Sunday, July 12, 2015

MILL 2 FIRE: Forward progress stopped; drone disrupts fire fight

A drone temporarily halted air tankers that were fighting the Mill 2 fire north of Yucaipa on Sunday, July 12, according to U.S. Forest Service officials.

The fire burned 30 acres and is 10 percent contained, U.S. Forest Service spokesman Bob Poole said about 6 p.m. It is no longer spreading, fire officials have been saying via Twitter.

Highway 38 in the San Bernardino Mountains remains closed between Bryant Street and Lake Williams. About 5:30, the CHP said one eastbound lane was opening and traffic would be escorted through by a pilot car. It could be a few more hours before all lanes are open.

The Mill 2 fire broke out about 2:30 p.m. in Mill Creek Canyon, above the point where Bryant Street intersects with Highway 38 near the San Bernardino National Forest boundary.

Four homes on the west side of Yucaipa Ridge were evacuated as a precaution. No structures were damaged. One injury was reported, but Poole did not have details.

Seventeen engines, seven hand crews, two bulldozers, five helicopters and three air tankers were part of an aggressive response that helped put out the flames.

But the aircraft were hampered by a drone that was being flown in the area of the fire.

"We had to divert some of our aircraft," Poole said. "It was probably about 20 minutes."

Asked about what effect that had, Poole said, "It's always a big deal ... when you have a fire headed for some homes."

The fear is that an unauthorized craft could crash into a firefighting plane or helicopter, so they have to be grounded if a drone is spotted.

That has happened twice in recent weeks in the Inland area. On a crucial day in the fight against the Lake fire last month, the fleet was grounded after a drone passed 500 feet below one firefighting airplane and 500 feet above another.

The next day, planes fighting a smaller fire on the outskirts of San Bernardino were grounded because of a drone.

In response, state legislation has been proposed that would make it a crime to fly unmanned aircraft over a wildfire.

The Mill 2 fire is one of two that broke out around the same time in the mountains. Several miles up, about 2 miles south of Angelus Oaks, a vegetation fire started when a motorcycle crashed about 2:30 p.m.

According to a CHP incident log, the rider ended up 150-200 feet over the side and suffered minor injuries.

The Motorcycle fire was contained shortly after 4 p.m. and firefighters headed down to help with the Mill 2 fire.

Additionally, a brush fire scorched 70 acres in San Timoteo Canyon just south of the San Bernardino-Riverside county line on Sunday. And in a nearby but unrelated incident, firefighters responded to a fire on a train in the canyon Sunday morning. That fire did not spread to vegetation.

Read more here:  http://www.pe.com

Incident occurred July 12, 2015 at Norfolk International Airport (KORF), Virginia

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – No injuries were reported after a private aircraft made an emergency landing at Norfolk International Airport (ORF) Sunday evening.

Robert Bowen, the Deputy Executive Director with ORF confirmed that two people were aboard the Piper single-engine aircraft when the pilot reported issues with the plane’s alternator at 4:09 p.m. The plane landed safely at 4:35 p.m. and taxied under its own power to Landmark Aviation.

Bowen was not able to report where the plane departed from or was headed, but he confirmed that the plane is registered in Pittsburgh.

No other information has been released.

Source:  http://wavy.com

Beech A35 Bonanza, N8749A: Accident occurred July 11, 2015 in Mazama, Washington

NTSB Identification: WPR15FA212 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, July 11, 2015 in Mazama, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/02/2016
Aircraft: BEECH A35, registration: N8749A
Injuries: 2 Fatal, 1 Serious.

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.

A review of recorded communications between the pilot and a flight service station revealed that, before the flight, the noninstrument-rated, private pilot received two formal weather briefings. Both briefings reported that visual flight rules (VFR) conditions existed at the departure and destination airports but included forecast weather conditions along the route of flight that called for areas of mountain obscuration and precipitation. During the first briefing, the pilot disclosed that he had recently acquired a new tablet and that he was still learning how to use it. He also acknowledged that he would not be able to fly instrument flight rules if it became necessary. 

The pilot postponed his departure after the first briefing, but he and two passengers departed for the cross-country personal flight under VFR about 2 hours after the second briefing. The surviving passenger reported that, about 1 1/2 hours into the flight, the cloud coverage increased and that the pilot started to descend the airplane to stay clear of clouds; however, the airplane entered a cloud. At that time, the other passenger was using the pilot’s tablet to help him navigate the airplane, but she accidentally turned it off. Shortly after, the surviving passenger observed trees directly in front of the windshield. The pilot pulled back on the yoke to try and gain altitude, but the airplane impacted mountainous terrain at an elevation of about 5,255 ft mean sea level. 

The wreckage was confined to the impact area, and the damage was consistent with controlled flight into terrain. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. A review of satellite imagery indicated cloudy conditions over the accident location. Given the passenger’s statement, the flight likely encountered instrument meteorological conditions, and the pilot was unable to see the mountainous terrain until seconds before the collision.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The noninstrument-rated pilot’s decision to continue visual flight into instrument meteorological conditions, which resulted in his failure to maintain clearance from mountainous terrain.

On July 11, 2015, about 1600 Pacific daylight time, a Beechcraft A35, N8749A, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Mazama, Washington. The private pilot and one passenger were fatally injured. The second passenger sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to, and operated by, the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the cross-country flight, and no flight plan had been filed. However, instrument meteorological conditions were reported near the accident site. The flight originated from Red Eagle Aviation (S27), Kalispell, Montana, about 1415 mountain daylight time, with an intended destination of Lynden Airport (38W), Lynden, Washington. 

On July 11, 2015, an Alert Notification (ALNOT) was issued for the accident airplane. On July 13, 2015, a surviving passenger was located on Highway 20 near Easy Pass Head Trail, Skagit County, Washington. In a verbal statement provided to Okanogan County Sheriff's Department, she reported that she and her grandparents were flying from Montana. During the flight, the weather deteriorated, and the airplane flew into clouds. When the airplane exited the clouds, she saw a mountain in front of the airplane. The airplane impacted terrain, and a post-accident fire ensued. The surviving passenger attempted to extract the pilot and the other passenger from the wreckage, but she was unsuccessful. On July 14, 2015, the Skagit County Sheriff's Department located the wreckage about 16 miles west of Mazama.

In an interview with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC), the surviving passenger stated that the pilot, the other passenger, and she were scheduled to leave Kalispell on July 11 about 0700 mountain daylight time. However, their departure was postponed due to bad weather. Instead, the airplane departed about 1400, and was scheduled to arrive in Lynden around 1630. About 1.5 hours into the flight, the survivor observed increased cloud coverage and strong turbulence. To stay out of clouds, the pilot kept descending. After the airplane flew through a first cloud, the pilot executed a sharp left turn to avoid a collision with the mountainous terrain. He continued to fly through the mountain pass using a freeway below to navigate. Shortly after, the airplane entered a second cloud. At that time, the other passenger was using a pilot's tablet to assist with navigation, but she accidentally turned it off. Moments later, the surviving passenger observed trees directly in front of the windshield. The pilot pulled back on the yoke to try and gain altitude, but the airplane impacted terrain.

While they were flying in the clouds, the survivor stated that she was not able to see above or below the airplane. There was no direct sunlight, and she did not have a visual contact with the ground. The moisture was accumulating on the windshield and windows, and droplets of moisture were appearing to be moving backwards. After she egressed the airplane and throughout a descent down the mountain, the survivor observed that the vegetation and soil were wet. 

The survivor stated that the pilot had purchased the tablet that was used during the accident flight just a few days prior to the accident. She said that the app that was used to navigate seemed very basic, and it was only projecting an aerial view of the earth surface underneath the airplane.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION 

The pilot, age 62, held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. A third-class airman medical certificate was issued on October 14, 2013, with the following limitation: must have available glasses for near vision. During the last medical examination, the pilot reported flight experience that included 242 total flight hours and 0 hours in last 6 months. During the investigation, the pilot's logbook was requested; however, it was not provided to the IIC and, therefore, was not available for review.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The four-seat, single-engine, low-wing, retractable landing gear airplane, serial number D-2171, was manufactured in 1949. It was powered by a Continental Motors E-225-8 engine, serial number 900601-OH, rated at 225 horsepower. The airplane was also equipped with a Hartzell two bladed adjustable pitch propeller. During the investigation, the maintenance records were requested; however, they were not provided to the IIC and, therefore, they were not available for review.

METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS

A NTSB staff meteorologist prepared a factual report for the area and timeframe surrounding the accident.

The National Weather Service (NWS) Surface Analysis Chart for 1700 depicted a low pressure center to the southeast of the accident site. A trough extended south from British Columbia through central Washington to the east of the accident site and into Oregon. Station models depicted wind in the region to range from 5-15 knots with variable direction. Observations were scarce in the mountainous regions.

WSR-88D Level-II weather radar imagery from Seattle/Tacoma, Washington (ATX), located about 73 miles west-southwest of the accident site at an elevation of about 370 feet, depicted some discrete areas of light (with some moderate) reflectivity in the accident region. A loop of the radar imagery indicated these areas of reflectivity were moving from the south (generally), and appeared consistent with patterns of rain.

A North American Mesoscale (NAM) model sounding depicted that the wind between the surface and about 8,000 feet was from the west at about 5 knots. Above this level through 10,000 feet, the wind backed to a south wind, and remained relatively light. Relative humidity was greater than 90 percent between about 6,000 and 11,000 feet.

There were no publicly disseminated pilot reports made within 2 hours of the accident time below FL200 within the accident region.

The satellite imagery identified cloudy conditions over the accident location, with infrared cloud-top temperatures varying between approximately 0 degrees C and -6 degrees C in the vicinity of the accident site. When considering the NAM model sounding, 0 degrees C and -6 degrees C corresponded to heights of approximately 12,700 and 16,000 feet, respectively. These figures have not been corrected for any parallax error.

An Area Forecast issued at 1245 and directed toward the Cascade Mountains of Washington forecasted broken clouds at 9,000 feet, with clouds tops to FL220, widely scattered light rain showers, isolated thunderstorms with light rain, and cumulonimbus cloud tops to FL360.

The complete weather report is appended to this accident in the public docket.

A review of recorded communication between the pilot and the Lockheed Martin Flight Service Station (FSS) revealed that on July 11, 2015, at 0439, the pilot called to obtain a weather brief and to file a VFR flight plan for the 0700 takeoff time. The briefer informed him that there was a Convective Significant Meteorological Information (SIGMET) that was in effect from 0555 until 0955 for the northern Idaho and Sawtooth Mountain Range, and Airmen's Meteorological Information (AIRMET) Sierra valid from 0600 until 1500 for mountain obscuration by clouds and precipitation. The pilot was also advised of Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) due to forest fires and smoke in the area. During the conversation, the pilot disclosed that he had recently acquired a new tablet, and that he was still learning how to use it. He also acknowledged that he was not able to fly instrument flight rules (IFR) if needed. At 0458, the pilot decided to postpone his departure time. 

At 1210, the pilot called the FSS for a second weather brief. The brief indicated an AIRMET Sierra in effect for mountain obscuration across the Northern Cascades, Convective SIGMET outlook along the route, and an AIRMET for icing in the Western Cascades for altitude starting at 13,000 feet above ground level (agl). The briefer reported a surface drop through the Omak, Washington, as well as the off shore area, and indicated that the air mass for the day looked fairly moist and unstable. The briefer stated that an area forecast for Continental Divide and westwards indicated a ceiling broken at 7,000 feet agl, overcast at 10,000 feet agl, widely scattered light rain showers, and isolated thunderstorms with light rain. After 1400, the forecast indicated scattered light rain showers and widely scattered thunderstorms with light rain. The briefer further stated that the forecast for Idaho Panhandle indicated a ceiling broken at 7,000 feet agl, overcast at 10,000 feet agl, widely scattered thunderstorms, and light rain showers. For the area south of Cascades, the forecast indicated a ceiling broken at 10,000 feet agl, wide and scattered light rain showers, and widely scattered thunderstorms with light rain. For the second time, the briefer mentioned the AIRMET for mountain obscuration through the western Rockies and northern Idaho Panhandle, and indicated that he would not recommend flying in any sort of higher terrain if it was obscured.

The complete weather brief transcripts are appended to this accident in the public docket.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The accident site was located on the side of a mountain slope at an elevation of 5,255 mean sea level (msl). The airplane wreckage was spread along a 130-ft-long upsloping path through a forest of Subalpine fir trees on a 030-degree magnetic heading. The first point of impact was a Subalpine fir tree that was broken off about 100 feet above the ground. The airplane's left wing tip tank, a section of the left outboard wing, and the left aileron were found about 40 feet from the first impact point resting on the ground, and they were separated from the inboard wing section at the pitot tube. All of the components exhibited signatures consistent with impact damage. Pieces of cut wood, broken branches, fiberglass, and paint chips were scattered across the ground beginning at the first point of impact, and running along the accident site heading.

The left flap was located about 25 feet and 045-degree magnetic bearing from the left wing. The left flap exhibited minor impact damage. The terrain from the first point of impact to where the airplane's main wreckage came to rest was upsloping at an angle of about 40 degrees. The main wreckage, which consisted of the airplane's engine, propeller, cabin, right wing, left inboard wing, main landing gear, baggage compartment, aft fuselage, and empennage rested inverted with the nose of the airplane oriented to the southwest. These components were charred, melted, and consumed by fire. A burned area about 40 feet long and 40 feet wide surrounded the main wreckage. Several trees knocked down by the airplane were also located in the burned area. About a 20-foot-long Subalpine fir tree was resting on top on the main wreckage, exhibiting evidence of thermal damage. The right wing tip tank was located about 15 feet from the main wreckage, and exhibited extensive thermal damage.

The airplane wreckage was examined at the accident site on July 17, 2015, by representatives from Textron Aviation and Continental Motors, Inc., under the supervision of the NTSB IIC. 

Control cable continuity was established for all primary flight controls. The left aileron drive cable and the carry-through cable were impact separated from the fractured left aileron bell crank. The aileron carry-through cable was impact separated from the fractured right aileron bell crank; the right aileron drive cable remained attached to the aileron bell crank. The elevator trim actuator position was about 5 degrees up. The flaps and landing gear were found retracted. The instrument panel was destroyed by fire.

All six cylinders remained attached to their respective mountings. The engine crankshaft was rotated by hand using the propeller. Rotational continuity was established throughout the engine and valve train. Thumb compression and suction was obtained on all cylinders except numbers one and three, which exhibited impact damage. The top spark plugs were examined, and found to be consistent with worn out normal when compared to the Champion Check-A-Plug comparison card. The left magneto exhibited a signature of thermal damage, and was unable to produce sparks. The right magneto was not located during the duration of the engine examination. The engine starter motor, alternator, and oil pump remained attached, and exhibited signatures of thermal damage. The vacuum pump remained attached and intact. The plastic drive coupling was thermally damaged. The rotor and carbon veins were intact and undamaged.

The two blade propeller remained attached to the crankshaft. The propeller spinner did not display impact damage, but indicated thermal exposure. One blade exhibited aft bending, and remained attached to the propeller hub. The other blade exhibited forward bending, and was found loose in the propeller hub.

Examination of the recovered airframe, engine, and system components revealed no evidence of preimpact mechanical malfunction that would have precluded normal operation.

The complete engine examination report is appended to this accident in the public docket.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the pilot and the passenger July 16, 2015, by the Skagit County Office of the Coroner, St. Mount Vernon, Washington. The cause of death for the pilot and the passenger was determined to be "multiple blunt trauma injuries".

The FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicology on specimens from the pilot. The test did not detect a presence of carbon monoxide, volatiles, nor drugs in blood. The test for cyanide was not performed. 

Lee Bowman: http://registry.faa.gov/N8749A

NTSB Identification: WPR15FA212
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, July 11, 2015 in Mazama, WA
Aircraft: BEECH A35, registration: N8749A
Injuries: 2 Fatal, 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators 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 July 11, 2015 about 1600 Pacific daylight time, a Beechcraft A35, N8749A, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Mazama, Washington. The pilot and one passenger were fatally injured. The second passenger sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to, and operated by, the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the cross-country flight, which operated on a visual rules flight plan. However, instrument meteorological conditions were reported near the accident site. The flight originated from Red Eagle Aviation (S27), Kalispell, Montana, at about 1415 mountain standard time, with an intended destination of Lynden Airport, Lynden, Washington. 

On July 11, 2015, an Alert Notification (ALNOT) was issued for the accident aircraft. On July 13, 2015, a survivor was located on Highway 20 near Easy Pass Head Trail, Skagit County, Washington. In a verbal statement provided to Okanogan County Sheriff's Department, she reported that she was flying home from Montana with her grandparents. The airplane flew into clouds and the pilot was using a GPS to navigate with. When the airplane exited the clouds, she could see the mountain in front of the airplane. In an attempt to gain the altitude, the pilot pulled back on the yoke but he was unsuccessful. The airplane impacted terrain, and a post-accident fire ensued. The survivor attempted to extract the pilot and the other passenger from the wreckage, but was unsuccessful.

FAA  Flight Standards District Office:  FAA Spokane FSDO-13

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Chase Euerle left Tucson last week to vacation in the state of Washington, but he returned with a once-in-a-lifetime story of saving a stranded plane crash survivor.

Euerle and a friend planned to hike in the Cascade Mountains, but neither of them knew about the on-going search for a teenage girl believed to be the only survivor of a plane crash earlier in the week.

“My friend and I didn’t know how big this story was,” Euerle said.

Autumn Veatch, 16, walked alone through the wilderness for two nights until Euerle and his friend found her at a trailhead Monday. They had just begun to pack their bags for a hike when she approached them.

“She walks over and says, ‘Hey I need help, I've been walking through the woods for three days. My grandparents are dead,'” Euerle said.

He was about to write her off as an upset teenager trying to run-away from her family, but then Euerle noticed Veatch had been roughed up. He saw that her hair had been singed and her skin was discolored.

“There were burn blisters on her hand and she talked about trying to help her grandparents out of the fire,” he said.

Two bodies have been recovered from the wreckage and investigators believe they’re Veatch’s grandparents. The teen waited at the trailhead because no one had stopped to help her while she stood on the shoulder of a nearby road, according to Euerle.

He and his friend offered her food and water on the hour-long drive to the nearest town, but Euerle said she refused. She was in disbelief just to be in a car and safe.

“She just had the most daring ‘Thank you so much,'” Euerle said.

The timing of it all is what sticks with Euerle the most. If he and his friend had arrived at the trailhead any earlier or later in the day, the two paths would not have crossed. 

But they did, and now Euerle said he’ll never forget Veatch.

“Nobody makes it through stuff like that,” he said. “She's a strong girl.”

Leland and Sharon Bowman of Marion, MT, stand next to their plane in this undated photo. 


SEATTLE (AP) - The two people who died in a small plane crash that prompted a teenage survivor to hike to safety from a rugged Washington state mountainside were killed "instantaneously or quick" and were burned beyond recognition, a deputy coroner said Thursday. 

Autumn Veatch, 16, has said her step-grandparents, Leland and Sharon Bowman of Marion, Montana, were with her on the plane.

"But there was fire involved," Skagit County Deputy Coroner Matthew Sias said, "so that has hampered us from making an identification."

Officials will use dental records to confirm the identities, which could take about a week, Sias said in a phone interview with The Associated Press.

The cause of death was "blunt trauma," he said, adding "the injuries we found were consistent with them perishing very quickly."

A National Transportation Safety Board team was expected to arrive Thursday at the north-central Washington state site to investigate.

Veatch returned home to Bellingham late Tuesday.

It took her about two days to find help after the weekend crash that left her bruised and singed.

She had to make her way down a steep slope and follow a creek to a river. She spent a night on a sand bar and sipped small amounts of water.

She followed the river to a trail, and the trail to a highway where two men driving by stopped and picked her up Monday afternoon, bringing her to a general store in tiny Mazama, near the east entrance of North Cascades National Park.

Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers has said she and her relatives were flying a Beechcraft A-35 from Kalispell, Montana, to Lynden, Washington, when it struck the trees, plummeted to the ground and caught fire.

Also Wednesday, a different set of searchers located the wreckage of a small plane from Minnesota that crashed in northern Washington state with two aboard. Two bodies were recovered from that wreckage, a sheriff said.

That plane's tail registration number matches that of an aircraft reported missing from Minnesota, Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo said. Bob and Gail Nevalainen of Kabeotogama Township, Minn., were reportedly aboard the plane, which is believed to have crashed Saturday on its way to Orcas Island, Wash. It was reported missing Tuesday after relatives couldn't reach the people on board.

There was no evidence the two flights were related, said Barbara LaBoe, a Washington state Transportation Department spokeswoman.

Source:  http://www.komonews.com

Wreckage from a plane carrying Autumn Veatch and her step-grandparents was found Tuesday night, July 14, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation.

The wreckage was still smoldering and flaring up when Skagit County Sheriff’s deputies and rescue volunteers arrived Wednesday at the crash site, located about one mile north of Highway 20 in the Rainy Pass area, according to the sheriff’s office.

Two bodies were recovered from the wreckage. They are believed to be those of Leland and Sharon Bowman, of Marion, Mont., who were aboard the plane Saturday, July 11, when it crashed.

Autumn, 16, survived and hiked away from the crash site to find help. On Monday she emerged from the wilderness and found a driver who took her to Mazama Store, the first stop on the way down from Washington Pass. She told a 911 dispatcher that she was the only survivor.

After being treated for severe dehydration at Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster, Autumn arrived at her home in Bellingham on Tuesday night. Family friend Chelsey Clark said Autumn wanted to rest at home and spend time with her friends Wednesday.

The Beech A35 plane, which was piloted by Leland Bowman, 62, left Kalispell, Mont., around 1 p.m. Saturday headed for the Lynden Airport. It crossed into Washington around 2:21 p.m. and dropped off radar near Omak at 3:21 p.m. The last signal from a cellphone on the plane was detected near Omak at 3:49 p.m., according to the WSDOT.

Autumn told family and law enforcement that the plane was flying through the clouds and then crashed into the side of a mountain. The plane caught fire, and Autumn told authorities that she couldn’t save Leland or Sharon Bowman.

Another plane appears to have crashed that same day while trying to cross the Cascades. Civil Air Patrol pilots found scattered plane debris on Twin Sisters mountains at 8 a.m. Wednesday while searching for a plane due in Orcas Island on Saturday night. A Minnesota couple was likely on board, but authorities were not able to identify the aircraft or its occupants as of Wednesday afternoon, said Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo.

The plane from Minnesota left radar several hours before the Montana plane was last tracked on radar, the WSDOT said.

There were several thunderstorms in the Cascades west of Mazama that afternoon, said National Weather Service meteorologist Bob Tobin. He counted at least 50 lightning strikes from 1 to 7 p.m., accompanied by heavy rain and gusty winds. The conditions would have been rough for a small plane, though not unusual for the time of year, he said.

The National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating both crashes to try to determine what caused them.

Read more here: http://www.bellinghamherald.com


SEATTLE (AP) - A 16-year-old girl survived a small-plane crash that killed her step-grandparents in the rugged mountains of north-central Washington state and then hiked through thick forest to safety in what a rescuer called a miracle.

Searchers still are looking for the wreckage, but Autumn Veatch says Leland and Sharon Bowman of Marion, Montana, died in Saturday's crash, according to Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers, who spoke with the girl.

"She said they were flying in the clouds, and in an instant, it opened up and there was the mountain, and they crashed into the trees," Rogers told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Tuesday.

The sheriff said pilot Leland Bowman was flying too low.

"He tried to pull up, but it was too late," Rogers said.

Veatch told authorities she stayed at the crash site for a day before deciding to hike down, eventually finding a trail and following it to the trailhead on a highway near the east entrance to North Cascades National Park.

A motorist picked her up Monday afternoon and drove her 30 miles east to a general store, where employees called 911.

Veatch had no life-threatening injuries but was dehydrated and suffering from a treatable muscle tissue breakdown caused by vigorous exercise without food or water, said Scott Graham, CEO of Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster. She stayed at the hospital overnight to rest and get hydrated.

Rogers said Veatch would likely be released from the hospital Tuesday.

"It's a miracle, no question about it," Lt. Col. Jeffrey Lustick of the Civil Air Patrol told reporters, saying he has spent 30 years in search and rescue. "Moments of joy like this can be hard to find."

Her father, David Veatch of Bellingham, told reporters outside the hospital late Monday that his daughter was exhausted but doing remarkably well. She was able to joke with him about the survival shows they watched together on television, he said.

"She's just an amazing kid," David Veatch said. "There's more to her than she knows."

The Beech A-35 left Kalispell, Montana, on Saturday afternoon, heading for Lynden, Washington. The plane crossed the Idaho-Washington border about 2:20 p.m. PDT but dropped off the radar near Omak, Washington, about an hour later, officials said.

Navy helicopters searched for the wreckage until late Monday, several hours after fixed-wing planes suspended their efforts. The search would resume Tuesday, weather permitting, said Barbara LaBoe, a Washington state Transportation Department spokeswoman.

Rescuers earlier narrowed down a search area based on cellphone data and typical flight patterns. But there was no sign of the aircraft or its occupants until the teen walked out of the woods.

The girl had been "walking for a couple of days," said Rogers, the sheriff. He called her feat "pretty impressive."

Serena Lockwood, the manager at the Mazama Store, said the girl and a driver came in Monday afternoon, saying she had been in a plane crash.

"She was obviously pretty traumatized," Lockwood said.

Leland Bowman was issued a private pilot license in 2011, and the plane, manufactured in 1949, was registered to him, according to Federal Aviation Administration records.

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

SEATTLE -- The Okanogan County officials say a driver picked up a teenage girl who survived a small plane crash in a mountainous area of Washington state.

Autumn Veatch was taken to a hospital in Brewster to be checked out. Her father made the drive from Bellingham to Brewster to be reunited with his daughter.

He said she was a little banged up, a little dehydrated, and exhausted after days without sleep, hiking through the woods.

"She's just an amazing kid," said David Veatch. "She's very gifted. There's more to her than she knows. I keep trying to tell her that but she doesn't believe me, maybe now she'll understand what I see."

He said the two sometimes watched survivor shows together, and both believed the tips Autumn picked up through those shows ended up helping her.

"She definitely picked up that you're supposed to follow a stream down to civilization," he said.

The fate of her two step-grandparents, who were also on board, remains unclear.

Crews had been searching for a small plane with three aboard after it failed to reach its destination in Lynden over the weekend.

Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers said Monday afternoon the girl had been walking for days through the forest after their plane crashed. She managed to walk to the Easy Pass trailhead and onto Highway 20, where hikers in a vehicle picked her up and drove her to a store in Mazama, where employees called the sheriff's office.

"She basically related the story what happened, out walking for the past few days and got to Highway 20 and waited for the first people to come by," said Rick Leduc of the Mazama Store. "It sounds like she just followed a drainage out and just continued (along) the streams and rivers getting larger. When she came across a bridge, she knew she was pretty much where she could get help."

"It's pretty miraculous she was able to do what she did. It's pretty rugged country... probably some of the harshest country in the Cascades."

"The report that we're getting from the survivor was that at some point during the flight the clouds came in and the pilot lost visual contact with the terrain and the aircraft collided with the mountain," said Jeffery Lustick with Civil Air Patrol. "To have a survivor come through this is... it's just a miracle."

Aero Methow Rescue Services of Methow Valley medics transported the teen to Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster. Officials say she was suffering from dehydration and would be kept for observation.

Friends of Veatch said she was in good spirits and said she thanked her father for making her watch survivor shows, which helped her after the crash.

"I'll tell you this, from all of us here -- we're just impressed with her," said Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers. "She's kinda like a super hero. Just amazing us what she went through -- especially at 16. Enough for an adult - but at 16, its pretty impressive."

The small plane carrying three people left western Montana about 4 p.m. Saturday and was due in Lynden at 7 p.m. When the plane didn't arrive, authorities began an investigation.

Officials had identified those aboard as Leland and Sharon Bowman of Marion, Montana, and their 16-year-old step-granddaughter, Autumn Veatch of Bellingham, Washington.

Sheriff Rogers said Autumn told his deputies her step-grandparents did not survive the crash.

David Veatch says that's been especially hard on his daughter.

"These people were really playing the part of grandparents to her, and that's really hitting her hard. She's had to deal with a lot of loss," he said.

Search crews were using the last found cell signal – about 4 p.m. Saturday near Omak – to help narrow the search in Skagit, Whatcom, Chelan and Okanogan counties in northern Washington.

Story, comments, video and photos:  http://www.king5.com


A 16-year-old girl who was one of three passengers in a small private plane that crashed in the North Cascades on Saturday (July 11) walked out to civilization Monday afternoon, Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers confirmed.

Autumn Veatch, of Bellingham, was picked up by a motorist who saw her by the side of Highway 20 near the Easy Pass trailhead on Monday afternoon, Rogers said. The motorist took Veatch to the Mazama Store and authorities were notified, Rogers said. Veatch was subsequently transported to Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster with what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries suffered in the plane crash, the sheriff said.

Veatch was brought to the Mazama Store at about 2:45 p.m., according to store owner Rick LeDuc.

A store employee asked CB Thomas, who operates the Goat’s Beard Mountain Supplies store next to the Mazama Store, to help because he is trained as a paramedic. Mazama Store employees called 911.

The girl had no “life-threatening injuries” but was “distraught,” Thomas said. “She was shaking and having a hard time describing what happened to her.” She said she had been walking for three days and hadn’t eaten.

“She had burns to her hands and was obviously scraped and bruised,” Thomas said, although it wasn’t clear if the scrapes and bruises were from the plane crash or her hike out.

The girl was hungry and the store employees gave her a sandwich, and helped her make a phone call to her mother.

Veatch said she had followed a creek from the crash site until she encountered a trail, and followed the trail to the highway, according to Rogers.

 Thomas said U.S. Forest Service law enforcement officer Dave Graves arrived at the store and the girl was “able to identify a creek she followed and its relationship to the Easy Pass Trailhead.” Graves drew a map based on her description.

Aero Methow Rescue Service arrived and determined Veatch was stable, without life-threatening injuries. She was placed on a stretcher and transported by ambulance.

LeDuc commented that the Mazama Store is often the first place to learn of accidents or other problems, such as avalanches, in the North Cascades because it is the first stop on the way down from Washington Pass.

Veatch was a passenger with her step-grandparents, Leland Bowman, 62, and his wife, Sharon, 63, both of Marion, Montana. Their conditions were not known.

The plane, piloted by Leland Bowman, left Kalispell at about 1 p.m. Saturday and was expected to arrive in Lynden, Washington, near the Canadian border in Whatcom County, at 4:05 p.m. It dropped off radar near Omak at around 3:21 p.m. and the last cell phone signal was at about 3:49 p.m., according to the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT).

The search for the plane began Saturday and by Monday had been narrowed to areas around Mazama, Lost River Airport and Rainy Pass. WSDOT said in a blog posting that Civil Air Patrol officials, who are assisting in the search, used cell phone data to help narrow the search parameters. Earlier Monday, four search planes were launched from Bellingham. A fifth plane was launched from Spokane.

WSDOT said search crews were still looking for the plane Monday afternoon.

The missing plane’s tail number is N8749A. The plane is white and red Beech 35, WSDOT said.

Don Fitzpatrick, a pilot from Mazama, gave up an attempt to fly over the North Cascades from western Washington Saturday afternoon, shortly before Leland Bowman and his two passengers were attempting the same trip from the east. “It was socked in along the crest of the Cascades, thick as soup,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick, experienced in the flight across the mountains, typically navigates by the North Cascades Highway, he said. But “the weather was marginal” on his flight back to the Methow Saturday afternoon, and it took him two hours to make a one-hour flight, he said. He and a passenger took off in his single-engine Maule from Lynden, Washington around 1 p.m., and by the time they reached Marblemount “there were no holes, we couldn’t get through,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick flew south, gave up an attempt to fly over Stevens Pass, and ended up crossing the mountains at Snoqualmie Pass “between the layers,” landing in Twisp around 3 p.m., he said. Thunderstorms late Saturday afternoon – about the time Bowman’s Beech 35 dropped off the radar near Omak – “spell trouble for airplanes,” Fitzpatrick said.

http://methowvalleynews.com



An employee at a store in Mazama said paramedics picked up a teenage girl who claimed she was in a plane crash as crews continue to search for a missing plane that carried three members of a family.

The plane departed from Kalispell, Montana, and was expected to land at Lynden Airport around 4 p.m. Saturday, July 11, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation.

The three family members on board included the pilot Leland Bowman, 62, his wife Sharon, 63, both from Montana, and their step-grandchild Autumn Veatch, 16, of Bellingham.

Henry Clay Tennis, an employee at Mazama Store in Okanogan County, said a girl was brought in Monday afternoon and said she had been in a plane crash. Tennis said paramedics put her on a stretcher and took her to the hospital.

The Okanagan Sheriff’s Department could not immediately be reached Monday afternoon.

The missing plane is a 1949 Beech A35 aircraft registered to Lee Bowman. It crossed into Washington around 2:21 p.m. Saturday and dropped off radar near Omak at 3:21 p.m. The last signal from an occupant’s cellphone was detected near Omak at 3:49 p.m., said the Department of Transportation.

Authorities were contacted late Saturday night by concerned family members and the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of Transportation said.

The first search plane launched at 6 a.m. Sunday and continued until 8:30 p.m. Poor weather delayed the search Monday morning, but search planes were expected to be on scene by noon, Jerwa said.

Aerial crews have centered their search on an area near Rainy Pass and the unincorporated town of Mazama, said Civil Air Patrol spokesman Jessica Jerwa. The plane is described as a white and red Beech 35 aircraft.

There was no indication from the pilot that there had been any issues on the flight, Jerwa said. As of Monday morning, no emergency signals had been detected from the plane.

Five planes will be used for the search. Ground search crews may be sent if a targeted location is determined, according to the Department of Transportation.

The Civil Air Patrol, Washington Air Search and Rescue and the U.S. Air Force Rescue Coordination Center are assisting the Department of Transportation with the search. An incident command center has been set up in Bellingham, near the airport.

http://www.bellinghamherald.com



BELLINGHAM, Wash. — The search resumed Monday morning for the small private plane that departed Kalispell Saturday and remains missing with three passengers onboard, according to the Washington Department of Transportation. 

Aircraft resumed the search in a rugged, mountainous area south of Mount Baker and northeast of Seattle.  The plane was carrying Leland Bowman, 62, and Sharon Bowman, 63, both of Marion, and their step-granddaughter Autumn Veatch, 16, of Bellingham, Washington.

The plane left Kalispell and the last cell phone signal that authorities tracked was just before 4 p.m. Pacific Time, about three hours after the plane took off, according to Washington officials. The plane never landed in its destination that night in Lynden, Washington.

Air crews on Sunday searched the area listening for emergency locator beacon signals as well as conducting visual searches. Emergency beacons are required on all planes. Ground search crews are on standby and will be sent in if something is detected from the air.

The first day’s search ended Sunday at about 8 p.m. due to lack of light. Aerial searches resumed at 8 a.m.

Initial report: Sunday, 8 p.m.

Crews are searching for a small, private plane that didn’t reach its destination in Lynden, Washington, on Saturday, the Washington State Department of Transportation said.

The plane carrying three people, including the pilot, left western Montana about 4 p.m. Saturday and was due in Lynden around 7 p.m. Those on the plane were identified by the Department of Transportation as Leland Bowman, 62, and Sharon Bowman, 63, both of Marion, Montana, and their step-granddaughter Autumn Veatch, 16, of Bellingham, Washington.


The last phone signal from one of the plane’s occupants was detected around 11 p.m. in an area near Omak, Washington. State officials say the search is centered south of Mount Maker.

The plane is described as a white and red Beech 35 aircraft.

Volunteers from the Civil Air Patrol and Washington Air Search and Rescue are assisting Department of Transportation Aviation Emergency Services with the search.

OLYMPA, WA -    The search for a small plane that left the Flathead over the weekend but never made it to its final destination has resumed.

The Washington State Department of Transportation reports the search for plane owner and pilot Leland Bowman, 62, and his wife Sharon, 63 of Marion and their step-granddaughter Autumn Veatch, 16, of Bellingham, Washington was suspended on Sunday evening.

The plane aircraft left Kalispel on Saturday and the last cell phone signal tracked was just before 4 p.m. Pacific Time, about three hours after the plane took off. The aircraft is described as a white and red Beech 35 aircraft.

The cell signals are helping to develop search areas, according to a news release. The search is centering south of Mount Baker, along the intended flight plan. 

Air crews searched the area listening for emergency locator beacon signals as well as conducting visual searches and ground search crews are on standby and will be sent in if something is detected from the air.

The first search planes left Spokane at 6 a.m. Sunday, followed by others from western Washington at 9 a.m. Law enforcement also checked all airports along the flight plan early Sunday morning, but did not locate the plane.

Volunteers from the Civil Air Patrol and Washington Air Search and Rescue as well as the U.S. Air Force Rescue Coordination Center are assisting WSDOT Aviation Emergency Services with the search. An incident command has been set up in Bellingham, near the airport.

(original story)

Authorities in Washington state are searching for a small plane that never reached its destination on Saturday.

The people onboard the overdue plan have been identified by family as Leland Bowman, 62, and Sharon Bowman, 63 both of Marion and their step-granddaughter Autumn Veach, 16, of Bellingham, Washington. 

The Washington State Department of Transportation reports the private plane left from Flathead County on Saturday afternoon and was due in Lynden, Washington at 7 p.m. (PST).

When the plane did not arrive, the Federal Aviation Administration and family members notified authorities.

The last cell phone signal from one of the plane’s occupants was detected at about 11:30 p.m. in an area near Omak. The search is centering south of Mount Baker, along the intended flight plan. The plane is described as a white and red Beech 35 aircraft.

Volunteers from the Civil Air Patrol and Washington Air Search and Rescue as well as the U.S. Air Force Rescue Coordination Center are assisting WSDOT Aviation Emergency Services with the search. An incident command has been set up in Bellingham, near the airport.

Upper Limit Aviation talks tanks with Parowan, Utah

PAROWAN – Upper Limit Aviation officials said they are in talks with the city of Parowan over the possibility of leasing fuel tanks at the Parowan Airport to store excess fuel.

The growth of operations for ULA in Cedar City has led to the need for more fuel and storage, said Scott Jolley, ULA’s director of community and business relations.

“In our efforts in Cedar City with all of our operations and the items that we deal with, (we are pushing) to be more efficient, we are in the process of self-fueling on the airfield in Cedar City and as we have looked at the options available to us, we wanted to open a discussion with Parowan to look at leasing the fuel tanks on the Parowan Airport,” Jolley said.

Jolley said the aviation company would simply store fuel in Parowan and pick it up via trucks and haul it to Cedar City Airport to refuel aircraft there.

Jolley said ULA would pick fuel up between flight blocks, which are launched every two and a half hours.

“That would give our fuel crew ample time to drive to Parowan to fill the mobile refuelers and get back to Cedar and fill the aircraft,” Jolley said. “The way it would work to protect the Parowan airport is that we would lease the tanks and meter all of the fuel that Parowan Airport needs into their mobile refuelers and sell that fuel back to Parowan at whatever our invoice cost is.”

Jolley said ULA anticipates the volume of fuel consumed by the aviation firm would help bring Parowan City’s fuel costs down.

“We can’t come up with a downside here,” Parowan Mayor Don Landes said regarding a potential partnership with ULA. “It looks like a win-win for the city.”

Parowan Councilman Ben Johnson expressed concern with the current condition of the tanks.

“Our tanks are not in the greatest shape right now,” he said. “But that could be a good thing if the fuel is turned over. A lot of people don’t come here because our fuel isn’t recycled very often. So there is two sides to that coin. This does, however, give us an opportunity to put some money aside and improve the tanks.”

“This is an avenue for us to reduce our fuel costs,” Johnson continued. “Hopefully, it could help us attract more planes to our airport.”

City officials will take the next two weeks to finalize the specifics of a possible lease agreement and present it to the City Council for a vote on July 23.

Source:  http://www.thespectrum.com


Accident occurred July 12, 2015 near Cindy Guntly Memorial Airport (62C) , Racine County, Wisconsin

TOWN OF NORWAY — A 61-year-old South Milwaukee man was reported to be in stable condition at Froedtert Hospital Sunday after apparently being hit with a helicopter rotor following a crash near Cindy Guntly Memorial Airport.

According to a press release from the Racine County Sheriff’s Office, deputies and Wind Lake Fire Company personnel were dispatched at 8:24 a.m. to the small landing strip located at 22031 6 Mile Road for a report of a helicopter crash.

When the first deputy arrived on scene, he was advised the pilot was conscious and alert but had sustained a laceration on the back of his head, the release stated. The pilot was later transported to Froedtert Hospital, the regional trauma center in Wauwatosa, where he was being treated for non-life-threatening injuries. According to the release, the pilot, whose name was not released, was listed in stable condition.

According to the Sheriff’s Office, the pilot was operating a “Mosquito” helicopter, a small, one-passenger aircraft that is considered experimental based on its small size. According to a witness on the ground, the pilot was hovering about 15 feet above ground when the craft lost lift and dropped to the ground, landing in a cornfield. The witness said he saw the pilot exit the aircraft and walk towards the back and it appeared he sustained a blow to the head from the rear rotor.

The aircraft sustained very little damage, according to the release, and the exact cause of the crash is unknown at this time. According to the Sheriff’s Office, officials from the FAA’s Milwaukee field office were contacted and responded to the accident. The investigation was reported to be ongoing as of Sunday afternoon.

Source:  http://journaltimes.com


Federal Aviation Administration team to test aviation standards

Officials from the United States' Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will arrive in Bangkok today to review Thailand's air safety progress and compliance with international standards.

The FAA's air safety experts under an International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) program are scheduled to meet with officials from the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and major airlines, including Thai Airways International.

It will be the FAA's first visit to Thailand since the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) visited in January to hold extensive tests before declaring in February that Thailand did not meet with the ICAO's Significant Safety Concern (SSC) safety standards.

Parichat Kotcharat, director-general of DCA, and her team will meet with the FAA experts, said Transport Minister ACM Prajin Juntong. The Thai officials will provide the latest information and progress of aviation procurement to FAA and IASA officials. The US team is expected to oversee and examine a revised aviation manual and overall action plans being prepared.

"FAA will be in the country until Friday. The DCA and its team have already met twice to prepare for the arrival of the FAA and IASA," said Prajin.

Prajin confessed that certifying airline's licenses was one of the major issues that led the country having safety problems and the problems would be solved in time. According to a source at DCA, the visit of the FAA officials will help enhance the entire aviation industry, particularly safety standards. It will also help airlines registered in Thailand have a chance to learn oversights and mistakes.

"Without the arrival of the ICAO and FAA team, our aviation problem would take longer time to ease although we have set a dateline by final quarter this year," the same source said.

Charamporn Jotikasthira, president of Thai Airways International, said he would meet with FAA and IASA on Thursday. However, no audit of the national airline is scheduled.

"THAI has no problem with safety standards and we are able to operate anywhere," said Charamporn. He added the airline would continue its cost-cutting measures along with initiating new strategies to return to profit.

Under the IASA program, the FAA determines the fitness of air carriers in countries that that operate, or seek to operate, in the US, or code share with a US air carrier, and make sure they comply with safety standards established by ICAO.

The IASA program is administered by the FAA Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety (AVS), Flight Standards Service (AFS), International Programs and Policy Division (AFS-50).

According to the ICAO, the IASA program focuses on a country's ability, not the ability of individual air carriers, to adhere to international aviation safety standards and recommended practices contained in Annex 1 (Personnel Licensing), Annex 6 (Operation of Aircraft), and Annex 8 (Airworthiness of Aircraft) to the International Convention on Civil Aviation "Chicago Convention".

IASA assessments determine compliance with these international standards by focusing on the eight critical elements of an effective aviation safety oversight authority specified in ICAO Document 9734, Safety Oversight Manual.

Those eight critical elements are primary aviation legislation; specific operating regulations; state civil aviation system and safety oversight functions; technical personnel qualification and training; technical guidance, tools and the provision of safety critical information; licensing, certification, authorization and approval obligations; surveillance obligations; and resolution of safety concerns.

Source:  http://www.nationmultimedia.com

Forest Service adds 'next generation airtanker' to fleet



The U.S. Forest Service has added a “next generation airtanker” to their fleet of firefighting aircraft, with the new plane cleared as of Friday to take on local wildfires.

Announced in a press release from the Forest Service, Tanker 118, as the new plane has been designated, was acquired from the U.S. Coast Guard as part of a federal program transferring seven Lockheed HC-130Hs to the Forest Service. Tanker 118 was the first of the seven, with its acquisition made possible through the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act.

“The Coast Guard is very happy with the outstanding cooperation we have experienced with the Forest Service in establishing this first-of-its-kind program for our service,” said Cmdr. Michael Frawley, chief of Aeronautical Engineering, Coast Guard Headquarters. “We look forward to a strong partnership that supports the Forest Service in achieving safe and effective wildfire suppression missions in the coming years.”

Tanker 118 is currently based at Forest Service Air Station McClellan in Sacramento, Calif., where it spent June receiving maintenance and the installation and testing of its modular airborne firefighting system, which allows it to deploy fire suppressant on wildfires.
 

The release also stated Tanker 118 is expected to remain at the base for around two years while a “systematic search for a permanent base of operations” for it and its six companions is under way.

The release added the Forest Service and the Coast Guard will jointly own Tanker 118 and share in its maintenance and management.

Tanker 118 brings the total of Forest Service airtankers available full-time for wildfire suppression this fire season to 22, according to the release. The next HC-130H is expected to be transferred to Sacramento this October, where it is will serve as a training aircraft. All seven are expected to be transferred by 2019.

Source:  http://www.heraldandnews.com

Bergen County, New Jersey: Man Laundered Used Jet Engine Parts --U.S. Attorney

Gideon Vaisman, 75, of Edgewater, was charged with several counts of wire fraud and mail fraud. He allegedly ran the scheme for 19 years.

A Bergen County man was indicted on 23 charges he laundered used jet engine parts for nearly 20 years, didn’t pay taxes on the money he received, and defrauded the Federal Aviation Administration, authorities said.

A federal grand jury indicted Gideon Vaisman, 75, of Edgewater, on several counts of wire fraud, mail fraud, and filing false tax returns, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Vaisman bought and sold aircraft parts through his Ridgefield-based businesses: Integrated Technology Corp. Tara Technology from 1990 through 2009.

Vaisaman purchased ”vital engine parts” called blades and vanes from scrap metal dealers. He later had Carmine Coviello, Tara Technology’s general manager, use his aircraft parts and broker company, Shelby Enterprises, to sand and file the parts in order to hide the fact that the parts were scrap, the indictment states. An FAA repair station even rejected some of the parts for repair.

FAA regulations state that only FAA-certified repair stations or mechanics perform such work on aircraft parts.

Vaisman, Coviello, and others conducted sham sales, which were conducted only on paper, of the blades and vans to Integrated Technology and Tara Aviation Ltd., an aircraft parts broker and sellers in the United Kingdom, Fishman said. Vaisman controlled and financed Tara Aviation.

Coviello created fraudulent paperwork certifying the parts were not subjected to “excessive stress and heat” or that they were deemed “usable” by an FAA repair station.

Vaisman, Coviello, and another conspirator used the paperwork to sell the parts to aircraft, brokers, airlines, and others on behalf of Tara Aviation.

The indictment also alleges that Vaisman failed to report more than $14.2 million in net income from Tara Aviation on his personal tax returns and those of Tara Technology.

Vaisman was charged with nine counts of mail fraud, four counts of wire fraud, eight counts of filing false tax returns, and one count each of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud involving aircraft parts, Fishman said. He was arrested in May 2013.

Vaisman could spend the rest of his life in prison. The mail and wire fraud conspiracy and related charges each carry a maximum terms of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Coviello previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud for his role in the scheme. He is scheduled to be sentenced in September.

Source:  https://patch.com

Cessna 210-5A Centurion, N315EC: Accident occurred July 12, 2015 in Stafford Township, Ocean County, New Jersey

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA263
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 12, 2015 in Stafford Twp, NJ
Aircraft: CESSNA 210 5A(205A), registration: N315EC
Injuries: 1 Minor, 4 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 July 12, 2015, about 1010 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 210-5A, N315EC, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a total loss of engine power during climbout from Eagles Nest Airport (31E), West Creek, New Jersey. The commercial pilot and 3 passengers were not injured, and 1 passenger received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the skydiving flight. The airplane was owned by Seasky27 Productions LLC and operated by Skydive East Coast under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the pilot, the accident flight was the second flight of the morning. The airplane was performing "normally," just as it had performed during the first flight. During climbout, he noted the cylinder head temperatures were in the "normal" range. About 4,000 feet above mean sea level, the engine experienced a total loss of power, and about 1 minute later the propeller ceased windmilling. He attempted to restart the engine; however, was unsuccessful and elected to perform an off-airport landing to a nearby highway. During the landing rollout, and to avoid impacting automobile traffic on the highway, the pilot guided the airplane onto the median, impacting several road signs with the wings and horizontal stabilizer.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration inspector and local police photographs, the airplane came to rest upright in the median of a divided highway. The airplane was recovered to the operator's hangar and examination of the airplane revealed damage to both wings. Exterior examination of the engine did not reveal any abnormalities, and the engine was rotated by hand, utilizing the propeller. Further examination revealed that the crankshaft was not rotating at the rear accessory gears, and no motion was observed on the piston heads for Cylinders No. 1 and 2; however, motion was observed on all other cylinder pistons during the manual rotation of the propeller.

According to a New Jersey Department of Transportation traffic camera video, the airplane touched down on a momentarily vacant stretch of the westbound lanes of the highway, veered toward the left, and came to rest in the median.

The engine was retained for further examination.

SEASKY27 PRODUCTIONS LLC: http://registry.faa.gov/N315EC

 





A small plane made an emergency landing on Route 72 near the Home Depot store this morning, according to Stafford Township police and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department.

Stafford Police responded to the area of Route 72 and Route 9 at 10:13 a.m. 

“The initial investigation suggests that the small single engine plane, carrying students from the Skydive East Coast Sky Diving School, lost power, forcing the pilot to make an emergency landing on the grass median between the east and westbound lanes of Route 72,” Stafford Officer Christopher Fritz said.

One sky dive instructor was treated for a small cut on his arm, but there were no other injuries, he said.

There were four passengers and the pilot on board, Fritz said.

Officers at the scene closed the left lanes on Route 72 in both directions for approximately 90 minutes while the scene remained under investigation. No other vehicles were involved, Fritz said.

The investigation will be turned over to Federal Aviation Administration for further investigation, he said.

“Kudos to the pilot. ...Sunday traffic on 72 and a no injury landing....pretty much textbook,” Janine Seeley wrote on the Stafford Township Police Department Facebook page.

“It happened right in front of me and I have to say way to go to the pilot!” Leah Faith Scalie wrote on the department’s Facebook page. ” Calm, cool, and collective and was able to land safely! Glad everyone was ok!”

Route 72 is open, police said.

Read more:  http://patch.com

Stafford Township Police Department:  https://www.facebook.com



STAFFORD TOWNSHIP — A plane filled with thrill-seeking skydivers had their trips unexpectedly shortened when their plane made an emergency landing on Route 72 in Stafford Township, police said.

Township police said that the single-engine Cessna, from the Skydive East Coast school, made the bumpy but safe landing just outside a Home Depot on Sunday morning.

One instructor suffered a small cut on his arm, police said, but nobody else was hurt.    

The emergency was caused by a loss of power, according to police.

Read more: http://www.nj.com





A skydiving school plane landed on the main road to a Jersey Shore town Sunday morning to the surprise of people going about their day on the shore.

 The incident left one instructor hurt.

The small aircraft from Skydive East Coast skydiving school in nearby West Creek landed safely in the median along Barnegat Road (New Jersey Route 72) near Main Street (U.S. Route 9) in Stafford Township, New Jersey shortly before 10:15 a.m., said Stafford Township Police.   The road is the main route to and from Long Beach Island.

A worker at the nearby Home Depot said that it appeared the single-engine, four-seater, white-and-blue aircraft was unscathed on the grassy median.


The plane was carrying students from Skydive East Coast when it lost power forcing the pilot to make an emergency landing, said police.   
A skydiving instructor suffered a minor cut on his arm.

Officers closed the left lanes of traffic in both directions as they investigated the incident.    
After about 90 minutes, Stafford police tweeted a photo showing the fixed-wing Cessna pulled off the roadway and into a nearby parking lot.   The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the incident.

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





STAFFORD – A small airplane on a skydiving trip made an emergency landing on Route 72 late Sunday morning after suddenly losing power. The plane left the Skydive East Coast skydiving school Eagles Nest Airport in Eagleswood on a routine trip with a pilot, instructor and three students, Stafford Police Sgt. Kenneth Schiattarella said. 

Somewhere over Stafford, the pilot reported a loss of power and forced an emergency landing onto the Route 72 median, Schiattarella said.

The FAA notified Ocean County authorities after losing contact with the airplane.

The plane was not high enough for the instructor and students to jump with a parachute, Schiattarella said. The only injury suffered was a small cut on the skydive instructor's arm, Officer Christopher Fritz said.

One lane of eastbound and westbound traffic on Route 72, the only thoroughfare to Long Beach Island, was closed for about 90 minutes. Police were able to move the plane to a parking lot on West Road, Schiattarella said.

The investigation will be turned over to Federal Aviation Administration, Fritz said.

Read more:  http://www.app.com