear was found in the wreckage. The gear was locked, and the tire/wheel assembly was attached and burned. The left main landing gear was found in the wreckage. The gear was unlocked, and the tire/wheel assembly was separated (the tire was found the furthest away from the debris field). According to the manufacture, Goodyear Aviation Tires, the left main landing gear, (p/n 606C86-6) had an outside diameter between 17.5 and 16.8 inches depending on the inflation. The section width was between 6.3 and 5.9 in.

Engine

The Continental Motors TSIO-520-R, serial number 294045-R, sustained impact damage. Investigators removed the upper spark plugs of all cylinders. According to the Champion Aviation Check-A-Plug AV-27 Chart, the spark plug signatures corresponded to normal engine operation although numerous plugs were coated with oil. A subsequent borescope examination revealed that the combustion chambers remained mechanically undamaged, and there was no evidence of foreign object ingestion (pre-impact) or detonation. The valves were intact and undamaged. There was no evidence of valve to piston face contact observed.

Prior to the test run the Nos. 6 cylinder and several induction system components and exhaust risers were replaced due to impact-related damage. The engine was placed on a test bench at the manufacturer. The engine experienced a normal start on the first attempt without hesitation or stumbling in observed rpm. The engine rpm was advanced in steps for 5 minute intervals for warm-up in preparation for full power operation. The engine throttle was then advanced to full open position, and held for 5 minutes to stabilize. The engine throttle was rapidly advanced from idle to full throttle five times where it performed normally. Throughout the test phase, the engine accelerated normally without any hesitation, stumbling, or interruption in power, and demonstrated the ability to produce rated horsepower. The turbo controller was disassembled, and no anomalies were noted. The waste gate actuator was inspected, and determined to be at or near full extension, consistent with the waste gate being closed.

The propeller remained attached to the engine crankshaft. All three blade tips remained attached. One blade was twisted to an opposite direction of rotation in the hub. The second blade was slight bowed on the outboard area. The third blade was bent forward at mid-span, and bent aft the outboard foot. The blades did not display any evidence of chordwise scratching or leading edge dents or dings.

There was no evidence of mechanical malfunction or failure with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation. Detailed examination reports with accompanying pictures are contained in the public docket for this accident.

Global Positioning System (GPS) Data

Investigators found a Garmin GPSMAP 496, battery-powered portable GPS receiver within the wreckage. The unit included a built-in Jeppesen database, and was capable of receiving XM satellite radio for flight information. The unit stores date, route-of-flight, and flight-time information for up to 50 flights; all recorded data is stored in non-volatile memory. A detailed report with accompanying graphs and pictures is contained in the public docket for this accident.

Recorded data plots were recovered from the unit, and contained 50 different flights over the duration from June 2014 to the accident date. Within those flights, there were nine prior takeoffs from runway 04 at Upper Loon Creek that occurred between June and September 2014.

The morning flight originated from Driggs-Reed Memorial Airport about 0825, and landed at Upper Loon Creek about 0945. The last recorded flight, the accident flight, occurred between the span of 1223:03 and 1225:02, about 2 minutes. The groundspeed began to increase from 6 kts to 32 kts at 1224:38 on a heading of 050 degrees. Thereafter, the remaining 5 hits of the flight track occurred over 24 seconds. During this time, the speed gradually increased to 80 kts, and the airplane gained about 50 ft, reaching 5,567 on the penultimate hit, and descended 96 ft on the last hit.

A comparison was made between the accident takeoff and nine prior Upper Loon Creek takeoffs from runway 04. Lateral and perpendicular distances were measured between the nine prior flight paths, and compared to the accident antepenultimate and penultimate hits, at 1224:56 and 1225:00, respectively. Comparing all nine flight paths to the antepenultimate hit revealed that they were all to the right of this accident flight point with the farthest being 111 ft; the average distance was 56 ft to the right. Relative to the penultimate hit, five flights were to the right of this accident flight point, with the farthest being 126 ft right of this accident flight point; the average was 21 ft to the right.

Engine Data Monitoring Device

The airplane was equipped with a JP Instrument, Inc., EDM 700 engine data management system. The non-volatile memory was removed and downloaded following the accident. The data extracted contained 22 different flights between September 2014 through April 14, 2015.

The last flight recorded displayed engine operation between April 10 at 2117:10 to April 14 at 1848:56. Based on the display time that showed during the download, the clock was about 8 hours and 54 minutes ahead of the local time. The data was recorded in 12 second intervals.

On the accident flight, at 0000:24 elapsed time, the cylinder head temperature (CHT) values began to increase. Between 0001:36 and 0001:48 elapsed time, the exhaust gas temperature (EGT) values, rpm, and fuel flow all began to increase. After 0002:12 elapsed time, all values contain no variation, consistent with invalid data. The last reliable data point shows an rpm of 2,700 and symmetry between cylinders' CHT and EGTs.


NTSB Identification: WPR15FA143 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, April 10, 2015 in Challis, ID
Aircraft: CESSNA T210M, registration: N732YQ
Injuries: 4 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 April 10, 2015 about 1315 mountain daylight time, a Cessna Centurion T210M, N732YQ, collided with trees shortly after departing from Upper Loon Creek USFS Airport located in the Salmon-Challis National Forest near Challis, Idaho. The pilot, who was the registered owner, was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The private pilot and three passengers sustained fatal injuries; the airplane sustained substantial damage. The personal cross-country flight was originating from Upper Loon Creek with a planned destination of Driggs-Reed Memorial Airport, Driggs, Idaho. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot had a solar energy system installed on his residence in the Driggs area and wanted the same solar company, Creative Energies, to assess if it was possible to do a similar installation at his private residenc
e at Diamond D Ranch, where he was a partial owner. The pilot had been staying in Driggs for several days and had planned to take a few of the Creative Energies employees to the ranch to perform an evaluation of the solar installation possibilities. Earlier in the week, he notified the ranch manager that he intended on flying into Upper Loon Creek, located about two miles downstream from the ranch on a northeasterly heading. During the winter, the ranch is only practically accessible by flying into the airport.

The pilot and three passengers departed from Driggs with the airplane loaded with full fuel in the wing tanks. After completing the approximate 170 nautical mile (nm) cross-country flight, the airplane landed at Upper Loon Creek. The solar employees performed their assessment and they all left the ranch about 1300 at which time the pilot told the ranch personnel that he wanted to depart before the wind picked up (the wind at the ranch was about 5 mph). There were no witnesses to the accident, nor did anyone at the ranch hear the airplane depart.

The accident site was located partially submerged in the shallow creek; the fuselage along with a majority of the wing skin was consumed by fire. Situated on the relatively level terrain, the airplane came to rest inverted and the debris path was oriented on a 080-degree magnetic heading. The main wreckage, which consisted of a majority of the airframe and engine, was located about 600 feet from the fence located at the end of runway 040 on a heading of 060 degrees. The runway and first identified impact marks were located on a raised plateau about 40 feet higher than the river.

The first identified impact point consisted of broken tree limbs located about 170 feet northeast from the center of the fence and about 430 feet south west of the main wreckage. The first tree impacted was identified by it having a junction where two separate branches forked upward, both of which had fresh cuts around the 50 foot level. The tree was located in line with the far right side of the fence, which was about 100 feet east of an extended runway centerline. There were numerous broken branches along the debris field to the main wreckage. The nose wheel was located about 100 feet from the first tree and remained on the plateau. The outboard half of the left horizontal stabilizer was found in the river around the same length down the debris field as the nose landing gear. The leading edge was deformed aft about 1 foot creating an accordion appearance, with the aluminum skin folded over on itself. This u-shaped divot was about 10 inches in diameter and similar in shape and size to that of a landing gear wheel.

The wreckage was recovered for further examination.


Andy Tyson


CHALLIS, Idaho — A Park City resident, prominent member in the health care industry and owner of an Idaho bed and breakfast was killed in a plane crash in a wilderness area of central Idaho Saturday.

John H. Short, 70, of Park City, was killed along with three others when his Cessna T210M crashed and caught fire in the Loon Creek drainage above the Diamond-D ranch, about 30 minutes outside of Challis.

Also killed in the crash were Andrew D. Tyson, 46, Russell "Rusty" T. Cheney, 34, and Aaron "A.J." Linnell, 39, all from Teton County, Idaho.

Short, the owner of the Diamond-D Ranch, was flying the three Idaho engineers from Creative Energies — solar power providers out of Victor, Idaho — to the ranch to assess a possible job installation, according to a statement from the Custer County Sheriff’s Department.

The plane landed at the Loon Creek Airstrip on Friday morning and the men spent about two hours assessing the job site, according to the sheriff's office. They took off again about 1 p.m. A short time later, the Federal Aviation Administration received an emergency locator transmitter activation from the aircraft.

Employees from the Double-D Ranch went out to investigate.

"They discovered a crashed single-engine aircraft at the north end of the Loon Creek Airstrip. The plane crashed then had caught fire, and the fuselage of the plane was burned away. All that remained was the tail section and wings," according to the sheriff's office.

The Custer County Sheriff’s Office was notified of the accident at 4:25 p.m. Because of nightfall, a 12-member search team, including aircraft, was assembled to start first thing Saturday morning to recover the bodies, according to the sheriff's office.

Short was a board member of several health care providers. At the time of his death, he was on the board of directors for Anthem Inc.

Employees at the Diamond-D Ranch declined comment to the Deseret News on Sunday, saying it was too early.

“John served our board with great commitment. He leaves a legacy of incredible business acumen, strategy formulation skills, and passion for business excellence recognized by all of us, as fellow colleagues who came to know him for his inquisitive nature and creative thinking,” Joseph Swedish, president and chief executive officer of Anthem, said in a prepared statement. “To me, John was an excellent adviser who brought his deep knowledge of operational performance to a variety of issues that have been critical to the transformation of our company. He was both a colleague and a friend, and he will be sorely missed.”

Short was the former CEO of RehabCare Group, acquired by Kindred Health Care. He had been an Anthem board member since September 2013.

According to one online bio, Short "previously served as executive chairman of the board of directors of Vericare Management Inc., a provider of mental health services to patients in long-term care facilities," and "from March 2012 to October 2012, as president and chief executive officer of RehabCare and as a director from 1991 to June 2011.

http://www.deseretnews.com

http://www.cesolar.com/about-our-team 


Update:     There will be a community gathering and candlelight vigil in remembrance of Linnell, Tyson and Cheney tomorrow evening 6 p.m., Sunday, April 12 at the Wildwood Room in Victor.

To offer or to request a room or space for out of town guests, please contact Erica Rice, 208.680.8944, ericakrice@gmail.com. Include name, phone/email and # of guests.

Family and friends of Andy Tyson and AJ Linnell are encouraged to contact Jaime Musnicki for help in arranging transportation to Teton Valley from nearby airports and for lodging in the area. She can be reached at 307-699-2049 or at jmusnicki@gmail.com. Family and friends of Russell Cheney can contact Linsey Hayes at 208-709-7964 or at linseyahayes@yahoo.com




Three Teton Valley residents are dead after a plane crash near Challis, Idaho. 

The three have been identified by family friends as A.J. Linnell, Andy Tyson and Russell “Rusty” Cheney. 

A fourth person, the pilot, also died. His name has not been released. 

According to the Custer County Sheriff's office, the men had flown to the Diamond D Ranch about 30 minutes away from Challis to asses the site for a possible solar or wind power installation. 

Tyson was the founder of Creative Energies, which Linnell and Cheney were employees of.

They landed successfully the morning of Friday, April 10 and spent a couple of hours evaluating the site. The plane took off around 1 p.m. and the aircraft’s emergency locator transmitter activated shortly after.

The Custer County Sheriff’s Office was notified of the accident at 4:25 p.m. Sheriff Stuart Lumpkin then activated Custer County Search and Rescue.

With light fading, SAR decided to wait until the next morning to deploy to the crash site. They had received a report from caretakers at the ranch that everyone on board was deceased and held off the recovery effort as not to endanger SAR personnel.

The sheriff’s office identified the aircraft as a Cessna T210M owned by John H. Short of Park City, Utah.

The cause of the crash has not been released. 

An investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board’s Seattle office was en route to the crash site as of 10 a.m. Saturday morning. NTSB Identification: WPR15FA143
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, April 10, 2015 in Challis, ID
Aircraft: CESSNA T210M, registration: N732YQ
Injuries: 4 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 April 10, 2015 about 1315 mountain daylight time, a Cessna Centurion T210M, N732YQ, collided with trees shortly after departing from Upper Loon Creek USFS Airport located in the Salmon-Challis National Forest near Challis, Idaho. The pilot, who was the registered owner, was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The private pilot and three passengers sustained fatal injuries; the airplane sustained substantial damage. The personal cross-country flight was originating from Upper Loon Creek with a planned destination of Driggs-Reed Memorial Airport, Driggs, Idaho. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot had a solar energy system installed on his residence in the Driggs area and wanted the same solar company, Creative Energies, to assess if it was possible to do a similar installation at his private residence at Diamond D Ranch, where he was a partial owner. The pilot had been staying in Driggs for several days and had planned to take a few of the Creative Energies employees to the ranch to perform an evaluation of the solar installation possibilities. Earlier in the week, he notified the ranch manager that he intended on flying into Upper Loon Creek, located about two miles downstream from the ranch on a northeasterly heading. During the winter, the ranch is only practically accessible by flying into the airport.

The pilot and three passengers departed from Driggs with the airplane loaded with full fuel in the wing tanks. After completing the approximate 170 nautical mile (nm) cross-country flight, the airplane landed at Upper Loon Creek. The solar employees performed their assessment and they all left the ranch about 1300 at which time the pilot told the ranch personnel that he wanted to depart before the wind picked up (the wind at the ranch was about 5 mph). There were no witnesses to the accident, nor did anyone at the ranch hear the airplane depart.

The accident site was located partially submerged in the shallow creek; the fuselage along with a majority of the wing skin was consumed by fire. Situated on the relatively level terrain, the airplane came to rest inverted and the debris path was oriented on a 080-degree magnetic heading. The main wreckage, which consisted of a majority of the airframe and engine, was located about 600 feet from the fence located at the end of runway 040 on a heading of 060 degrees. The runway and first identified impact marks were located on a raised plateau about 40 feet higher than the river.

The first identified impact point consisted of broken tree limbs located about 170 feet northeast from the center of the fence and about 430 feet south west of the main wreckage. The first tree impacted was identified by it having a junction where two separate branches forked upward, both of which had fresh cuts around the 50 foot level. The tree was located in line with the far right side of the fence, which was about 100 feet east of an extended runway centerline. There were numerous broken branches along the debris field to the main wreckage. The nose wheel was located about 100 feet from the first tree and remained on the plateau. The outboard half of the left horizontal stabilizer was found in the river around the same length down the debris field as the nose landing gear. The leading edge was deformed aft about 1 foot creating an accordion appearance, with the aluminum skin folded over on itself. This u-shaped divot was about 10 inches in diameter and similar in shape and size to that of a landing gear wheel.

The wreckage was recovered for further examination.


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.




Andy Tyson




AJ Linnell


Rusty Cheney




CHALLIS, Idaho — A Park City resident, prominent member in the health care industry and owner of an Idaho bed and breakfast was killed in a plane crash in a wilderness area of central Idaho Saturday.

John H. Short, 70, of Park City, was killed along with three others when his Cessna T210M crashed and caught fire in the Loon Creek drainage above the Diamond-D ranch, about 30 minutes outside of Challis.

Also killed in the crash were Andrew D. Tyson, 46, Russell "Rusty" T. Cheney, 34, and Aaron "A.J." Linnell, 39, all from Teton County, Idaho.

Short, the owner of the Diamond-D Ranch, was flying the three Idaho engineers from Creative Energies — solar power providers out of Victor, Idaho — to the ranch to assess a possible job installation, according to a statement from the Custer County Sheriff’s Department.

The plane landed at the Loon Creek Airstrip on Friday morning and the men spent about two hours assessing the job site, according to the sheriff's office. They took off again about 1 p.m. A short time later, the Federal Aviation Administration received an emergency locator transmitter activation from the aircraft.

Employees from the Double-D Ranch went out to investigate.

"They discovered a crashed single-engine aircraft at the north end of the Loon Creek Airstrip. The plane crashed then had caught fire, and the fuselage of the plane was burned away. All that remained was the tail section and wings," according to the sheriff's office.

The Custer County Sheriff’s Office was notified of the accident at 4:25 p.m. Because of nightfall, a 12-member search team, including aircraft, was assembled to start first thing Saturday morning to recover the bodies, according to the sheriff's office.

Short was a board member of several health care providers. At the time of his death, he was on the board of directors for Anthem Inc.

Employees at the Diamond-D Ranch declined comment to the Deseret News on Sunday, saying it was too early.

“John served our board with great commitment. He leaves a legacy of incredible business acumen, strategy formulation skills, and passion for business excellence recognized by all of us, as fellow colleagues who came to know him for his inquisitive nature and creative thinking,” Joseph Swedish, president and chief executive officer of Anthem, said in a prepared statement. “To me, John was an excellent adviser who brought his deep knowledge of operational performance to a variety of issues that have been critical to the transformation of our company. He was both a colleague and a friend, and he will be sorely missed.”

Short was the former CEO of RehabCare Group, acquired by Kindred Health Care. He had been an Anthem board member since September 2013.

According to one online bio, Short "previously served as executive chairman of the board of directors of Vericare Management Inc., a provider of mental health services to patients in long-term care facilities," and "from March 2012 to October 2012, as president and chief executive officer of RehabCare and as a director from 1991 to June 2011.

http://www.deseretnews.com

http://www.cesolar.com/about-our-team 


Update:     There will be a community gathering and candlelight vigil in remembrance of Linnell, Tyson and Cheney tomorrow evening 6 p.m., Sunday, April 12 at the Wildwood Room in Victor.

To offer or to request a room or space for out of town guests, please contact Erica Rice, 208.680.8944, ericakrice@gmail.com. Include name, phone/email and # of guests.

Family and friends of Andy Tyson and AJ Linnell are encouraged to contact Jaime Musnicki for help in arranging transportation to Teton Valley from nearby airports and for lodging in the area. She can be reached at 307-699-2049 or at jmusnicki@gmail.com. Family and friends of Russell Cheney can contact Linsey Hayes at 208-709-7964 or at linseyahayes@yahoo.com




Three Teton Valley residents are dead after a plane crash near Challis, Idaho. 

The three have been identified by family friends as A.J. Linnell, Andy Tyson and Russell “Rusty” Cheney. 

A fourth person, the pilot, also died. His name has not been released. 

According to the Custer County Sheriff's office, the men had flown to the Diamond D Ranch about 30 minutes away from Challis to asses the site for a possible solar or wind power installation. 

Tyson was the founder of Creative Energies, which Linnell and Cheney were employees of.

They landed successfully the morning of Friday, April 10 and spent a couple of hours evaluating the site. The plane took off around 1 p.m. and the aircraft’s emergency locator transmitter activated shortly after.

The Custer County Sheriff’s Office was notified of the accident at 4:25 p.m. Sheriff Stuart Lumpkin then activated Custer County Search and Rescue.

With light fading, SAR decided to wait until the next morning to deploy to the crash site. They had received a report from caretakers at the ranch that everyone on board was deceased and held off the recovery effort as not to endanger SAR personnel.

The sheriff’s office identified the aircraft as a Cessna T210M owned by John H. Short of Park City, Utah.

The cause of the crash has not been released. 

An investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board’s Seattle office was en route to the crash site as of 10 a.m. Saturday morning.