Saturday, April 18, 2015

Cessna 140, N76452: Accident occurred April 18, 2015 in Mize, Smith County, Mississippi

NTSB Identification: GAA15CA042
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Mize, MS
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/08/2015
Aircraft: CESSNA 140, registration: N76452
Injuries: 1 Minor.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported that the pilot made an emergency landing on a highway due to weather conditions. The FAA stated that during the landing roll, the airplane struck a highway sign, flipped upside down, and sustained substantial damage to the fuselage. 

It is unknown if there were any pre-impact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from obstacles during an off airport precautionary landing roll.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported that the pilot made an emergency landing on a highway due to weather conditions. The FAA stated that during the landing roll, the airplane struck a highway sign, flipped upside down, and sustained substantial damage to the fuselage. The pilot refused to make a statement to the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge. After multiple requests, the pilot did not turn in the National Transportation Safety Board Form 6120.1 Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident/Incident Report as requested.

It is unknown if there were any pre-impact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

FAA FSDO:     FAA Jackson FSDO-31


WILLIAM RICHARD BENSYL: http://registry.faa.gov/N76452

 MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

 SMITH COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) - Authorities in Smith County are on the scene where a plane made an emergency landing near Mize Saturday evening.

We're told the incident happened around 6:50 p.m.

Sheriff Charlie Crumpton confirmed the small aircraft, successfully landed on Highway 28 then flipped after its wing hit the ground. 

Officials on the scene described the plane as a red Cessna.

Crumpton said the 78-year-old male pilot was able to walk away from the plane, but appeared somewhat disoriented after the landing. We're told he was the only person aboard the aircraft.

Officials tell us the man suffered minor injuries. MHP Trooper Andy West said he was taken to South Central Regional Medical Center in Laurel.

Officials said there were no vehicles on the roadway at the time and traffic was being redirected.

We are told the pilot took off from Atlanta and was headed to Houston.

The Federal Aviation Administration has been called in to investigate.

We're told the plane has been removed.










The Smith County Sheriff's Department responded to a single engine plane crash in the middle of a storm. 

It happened on Highway 28 just east of Mize a little after 6:00 PM. 

That area had been under a tornado warning when the crash happened.

Thankfully, there were no major injuries reported as a result of the crash. 

The pilot was able to walk away from the crash. He was taken by ambulance to South Central Hospital to be checked out.

 Authorities say the pilot was trying to make an emergency landing near Highway 28 when the plane went down.

 The pilot hit a sign along the way, which caused the plane to tumble and crash.

The Sheriff's Department was assisted by the Mississippi Highway Patrol, The Smith County Volunteer Fire Department and authorities out of Taylorsville. 

All lanes of Highway 28 are clear and moving at this point.

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



SMITH COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -    Smith County Sheriff Charlie Crumpton confirmed a plane crashed Saturday evening on Highway 28 near Mize.

We're told Mississippi Highway Patrol Officials along with Smith County authorities are on the scene.

Sheriff Crumpton said the aircraft landed on Highway 28 and flipped.

Law enforcement officials at the scene said the male pilot was en route to South Central Regional Medical Center in Laurel, with minor injuries.

We're told he was flying from Atlanta to Houston and got caught in the storm.

Skydiver injured: Skydive Fargo at West Fargo Municipal Airport (D54), North Dakota



West Fargo, ND (WDAY/WDAZ TV) - Skydive Fargo is investigating what went wrong in an accident involving an experienced skydiver Saturday morning.

West Fargo Police and F-M Ambulance responded to a call on the east side of the West Fargo airport around 11:45.

48-year-old Roger Thompson from Bismarck was skydiving when police say he hit the ground hard.

Police say Thompson was complaining of leg and ankle injuries along with back pain. He was taken to Sanford.

Thompson told police he has been skydiving at least 70 times.

Joe Birrenkott/West Fargo Police, "From what we have described, he probably came in a little steep instead of pulling up. But the only witness that we have is another guy that was about 1,000 feet above him."

The incident is still under investigation.

According to police, they believe Skydive Fargo will have to file paperwork on the case with the FAA.

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

Cessna 400 Corvalis - LC41-550FG, N400BZ: Accident occurred April 18, 2015 at Space Coast Regional Airport (KTIX), Titusville, Florida

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

ICARUS AIR LLC: http://registry.faa.gov/N400BZ

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA189
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Titusville, FL
Aircraft: CESSNA LC41-550FG, registration: N400BZ
Injuries: 3 Uninjured.

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 18, 2014, about 1300 eastern daylight time, a Cessna LC41-550FG airplane, N400BZ, was substantially damaged during a fire after landing near Space Coast Regional Airport (TIX), Titusville, Florida. The private pilot, pilot rated passenger and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for the flight, which departed from Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (SAV), Savannah, Georgia about 1145 and was destined for Okeechobee County Airport (OBE), Okeechobee, Florida. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the pilot, he planned to fly the airplane to OBE for a 50 hour service and some cosmetic work. During the pilot's preflight he noted about 7 quarts of oil in the engine and subsequently departed. About 1 hour into the flight and during a descent to 8,000 feet, the pilot noticed the oil pressure drop "into the red"; the other instruments remained "in the green." The pilot reported the loss of oil pressure to ATC and about a minute later the oil pressure dropped to zero. He identified the nearest airport as TIX and started an emergency descent. As they approached 3,000 feet, the engine quit and smoke began to come into the cabin through the fresh air vents. The pilot completed a forced landing to runway 27 and once the airplane came to rest he observed flames coming from the cowling. A fire consumed most of the airplane after the pilot and passengers egressed.

Initial examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the engine cowling was destroyed by fire and portions of the airframe and cabin area were substantially damaged. At the time he also noted the cylinder #3 exhaust rocker box cover was completely missing and another hung from two screws. The cylinder #2 exhaust box rocker cover was loose and missing multiple screws. The fire department searched runway 27 and the adjacent grass areas, but did not locate the missing rocker cover.

Postaccident examination of the airplane was conducted on-scene by representatives of the engine and airframe manufacturer and supervised by the FAA. A large amount of soot and thermal by-products were observed on the cylinder #3 exposed rocker arm and surrounding head surfaces. There was a small hole on the top of the right crankcase half near the cylinder #5 base and a similar hole was observed on the left crankcase half near the base of cylinder #4. The through-bolt nut to the top rear crankcase section was missing and its associated washer was located on top of the adjacent oil cooler tank. The through-bolt head had backed off from the inserted position by about one half inch.

The forward section of the oil sump was destroyed by fire. The oil rod was intact and a small amount of dark thick liquid was on the bottom ½ inch of the rod. The oil quick drain valve was found in the closed position and secured to the sump with safety wire. Both the oil cooler and oil filter were intact and exhibited some thermal damage; the oil pressure sending unit was destroyed by fire.

The airplane and engine were retained by the NTSB for further examination.

The SD card from the onboard Garmin G1000 glass panel display was recovered from the airplane and sent to the NTSB Recorder's Laboratory in Washington, DC, for further examination.





TITUSVILLE -- 

A father and son escaped injury after their plane caught fire in Brevard County.

The Cessna 550 landed safely around 1 p.m. Saturday at Space Coast Regional Airport, 355 Golden Knights Blvd, according Terry Wooldridge, the airport's fire chief.

The plane was headed to Okeechobee from Savannah, Georgia when the plane lost oil pressure.

Wooldridge said the fire started in the engine and most of the damage was confined to the front of the aircraft.

The Titusville-Cocoa Airport Authority said emergency landings are rare. However, other planes were able to land on the second runway as the plane was removed.

The names of those involved have yet to be released.

Grumman G-164A, N7951: Accident occurred April 18, 2015 in Maysville, Garvin County, Oklahoma

Regis#: N7951 
Aircraft Make: GRUMMAN
Aircraft Model: G164
Event Type: Accident
Highest Injury: Minor
Damage: Substantial
Activity: Aerial Application
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
FAA FSDO: FAA Oklahoma City FSDO-15
City: MAYSVILLE
State: Oklahoma

AIRCRAFT DURING AERIAL APPLICATION FORCE LANDED IN A FIELD AND FLIPPED OVER, NEAR MAYSVILLE, OK

JERRY L. PUTMAN:   http://registry.faa.gov/N7951

GARVIN COUNTY, Okla. —A man was taken to the hospital Saturday morning after a crop duster plane crash, according to a Federal Aviation Administration report.

About 11:35 a.m. Saturday, the plane's engine lost power and landed on its nose three miles west of Maysville, officials said.

The pilot was taken to a hospital in Lindsay. His condition has not been released.

The pilot was the only person in the plane.

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

Mooney M20C Ranger, N9680M: Accident occurred April 18, 2015 near Winchester Municipal Airport (KBGF), Tennessee

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA190
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Winchester, TN
Aircraft: MOONEY M20C, registration: N9680M
Injuries: 5 Minor.

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 18, 2015, about 1452 central daylight time, a Mooney M20C, N9680M, impacted terrain shortly after takeoff from runway 18 at the Winchester Municipal Airport (BFG), Winchester, Tennessee. The private pilot and four passengers received minor injuries. The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings and fuselage. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. The airplane was operated by a private individual under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

The pilot reported that after takeoff, he "lost power" and "put it down in a field across from the end of the runway" to avoid power lines. The pilot also stated that there were five people onboard the airplane. The airplane had four seats, and a baggage area located behind the rear seats. 

Examination of the wreckage at the scene by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the airplane impacted a grass field about a quarter mile south of the runway and came to rest on the edge of a roadway. Both propeller blades exhibited leading edge gouging and chordwise scratches. One blade exhibited aft "s" bending; the other was bent forward about mid span. Airplane recovery personnel drained about 30 gallons of fuel from the airplane at the scene. 

A postaccident examination of the engine was conducted by an FAA inspector at a secure facility. Engine crankshaft continuity was confirmed on all cylinders, valves and accessory gears. Continuity of the valvetrain was verified through a thumb compression test. The spark plugs were removed and inspected; each displayed a light gray color. The carburetor bowl was examined and was found to be free of debris. The bowl contained fuel and about one half teaspoon of water.

The 1435 recorded weather observation at BGF included wind 170 at 5 knots, visibility 10 miles with few clouds at 8000 feet, temperature 79 degrees F, dew point 57 degrees F; barometric altimeter 29.93 inches of mercury.


PRESSLEY BRENT DBA: http://registry.faa.gov/N9680M




WINCHESTER, Tenn. – Authorities confirmed a Mooney carrying a pilot and four passengers crashed just after takeoff at the Winchester Municipal Airport. 

Officials said the small plane went down about 500 yards after taking off. All five on board were taken by helicopter to a nearby hospital.

Those with the Franklin County Sheriff's Office said they were expected to survive.

The pilot told officials the plane lost power during takeoff, but authorities said that would have to be confirmed through an investigation.

Authorities said the plane initially made impact in the ground, skidded across Williams Cove Road, and spun around, stopping partially on the road.

The names of those injured have not been released.

Carey Wofford, chairman of the Winchester Airport Authority, said the plane was a Mooney 21 designed for four people. Wofford added the plane would have been several hundred feet off the ground before it experienced trouble.

The investigation was set to be handled by the Federal Aviation Administration. 

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




FRANKLIN COUNTY, TN. (WAAY)-According to the Franklin County Sheriff's Office, 5 people where injured when a small plane taking off from the Winchester Municipal Airport crashed on Williams Cove Road.

It happened around  2:45 p.m. Saturday. 

Three people were flown to area hospitals and two were transported by ambulance.

Officials said everyone was in stable condition.

Deputies believe there might have been too much weight on the plane as it was taking off and it wasn't able to reach proper elevation.

The plane went down about a quarter mile from the airport.

The Federal Aviation Administration will be conducting an investigation.

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











Several occupants in a small aircraft were injured mid afternoon Saturday in a crash near Winchester Airport.'

At about 3 p.m., a small passenger aircraft crashed on Williams Cove Road in Winchester after either missing the runway at the Winchester Regional Airport or after attempting to land, with four passengers on board.

The pilot was shaken up, and acknowledging being in pain, but was able to walk around, was conscious and alert. 

Local emergency personnel, fire department, Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies and Winchester Police Chief Dennis Young were on the scene to help evacuate those injured and assess the incident.

The passengers were in the process of being evacuated shortly after the plane crashed. Two were being airlifted. 

Further updates will be available as authorities release information.

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








WINCHESTER, Tenn. (WKRN) – A small plane carrying five people went down in Winchester Saturday afternoon.

The aircraft crashed around 2:30 p.m. on Williams Cove Road shortly after taking off from the Winchester Municipal Airport.

Officials told News 2 the pilot was unable to get above the power lines, so he banked left and crashed. 

The aircraft was on its belly and never flipped over.

Four passengers were taken to a nearby hospital with non-life threatening injuries. 

The pilot was transported to Southern Tennessee Medical Center for back pain.

The exact cause of the crash has yet to be determined.

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







Aero Academy International located at McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport (KMKL), Jackson, Tennessee



After meeting an individual from the Economic Development Team of West Tennessee, Ravi S. Virdi gave serious thought before deciding to open a flight school at McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport.

“I was in Canada, and after noting my business and visiting me, he offered me (a member of the Economic Development Team) to come to Tennessee and visit with the team of Mr. Mike Philpot to see if I would like to start a flight school here,” Virdi said. “And so, after thinking for some two years, I decided to visit West Tennessee in 2012.”

Virdi said he met with the Economic Development Team, and a tour of West Tennessee followed.

“They opened the doors for me to choose any airport to start the International Flight School,” Virdi said. “In three days, they took me across many counties, and showed me various airport operations.”

Virdi, 43, said McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport won out after he considered the possibilities, and Aero Academy International LLC set up shop in Jackson.

“I selected Jackson … as the Airport Authority with Mr. Steve Smith and Ms. Cindy Melton provided the most professional outlook and future development plan that will fit with the establishment of an International Flight School — and provide the facility for continued growth and further expansion,” Virdi said. “Further, Jackson, as seen by me, was very diversified and was able to accept the different cultures that would come with the international students, and make them feel at home.

Smith is the executive director at McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport, and Melton is the deputy director.

In June 2012, Virdi decided Jackson would become home of Aero Academy International LLC, and in February 2014, the school opened at McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport.

“Aero Academy International LLC is a Tennessee registered corporation that was started as a requirement to fulfill the gap in need for aviation school that provides a professional level of training in West Tennessee,” Virdi said. “Aero Academy International LLC’s management team brings with them a combined operational experience of more than 90 years of training students that has given the most importance to provide the highest level of aviation-based training with safety oriented piloting skill level development for students.”

Virdi said with the highly developed training program, the academy is able to meet all the needs of its students to ensure safety and skills are given the highest priority during flying.

“AAI will be able to bring international students to Jackson, Tennessee, who help in the growth of the local economy through the training program that is 12 months in duration,” Virdi said. “Each student will spend more than $20,000 on accommodations, food, entertainment and travel. AAI has its own offices in China and India to recruit student pilots for professional pilot training course.”

While Virdi awaits word on the internationals, the process of arriving in Jackson didn’t happen overnight for him either.

He was born in Bombay, India, and moved to Qatar with his parents when he was in the equivalent of middle school to complete his higher education.

At age 17, Virdi was headed for the Lone Star State.

“After completion of my studies, I was provided with all the support by my parents to achieve the Professional Pilot Training and Management degree in Aviation, and joined the ACME School of Aeronautics in Ft. Worth, Texas, in 1988,” Virdi said. “I completed my training in seven months in Texas, and joined Gulf Airlines as training first officer on a Boeing 737-200.”

Virdi left Gulf Air and returned to India at the age of 24, and became a first officer with East-West Airlines.

“I flew for them for three years and my wife (Ahlen) and I moved to Canada in 1996, where I started Executive Charter Service and Time Sensitive Cargo Corporation,” Virdi said. “I met and married my wife during my years with Gulf Air.”

Virdi said he became interested in aviation as a child, and he had a game plan just in case his parents objected to him flying airplanes for a living.

“I was very much interested in becoming an Air force fighter pilot, but as time passed, I saw more advantage in becoming an airline pilot, and with the support from parents, I was able to fulfill my dream and continued the path of becoming a pilot,” Virdi said. “I remember telling my mother — due to the fear of my parents of flying a plane and the expense of training as a pilot — that if I cannot become a plane driver, I will become a bus driver, so the choice is yours, what you want me to become, and support me financially … so they did.”

The professional training program takes one year, and an additional six months for management in the aviation course.

Virdi completed his requirements in six months.

“With extreme hard work, one can complete the course in six to eight months,” Virdi said. “My goal was to get into the airlines at a very young age, and I wanted it as a challenge and a statement to myself that I could be proud of. I received the best training in the field of advanced customer service, dangerous goods, ID of passports and Visa at the check-in counter, dispatcher and such airlines related courses through the British Airways training system.”

All while working for Gulf Air as a ground staff member for the first year, and then offered the opportunity to join the airline as a Trainee First Officer on a Boeing B737-200 Classic.

“No, not in that part of the world,” Virdi said, when asked if it was unusual for a teenager to pilot a commercial jet. “In the Asian countries, the requirements are not as harsh as the United States and Canada, where a pilot needs 2,500 hours and ATPL (Airline Transport Pilot License) to get into the First Officer seat.”

Besides Jackson, Virdi said students attending the academy are from Milan, Medina, Lexington and Memphis.

Virdi owns four aircraft the academy uses for flight training.

“We also provide aircraft rental, and have many clients who rent our aircraft to fly for meetings or a weekend with their friends and family,” Virdi said. “Our client base is growing every month through the positive referral from our present clients, and we also have been doing a lot of aerial photo shoots and sightseeing tours.

“We expect the fleet to grow to 15 aircraft with the arrival of the international students within the next 12 months. We plan to make the Jackson airport one of the busiest airports in all of Tennessee.”

Virdi maintains a professional pilot training flight school in Canada.

“It has been operating with international students since 1989,” Virdi said. “This flight school is also called Aero Academy International Inc., and is managed by my daughter, Ms. Ritu, who is a flight instructor and delegate of the (Canadian) aviation minister to issue pilot’s license.”

Virdi has two full-time and three part-time employees at McKellar-Sipes, a number he said will change once the academy receives its SEVIS — Student and Exchange Visitors Program — certification.

“We can start bringing in international students, and we will be able to add another seven full-time jobs, or more. AAI has just been granted an airline training contract to train 80 students that will itself bring in revenue of $3 million. In a simplified accounting concept, AAI will add a minimum of $2.5 million of revenue that is brought into Jackson, Tennessee, by the international students, which is funds coming into the USA from international markets.”

About Aero Academy International LLC

•The academy is owned by Ravi S. Virdi, who also serves as president.

•The academy is located at McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport, 2500 Grady Montgomery Drive.

•For more information, call (731) 424-8485.

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

Beech F33A Bonanza, N84MD: Accident occurred April 18, 2015 in Puyallup, Washington

DANIEL W. CLARK: http://registry.faa.gov/N84MD

NTSB Identification: WPR15LA167
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Puyallup, WA
Aircraft: BEECH F33A, registration: N84MD
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

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 18, 2015 about 1100 Pacific daylight time, a Beech F33A, N84MD, experienced a total loss of engine power shortly after takeoff from Pierce County Airport – Thun Field (PLU) in Puyallup, Washington. The pilot (sole occupant) sustained no injuries, and the airplane sustained substantial damage to the engine mounting structure. The airplane was registered to, and operated by, the pilot under provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, and no flight plan was filed. 

The pilot reported that, during the initial climb, the engine suddenly powered back and quit with no abnormal noises. The pilot initiated a forced landing onto a field. During the landing, the nose wheel collapsed and the airplane came to rest in a nose low attitude. 


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

FAA FSDO: FAA Seattle FSDO-01





PUYALLUP, Wash. - A small plane crashed just after taking off from the THUN Field in Puyallup.

Witnesses reported seeing the plane crash Saturday morning in a field near the South Hill LA fitness.

For unknown reasons, the plane stalled in mid-air.

The pilot glided the plane into a field, destroying the plane's propeller upon landing.

There was no official word on the pilot's condition but people at the scene said it appeared the pilot was OK.

The FAA identified the aircraft as a Beech 33 Bonanza.

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





A small plane crashed just after takeoff from THUN Field in Puyallup on Saturday morning.

The FAA identified the aircraft as a Beech 33 Bonanza.


The plane crashed in a field near the South Hill LA Fitness.


There was no official word on the pilot, but people who took photos and video at the scene said the pilot appeared to be OK.


Original article can be found here:   http://www.king5.com


















Cessna 206H, N3535M: Fatal accident occurred April 18, 2015 in Redding, California

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

Aviation Accident Final Report  -  National Transportation Safety Board: 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

TSB Identification: WPR15LA150
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Redding, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/21/2016
Aircraft: CESSNA 206H, registration: N3535M
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.

A witness reported that he saw the airplane climb and then abruptly descend straight down and that it sounded as if the engine was at full power. Radar data indicated that the airplane departed the airport climbing to the east. While still climbing, the airplane made an approximate 360-degree turn. When the airplane reached about 5,500 ft, it descended in a straight line until it impacted the ground. While law enforcement officers were on scene, they received notification of a welfare check on the pilot because he had sent suicidal text messages to friends and family members earlier that morning. The autopsy report determined that the pilot’s cause of death was multiple traumatic injuries and blunt force trauma with the manner of death being suicide.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's intentional descent into terrain.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On April 18, 2015, about 083
8 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 206H, N3535M, impacted terrain about six miles east of the Redding Municipal Airport (RDD), Redding, California. The commercial pilot (the sole occupant) was fatally injured, and the airplane was destroyed. The airplane was registered to Wells Fargo Bank Northwest NA Trustee, and operated by McClelland Aviation doing business as Aperture Aviation under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from RDD at about 0830.

A witness reported that he heard and saw the airplane climbing and gaining altitude when the airplane abruptly descended straight down at, what sounded like, full power. About 500 feet above the ground he heard the engine slowly decelerate before the airplane impacted an open field. The witness mentioned that he did not observe any evasive maneuvers prior to impact.

Radar data revealed the airplane took off and proceeded to climb towards the east. About nine miles from the airport the airplane continued to climb and made an approximate 360 degree turn. Toward the end of the turn, the airplane reached about 5,500 feet. The airplane descended in a straight line until it impacted the ground.

Law enforcement reported that, while they were on scene, they received notification of a welfare check on the pilot because he had sent suicidal text messages to various friends and family members earlier that morning.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 34, held a commercial pilot certificate, as well as a certified flight instructor certificate, for airplane single- and multi- engine land with an instrument rating. The pilot also held a first-class airman medical certificate issued October 14, 2014 with no limitations. During the pilot's most recent medical examination, he reported that he had 850 total flight hours, 350 of which occurred in the previous six months.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The two-seat, high-wing, fixed-gear airplane, serial number 20608161, was manufactured in 2001. It was powered by a Lycoming IO-540-AC1A5, 300 horsepower engine, and equipped with a McCauley Model B3D36C432/80VSA-1 controllable pitch propeller. The airplane's most recent maintenance was an annual inspection that occurred on May 12, 2015.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

At 0753, the weather at RDD was reported as calm wind, 10 statute miles of visibility, clear skies, temperature 13 degrees C, dewpoint 8 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 30.02 inches of Mercury.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

Given the nature of the accident the National Transportation Safety Board did not conduct an on scene examination. However, photographs provided by law enforcement as well as the Federal Aviation Administration revealed the airplane impacted in a nose low attitude and was heavily fragmented throughout. The engine was separated from the firewall and was heavily damaged. The camshaft from within the engine was found separated and was bent mid span. There was a heavy fuel odor around the wreckage.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Shasta County Coroner reported the pilot's cause of death was multiple traumatic injuries and blunt force trauma, with the manner of death being suicide.

The Federal Aviation Administration's Civil Aerospace Medical Institute performed forensic toxicology on the specimens from the pilot with no evidence of tested drugs detected in the muscle. The test was positive for ethanol (24 mg/dL) detected in the muscle; it was unable to be determined if the ethanol was from ingestion or postmortem production.

NTSB Identification: WPR15LA150
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Redding, CA
Aircraft: CESSNA 206H, registration: N3535M
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 18, 2015, about 0834 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 206H, N3535M, impacted terrain about 6 miles east of the Redding Municipal Airport (RDD), Redding, California. The commercial pilot (the sole occupant) died, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to Wells Fargo Bank Northwest NA Trustee, and operated by Aperture Aviation under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from RDD at about 0823.

Radar data revealed the airplane took off and proceeded to climb towards the east. About 9 miles from the airport the airplane continued to climb and made an approximate 360 degree turn. Toward the end of the turn the airplane reached about 5,500 feet when it descended abruptly until it impacted the ground. 

http://registry.faa.gov/N3535M

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.

 
Shasta County Sheriff's Office
Zachary Cain Stickler crashed his plane into a California field on April 18, 2015, a day after he pleaded not guilty in Shasta County Superior Court to making criminal threats and to a misdemeanor battery charge stemming from an alleged domestic dispute. (AP)


 

A pilot who authorities said took his life by intentionally crashing his plane into a field in northern California Saturday formerly lived in the Chicago area before he moved to the West Coast to further his career, his former employer said. 
 
Zachary Cain Stickler, 34, formerly of Wadsworth in Lake County, had texted friends to let them know his intentions, authorities in California said.

The previous day, Stickler had pleaded not guilty in Shasta County Superior Court to making criminal threats and to a misdemeanor battery charge stemming from an alleged domestic dispute, Chief Deputy District Attorney Stephanie Bridgett said.

"I was absolutely shocked when I heard that," said Jason Lamberton, chief operating officer of Accelerated Flight Training in Long Beach, Calif., where Stickler had previously worked as a flight instructor. "You never really know somebody, but he was not the kind of individual. … It is a terrible terrible loss."

Stickler moved from Wadsworth to Long Beach in late 2013, according to public records. He worked for Accelerated Flight Training for about 10 months before telling Lamberton in December that he was leaving the job to accommodate his girlfriend's job opportunity.

The couple moved to Redding, Calif., in the Sacramento Valley more than 200 miles north of San Francisco.

"They moved here to launch their professional careers together," said Lamberton, who described Stickler as professional and punctual. "…I offered to give him a reference (when he left the company) because he was an asset to our team."

The charges stemmed from an argument in February in Redding that escalated and became physical, Bridgett said. The victim was dating Stickler, and the two were living together.

The woman with whom he lived posted on her Facebook page Saturday: "The greatest adventure buddy of my life died yesterday. He told me he had no regrets."

She went on seemingly to quote Stickler as stating, "'I'm going out on a high note. I actually lived life. How many people can truly say that? Is it better to have something mediocre for years and years or have something that's condensed with beauty and over quickly?...I LOVED MY LIFE!'"

Stickler killed himself by crashing into a pasture on Saturday morning, Shasta County Sheriff's Deputy Dustin Reynolds said. Sheriff's officials responded to a report of an explosion around 8:30 a.m. and found a small debris field at the site where the single-engine Cessna crashed.

Text messages Stickler sent to friends and family before he crashed indicated he was distraught and planned to kill himself, Reynolds said. There was no indication he wanted to hurt anyone else, Reynolds added.

Sheriff's officials said they did not know what, if anything, triggered Stickler to take his life.

Stickler worked more recently for Aperture Aviation, an aerial photography company, which extended its sympathies to his family and friends in a statement.

The Federal Aviation Administration has assigned two inspectors to the crash, one of whom may conduct an on-site inspection, FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said.

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


REDDING, Calif. —A pilot killed himself by intentionally crashing his plane into a field in California a day after pleading not guilty to domestic violence charges, authorities said Tuesday.

Zachary Cain Stickler, 34, entered the plea on Friday in Shasta County Superior Court to a felony count of making criminal threats and a misdemeanor battery charge, Chief Deputy District Attorney Stephanie Bridgett said.

The charges stemmed from an argument in February in Redding that escalated and became physical, Bridgett said. The victim was dating Stickler, and the two were living together.

She declined to provide more detail, saying she wanted to protect the victim's privacy.

Stickler committed suicide by crashing into a pasture on Saturday morning, Shasta County Sheriff's Deputy Dustin Reynolds said. Sheriff's officials responded to a report of an explosion around 8:30 a.m. and found a small debris field at the site where the single-engine Cessna crashed.

Reynolds said text messages Stickler sent to friends and family before he crashed indicated he was distraught and planned to kill himself. There was no indication he wanted to hurt anyone else, Reynolds said.

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The pilot who was involved in a plane crash early Saturday morning in Millville has been identified as Zachary Cain Stickler, 34, from Grass Valley. 

According to the Shasta County Sheriff's office, the plane crash was intentional. Investigators say Stickler left messages with family and friends.

Investigators say Stickler was using the single engine Cessna 206 for work and the plane was registered to a third party.

Stickler took off from the Redding airport just after 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, just 34 minutes later the plane crashed in an open field in Millville.

Residents in the area reported hearing an explosion prior to the plane going down.

Stickler was the only occupant inside the plane during the time of the crash.

The coroner's office identified Stickler through fingerprints.

The Shasta County Sheriff's Office is working with NTSB on providing any information needed.




MILLVILLE, Calif. - The pilot of the single occupant plane crash on Saturday morning in Millville Plains has been identified as Zachary Cain Stickler, 34, of Grass Valley, California, the Shasta County Corner's Office reported Monday. 

According to officials, Stickler boarded the small aircraft from the Redding Airport shortly after 8:00 a.m., the collision was reported at 8:34 a.m.

It was determined through the investigation and interviews that the collision was an intentional act, not an accident. Due to the intentional act, the FAA will not be responding for a formal investigation. The Sheriff’s Office will forward their investigation to the FAA for review.

The Coroner’s Office was able to make notification of the next of kin.

The area of the collision is on private property and the Sheriff’s Office is heavily discouraging the public from attempting to view the area of the collision.

A security company at the scene is not allowing anyone onto the property at this time.



  MILLVILLE, Calif. - One person is believed dead after a single-engine plane crashed in a field off Leopard Drive near Millville, about 20 miles east of Redding.

A woman and her husband living nearby reported hearing a loud explosion and finding debris in their yard on Leopard Drive off Dersch Road about 8:40 a.m. this morning.

First responders confirmed a small, white single-engine plane crashed in a field nearby. A California Highway Patrol helicopter said there was a small debris pile in the area about 8:50 a.m.

Allen Kenitzer, a spokesman with the Federal Aviation Administration, said one person was onboard the Cessna 206, which crashed "under unknown circumstances."

A Shasta County Coroner's van arrived at  the crash site about 11:40 a.m.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate, Kenitzer said.

The aircraft was significantly damaged in the crash, creating a debris field about 110 yards in diameter, according to Shasta County Sheriff's Sgt. Gene Randall.

Dispatchers said the FAA and Redding Municipal Airport initially did not report losing contact with any aircraft in the area.

http://www.redding.com


























Worries near Gillespie Field Airport (KSEE), San Diego, California • With planned expansion, El Cajon residents seek "enforceable rules"

Building would house aviation-related businesses 



It’s been 11 years since the drone and snarl of race cars was heard around East County’s Cajon Speedway. Now that noise has been replaced by the drone of small aircraft from adjacent Gillespie Field.

The El Cajon airport, owned and operated by San Diego County, has reclaimed the 70 acres on its west side it had leased to the speedway for 50 years. The site also included a golf driving range and a motocross course.

The airport’s redevelopment plans for the proposed Cajon Air Center include a new taxiway and construction of aviation-related businesses on a portion of the land. The County Board of Supervisors approved the final environmental impact report on the Gillespie Field 70-Acre Redevelopment Project, which includes the Cajon Air Center, in 2012.

“Site development will be in phases and is contingent upon [Federal Aviation Administration] funding,” Gillespie Field manager Marc Baskel said in a recent email.

The project has so far received $2.84 million in FAA grants and $292,000 from the airport’s enterprise fund, Baskel said.

But some of Gillespie Field’s neighbors in Santee, Lakeside, and the Fletcher Hills area of El Cajon have concerns, including increased air traffic and noise from low-flying aircraft, as well as possible expansion of the current seven flight schools at the field.

“We are not calling for the closure of Gillespie Field and never have,” said Sue Strom of ASAP (Advocates for Safe Airport Policies), a group of Fletcher Hills residents. “We have always been asking for enforceable rules.”

Strom says her group spent three years “talking to everybody” but received pushback from government officials, some pilots, and the Gillespie Field Development Council. Now the group is ready to file a mass tort suit against the Gillespie Field flight schools and the County of San Diego. The civil action will ask for injunctive relief to reduce the use of highly leaded aviation fuel and monetary compensation for noise remediation, reduced home values, and decreased enjoyment of their homes by the resident plaintiffs.

Decreased enjoyment is important to ASAP member Christopher Dean, a Celtic guitarist who performs professionally and records music in his home studio.

“When I record an acoustic guitar track, I have to do at least five takes to edit out airplane noise,” Dean said.

Dean and his wife bought their Fletcher Hills home in 1990, and he said there were “no issues” until 2005 when he noticed an increase in small planes flying low over their home, some at intervals of three every 60 seconds.

“We have been deprived of what we’ve been guaranteed,” Dean said. “We are unable to enjoy our home.”

However, figures provided by Baskel show the aircraft operation (a takeoff or a landing) number for 2014 was 199,388, down from a high of 300,391 in 2007 and a 51-year average of 218,795.

Safety concerns also include the fact that pilots often fly under radar due to the surrounding mountains. FAA rules call for an altitude of at least 1000 feet over the highest obstacle in a congested area, except for takeoff or landing. The radio control tower at Gillespie Field is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, but there are no curfews on flights.

The airport curfew is voluntary because federal grant assurances don’t allow airport sponsors to restrict access, Baskel said. “However, just because it is voluntary doesn’t mean that aircraft operators don’t treat our voluntary noise abatement procedures as policy,” he said.

Lakeside resident Robert Germann is a founding member and spokesperson for CAGE/LFA (Citizens Against Gillespie’s Expansion and Low Flying Aircraft). Although CAGE and ASAP agree on some issues, he says one of CAGE’s main concerns is the flight schools. Germann said the FAA is proposing a grant to Gillespie Field to train foreign pilots, a program he calls “pilot mills, essentially.” Many of the student pilots do not understand English very well, leading to possible safety issues while communicating with the control tower, he added.

CAGE’s position is that Gillespie Field should move or even close, Germann said, calling the airport “a sacred cow that’s been there forever — it’s time to take another look.”

The Cajon Air Center project is currently in design. For information, visit the county website.

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