Thursday, July 23, 2015

Charlotte attorney accused of disrupting international flight

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A flight from Charlotte to London was forced to run around and make an emergency landing in Philadelphia thanks to a reportedly drunk and abusive passenger.

NBC Charlotte has learned that the passenger in question is an attorney with a prominent Charlotte law firm.

Officials say Sarah Buffett admitted to drinking at least three glasses of wine and taking a prescription pill for her insomnia. Reading through the affidavit, NBC Charlotte has learned more about what allegedly happened on the plane.

According to the affidavit, Buffett needed to be physically restrained by another passenger.

"After takeoff, Buffett had become physically aggressive, and was damaging her seat and the area around her seat. She attempted to smash the aircraft window with the entertainment system remote and was verbally threatening. She got out of her seat and was acting in a menacing manner in front of the cockpit door. At that time it was determined by the flight crew she needed to be restrained and the pilot decided to divert the flight to Philadelphia. A passenger had to help physically restrain Buffett, and tape was wrapped around her lower legs."

"I'm out of the country on business until July 29th," says Buffett's work phone voice messaging system. After investigation, NBC Charlotte discovered that Buffett is a partner at Nelson, Mullins, Riley, & Scarborough, LLP. The firm issued a statement saying Buffett has been suspended.

"…The firm does have an expectation of personal responsibility on the part of all of our partners."

Passengers onboard Buffett's flight aren't happy about the inconvenience she allegedly caused. #THANKSSARAHBUFFETT can be found on Twitter, along with posted complaints from several people.

Jane Genova says Buffett should've known the risks associated with her use of prescription medication.

"She is an educated woman, a lawyer, a partner at a major law firm. She should know not to mix alcohol with a sleeping pill, she could've died," said Genova.

Buffett is facing charges for interfering with the crew. She told the FBI she didn't remember the outburst as witnesses described.

Source: http://www.wcnc.com

Dozens of planes touch ground on Cleveland farm



CLEVELAND – When Cleveland farmer Kurt Klessig looked out over his cow pasture Wednesday afternoon, it appeared as though his 500 cows had sprouted wings. Upon closer look, these were not steers, but rather more than three dozen Super Cub airplanes.

A group of 37 pilots and their families landed their planes in the middle of a cow pasture at Cleveland’s Saxon Homestead Farm Wednesday, July 22, as part of the annual New Holstein Fly-In, a weeklong aviation event hosted by SuperCub.org for pilots interested in Super Cub airplanes.

A Super Cub is a popular style of plane manufactured by Piper from 1939 until the 1980s.

“I like to use the term ‘organized foolishness’ to describe it,” said Jeff Russell, one of the event’s organizers. “It’s just what we care to do.”

The New Holstein Fly-In has taken place every year for the past 15 years at the New Holstein Municipal Airport. The annual event draws in Super Cub pilots from more than a dozen states who fly to New Holstein and camp for a week with their families under the wings of their planes.

“We’re going to camp for the week, we’re going to have fun together, we’ll probably do some flying around together, and just have a good time,” Russell said.

Outside of time spent in New Holstein, the pilots spend three days of the week participating in “fly-outs,” or short trips to attractions throughout Wisconsin. Last year, Russell came up with an idea to include Saxon Homestead Farm on the list of destinations.

“I had been coming to the event for a number of years, and I know they’re always looking for new and interesting places to do their fly-outs,” Russell said. “And the previous fall, Robert (Klessig, one of the farm’s owners) hosted a Wisconsin Waterfowl Association banquet, and I flew up and landed my plane in the alfalfa field on the farm and thought this would be kind of a neat place. Then, I made a few suggestions, and lo and behold, Robert was excited to have us.”

With these new plans in place, the team of pilots visited the farm during last summer’s fly-in, and because of overwhelming demand, a fly-out to the farm was organized once again for this year’s event.

This year, the Klessig family organized a lunch and get-together in their barn for the pilots and their families, as well as their own friends and neighbors.

Kurt Klessig, one of the owners of Saxon Homestead Farm, said the family has been happy to host a fly-out for the pilots the past two years.

“As farmers, we love the personalities of the pilots and their families,” Klessig said. “They’re very representative of a free spirit in America, and there’s something really unique about the personalities of the people who own these planes. We love that. So for us, it’s really easy to host this group of people.”

Though the fly-in always takes place the same week as EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, the two events are not connected. However, Russell said AirVenture plays a strong role in choosing the timing and location of the fly-in.

“It’s not part of it, but Steve (Johnson, the creator of SuperCub.org) purposefully organizes the event simultaneous to it,” Russell said. “For people in our group who want to go over to Oshkosh, which is a phenomenal event, there’s a bus that goes over there every day, then brings you back again.”

Russell said he enjoys the event each year as a way to connect with his fellow pilots and share his love for flying.

“It’s really not much different than people who might want to get together if they’re owners of Harleys and they want to go on a big Harley ride together, and they enjoy being together,” Russell said. “It’s all the same thing, it just happens to be that we’re passionate about flying.”

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


Dornier 228 black box sent to US to retrieve data • The Dornier aircraft crashed off the coast of Tamil Nadu on June 8 killing three Coast Guard personnel onboard

The Coast Guard has sent the “severely damaged” black box of the Dornier aircraft, which crashed off the coast of Tamil Nadu on June 8, to the United States to retrieve data.

The decision was taken after Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) informed the Board of Inquiry — constituted to look into incident — that they had limitations in retrieving the data due to severity of damage caused to the Flight Data Recorder (black box).

The damage to the black box also indicates the magnitude of the impact the Dornier may have suffered before crashing into Indian Ocean, killing three Coast Guard personnel onboard. The wreckage of the aircraft was located on July 14 — nearly 36 days later — at a depth of 996 metres, the deepest in the history of accidents in India, according to the Coast Guard.

"We have sent the Flight Data Recorder (FDR) to the original equipment manufacturer in US. This was done after HAL officials told us that there was a possibility of losing the data due to the high degree of damage caused to the FDR. We are expecting a report from the US in another 10 days after which the Board of Inquiry will further analyze the reason behind the accident,” a Coast Guard official told The Indian Express.

HAL, being the licensed manufacturer of Dornier Do 228, is the agency to decode FDR after such accidents.

According to HAL sources, they had recovered the data from the Navy Dornier that crashed in the Arabian Sea off the coast of Goa in March with the help of personnel from original equipment manufacturer.

 However, in the present case, the FDR has been sent to the US. “It happens rarely when there is exceptional damage to the FDR.

Rather than losing the data, it is safe if the original equipment manufacturer extracts the same.

It is a routine practice in such cases to involve the original equipment manufacturer,” a HAL official said. 

The HAL, meanwhile, is decoding the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) of the same aircraft, sources added.

The “milking” — as they term the process — of the Flight Data Recorder (FDR) is likely to provide clues to the three-member Board of Inquiry which is carrying out the investigation into the crash. 

Crucial factors such as the engine condition, temperature, impact on the aircraft as well as speed and coordinates recorded by the FDR would help the Board of Inquiry analyze the cause of the accident and initiate corrective actions to avoid future mishaps in case of a “probable repetitive snag”.

The remains of the deceased crew members have been sent to Central Forensic Research Laboratory in Chennai to obtain further clues, officials added.

 Source: http://indianexpress.com

Mooney M20J-201, Air McRoyal LLC, N9201R: Fatal accident occurred August 18, 2013 in Kansas City, Missouri

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

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

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

NTSB Identification: CEN13FA496
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 18, 2013 in Kansas City, MO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/30/2014
Aircraft: MOONEY M20J, registration: N9201R
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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

The airplane experienced a total loss of engine power during takeoff from a runway that had a usable length of 6,827 feet; however, the pilot initiated the takeoff from a taxiway intersection, which left only about 5,313 feet of runway remaining. After the loss of engine power, the airplane descended to about 10 feet above ground level (agl) with the landing gear retracted; about half of the runway length remained. Engine power was restored, and the airplane subsequently climbed to between about 300 and 400 agl. The engine again lost power, and the airplane subsequently stalled and impacted a field. The landing gear remained retracted. Typically, the landing gear should be retracted after liftoff when the airplane has reached an altitude where, in the event of an engine failure or other emergency requiring an aborted takeoff, the airplane could no longer be landed on the runway.


The airplane arrived at the departure airport 3 days before the accident and was parked on the ramp. It rained 1.22 inches during the 3 days the airplane was parked on the ramp. Examination of the airplane revealed the presence of water in the fuel diaphragm and fuel servo. No evidence of fuel contamination in the fuel pumps was found, and no reports of fuel contamination or engine power loss of airplanes that had been refueled from the fuel pumps before and after the accident were made.


Examination of the fuel filler caps revealed that the cap components were in place and that both caps were in place and secure. When water was poured onto the fuel caps when they were placed and secured back into position, they exhibited leakage into the fuel tank; however, the extent of deformation around the filler neck due to accident damage was unknown. During the most recent annual inspection, it was noted that the fuel cap O-rings were replaced because of water contamination of the fuel system. No record was found indicating that maintenance personnel pressurized the fuel tanks to check for fuel cap leakage in accordance with the airplane manufacturer’s maintenance instructions. No internal obstruction was noted in the fuel system that would have precluded the pilot from detecting water in the system while sumping it during the preflight inspection.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot’s improper decision to attempt continued flight after a momentary loss of engine power with usable runway remaining. Contributing to the accident were the pilot’s premature retraction of the landing gear and the loss of engine power due to fuel system water contamination from precipitation, which resulted from maintenance personnel’s failure to comply with the manufacturer’s maintenance instructions and the pilot’s failure to detect fuel contamination during the preflight inspection.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On August 18, 2013, about 1448 central daylight time, a Mooney M20J, N9201R, descended and impacted terrain after takeoff from Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport (MKC), Kansas City, Missouri. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the wings and fuselage. The private pilot and a passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to Air McRoyal, LLC and operated by the pilot under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight that was not operating on a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The flight was originating at the time of the accident and was en route to Youngstown, Ohio.

On August 15, 2013, the personal flight originated from Youngstown, Ohio and arrived at MKC. The airplane was parked on a ramp in front of a fixed base operator (FBO) at MKC. The president and owner of a general aviation consultant, sales, and refurbishment firm, stated that a text message from the pilot was received on August 16, 2013. The provided text message stated:

"Hey… . Just an update. ... Landed kmkc yesterday from kyng. Ran really well. Total trip time was 4:30. Not too bad. Better than spending 8 hrs in airports."

On the day of the accident, the airplane was taxied from the ramp to the airport self-serve fuel pump and 25.25 gallons of 100 low lead aviation fuel was obtained.

An airplane mechanic at the FBO stated that he heard the airplane engine run-up and takeoff. The run-up was "short" and was "less than a minute." He did not hear any engine power hesitations during the run-up, just a "quick" magneto check. He did not hear any power hesitation prior to the engine quitting during takeoff.

At 1946, N9201R was cleared for takeoff on runway 19 (6,827 feet by 150 feet, grooved concrete) at intersection K (runway available from intersection K was about 5,313 feet). During takeoff, N9201R reported an emergency during the climb. The airplane descended to an estimated height of 10 feet above the runway surface with the landing gear retracted. The airplane was approximately no farther than half down the runway before a second climb began and N9201R reported "I'm okay." The airplane attained an altitude of about 300-400 feet above ground level when it was observed to enter a turning stall. The airplane descended and impacted a field about 0.25 miles southwest of the departure end of runway 19.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 52, was issued a private pilot certificate on May 11, 2004, after passing a private pilot examination on his second attempt. A Cessna 172R was used for the examination and the pilot's total time at the time of the examination was 88.7 hours.

The first entry of the pilot's logbook was dated October 20, 2001, which was an "intro flight" using a Cessna 152.

Prior to February 12, 2013, logbook entries showed that the pilot had only flown Cessna 152, Cessna 172 and Piper PA-28-160 airplanes. From February 12 to February 14, 2013, the pilot received 11.4 hours of Mooney airplane training and a complex airplane endorsement under Part 61.31(e) using the accident airplane. The pilot's total flight time to date on February 14, 2013, was 289.5 hours. There were four entries after the pilot's last training flight. The last entry in the pilot's logbook was not dated and the total flight time to date was 308.7 hours, of which 30.6 hours were in Mooney airplanes.

The flight instructor, who provided the pilot's Mooney airplane training, stated that the pilot was a "pretty good pilot" and "pretty adept." He was "pretty thorough" and did not rush or hurry up and would not skip items. The pilot did "fine" and there were "no issues." The pilot did not have any flight time in retractable landing gear airplanes before he started training. He thought that it was "unusual" that the pilot did not have an airplane instrument rating.

The pilot did not have any previous Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) record of accident, incidents, or violations.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

N9201R was a 1978 Mooney M20J, serial number 24-0614, airplane was purchased by Air McRoyal, LLC (the aircraft registration application was signed by the pilot as president of McRoyal Industries, Inc. on December 14, 2012) on December 31, 2013.

The airplane was powered by a Lycoming IO-360-A3B6D, serial number L-19288-51A, engine. The engine was equipped with a Bendix RSA-5AD1, serial number 67270, fuel servo.

The last annual inspection of the airframe was dated January 8, 2013. A work order for the annual inspection, which was also a presale inspection, referenced an airplane total time of 2,423.84 and a tachometer time of 2,423.84. The work order for the inspection listed Item 7 with the following:

Discrepancy: Replace fuel cap O-rings

Note: Water in fuel system

Corrective Action: Replaced the fuel cap O-rings

The parts listed under Item 7 were two MS29513-010 Fuel Cap O-Rings, Small and two MS29513-338 Fuel Cap O-Rings. The work order and airframe logbook did not cite that the fuel tanks were pressurized to check for leaks of the fuel caps.

The Mooney M20J Service and Maintenance Manual, Section 28-00-01, Fuel Filler Cap Maintenance and Assembly, stated in part:

3. The sealing capability of each cap assembly should be checked periodically and at each annual inspection. This can be accomplished per the following procedures:

A. Remove cap assembly from wing filler port and inspect o'ring (1) for any damage or brittleness. Remove and replace if needed.

B. Adjust tension of shaft (2) and rotating lock plate (3) by removing cotter pin (5) from nut (6) on threaded portion of shaft (2). Tighten nut (6) so cap assembly handle (7) can be opened, turned and shut with hand pressure and still provide the necessary seal of cap assembly to keep water from entering fuel tank.

NOTE: Fuel selector should be in the OFF position before proceeding with paragraph C to pressurize the fuel tanks.

C. Connect rubber hose to each tank's vent line. Apply only one-half pound (1/2 lb.) air pressure. Check for fuel cap leaks by soaping circumference of filler cap assembly and observing bubbles. Replace o'ring if bubbles are observed and adjustment of the nut does not stop the leak.

The engine was overhauled May 22, 1992. The last annual inspection of the engine was dated January 8, 2013, at an engine total time of 2,423.84, a time since major overhaul of 1,027.25, and a tachometer time of 2,423.84.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

The MKC automated surface observing system recorded at 1345: wind - 170 degrees at 7 knots, wind variable between 120 and 210 degrees; visibility - 10 statute miles. sky condition – broken at 5,000 feet above ground level, temperature 28 degrees Celsius, dew point 14 degrees Celsius, altimeter setting - 30.12 inches of mercury.

Rain totals at MKC for August 15, 16, and 17, 2014, were 0.49 inches, 0.11 inches, and 0.62 inches, respectively.

MEDICAL INFORMATION

The pilot was issued a third class airman medical certificate dated December 2, 2011, with the following limitation: "Holder must wear corrective lenses for distant vision while exercising the privileges of his airman certificate."

The FAA Final Forensic Toxicology Fatal Accident Report for the pilot reported:

No carbon monoxide was detected in blood, cyanide testing was not performed, no ethanol was detected in vitreous, and no listed drugs were detected in urine.

An autopsy of the pilot was performed by the Jackson County Medical Examiner, Kansas City, Missouri. The cause of death was listed as multiple blunt force trauma.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The main wreckage, which included the fuselage, attached wings and empennage with their respective control surfaces, engine, and propeller was located in a field about 0.25 nautical miles southwest of the departure end of runway 19 at an elevation of about 705 feet mean sea level. The airplane was oriented in an upright position and a tail to nose heading of approximately 170 degrees. The landing gear jack screw extension was consistent with the landing gear in the retracted position. The flap jack screw extension was consistent with flaps in the 10-degree position. The empennage trim jack screw extension was consistent for a setting for a flaps 10 degree takeoff. There was no evidence of soot or fire.

The fuselage exhibited aft crushing to about the rear cabin entry door frame and cockpit roof was broken open. The engine compartment exhibited aft crushing damage. The leading edge of both wings exhibited aft crushing about 1/3 wing chord. The deformation included upward bending near the forward portion of both wing tank fuel filler necks. Both wing fuel tanks were broken open. Both wings exhibited about a 90-degree crush angle. The outer wing section of the left wing was had greater relative aft deformation and was curled upwards. The empennage was bent laterally toward the right about 10 degrees and the left horizontal stabilizer and its elevator tip was bent upwards.

Flight control continuity from all the flight control surface to the cockpit controls was confirmed.

Both wing fuel caps were in place and the fuel cap locking tabs were in the down position and flush with the top of the fuel caps. The fuel caps were removed and all of the fuel cap components were in place. A brown colored stain was present on the left fuel tank filler neck flange. Both fuel caps were replaced and locked into place and water was poured over both fuel caps, which resulted in the water pouring out from the underside of both fuel caps. The fuel caps were interchanged and water was poured over each fuel cap, which resulted in the same effect. Examination of the fuel tanks revealed that a black colored sealant was present along the bottom of the wing fuel tank ribs. The sealant did not cover any of the holes at the bottom of the ribs. There were no obstructions in the fuel sump system.

The fuel line from the fuel selector to the engine was broken open and separated. The fuel selector knob was bent and positioned near the left fuel tank selection.

The ignition key switch was at the BOTH position. The mixture, propeller, and throttle control knobs were in the forward position.

Examination of the engine confirmed control continuity of the mixture, propeller, and throttle controls from their respective engine accessories to the cockpit controls. Borescope inspection of the engine cylinders revealed no anomalies. The engine was turned through by rotating the propeller by hand, during which air was drawn in and expelled through each top spark plug hole. Valve train continuity was confirmed during the engine rotation. The magneto was rotated by hand and electrical continuity through the ignition harness was confirmed.

Examination of the airplane engine revealed the presence of a liquid consistent with water present in the fuel servo in a proportion estimated to half of that of remaining liquid that was consistent with 100 low lead aviation fuel. The fuel injector diaphragm was disassembled, and a liquid consistent with water was present under the diaphragm.

The airplane instrument panel was damaged by impact forces. The airplane's hour meter was separated from the instrument panel and three of the digits were between values. The hour meter indicated 1,176.2. The tachometer was of digital type, and no reading was obtained.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

There were no reports of fuel contamination and/or loss of engine power by airplanes fueled at the airport self-serve fuel pump where the accident airplane was fueled from. Examination of the airport fuel facility did not reveal any fuel contamination.

The flight instructor, who provided the pilot's Mooney airplane training, stated that he taught the pilot to use the fuel strainer to check the fuel and that it takes about 10-15 minutes for contaminants to settle. They discussed that Mooney airplanes can allow water through the fuel cap O-rings.

According to the Mooney M20J Pilot's Operating Handbook and FAA Approved Airplane Flight Manual, Section 4, Normal Procedures, the Preflight Inspection checklist precedes the Before Engine Starting Check checklist. The Preflight Inspection stated to sump the fuel tank sump drains.

According to the Airplane Flying Handbook (FAA-H-8083-3A), Chapter 11, Transition to Complex Airplanes, Takeoff and Climb:

"Normally, the landing gear should be retracted after lift-off when the airplane has reached an altitude where, in the event of an engine failure or other emergency requiring an aborted takeoff, the airplane could no longer be landed on the runway. This procedure, however, may not apply to all situations. Landing gear retraction should be preplanned, taking into account the length of the runway, climb gradient, obstacle clearance requirements, the characteristics of the terrain beyond the departure end of the runway, and the climb characteristics of the particular airplane."


http://registry.faa.gov/N9201R


NTSB Identification: CEN13FA496
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 18, 2013 in Kansas City, MO
Aircraft: MOONEY M20J, registration: N9201R
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.


On August 18, 2013, about 1445 central daylight time, a Mooney M20J, N9201R, descended and impacted terrain after takeoff from Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport (MKC), Kansas City, Missouri. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the wings and fuselage. The private pilot and a passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to Air McRoyal LLC and operated by the pilot under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight that was not operating on a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The flight was originating at the time of the accident and was en route to Youngstown, Ohio.


The airplane arrived at MKC on August 15, 2013, and was parked on the ramp until the day of the accident when it was taxied to the airport self-serve fuel pump and 25.25 gallons of 100 low lead aviation fuel was obtained.


A mechanic stated that he heard the airplane engine run-up and takeoff. The run-up was “short” and was “less than a minute.” He did not hear any engine power hesitations during the run-up, just a “quick” magneto check. He did not hear any power hesitation prior to the engine quitting during takeoff.


The airplane departed runway 19 (6,827 feet by 150 feet, grooved concrete) and the pilot reported an unspecified problem during climb. The airplane descended to an estimated height of 10 feet above the runway surface with the landing gear retracted. The airplane was approximately no farther than half down the runway before a second climb began. The airplane attained an altitude of about 300-400 feet above ground level when it was observed to enter a turning stall. The airplane descended and impacted a field about 0.25 miles southwest of the departure end of runway 19.


Examination of the airplane engine revealed the presence of a liquid consistent with water present in the fuel servo.


There were no reports of fuel contamination and/or loss of engine power by airplanes fueled at the fuel pump where the accident airplane was fueled from. Examination of the airport fuel facility did not reveal any fuel contamination.


The pilot bought the airplane in February 2013. He accumulated a total flight time of about 308.7 hours, of which 19.2 hours were in the accident airplane make and model.


John and Diana Lallo 


PHILADELPHIA (CN) - A couple perished in a plane crash because a parts manufacturer designed an engine with defective gaskets that were prone to coming loose, their children claim in court.

The son and three daughters of Diana and John Lallo Sr. sued Lycoming Engines and several of its subsidiaries in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on Wednesday, claiming that the manufacturer's "unusual and unorthodox" engine design caused their parents' deaths.

The engine allegedly featured a single-drive ignition system rather than the double-drive model used in most Lycoming engines, according to the complaint, and its "unwieldy" design caused the engine to lose timing just moments after the Lallos took off in their plane from a Kansas City, Mo. airport.

The lawsuit alleges that the plane was only a few hundred feet in the air when the engine failed, but Lallo was unable to return to the airport in the face of the "overwhelming emergency." The plane crashed and caught fire, killing both passengers, the complaint states.

The Lallo family claim Lycoming and Continental Motors, which designed the engine's ignition system, were aware of no less than 19 past plane crashes between the years of 1983 and 2013 that resulted from problems with the design of the single-drive engine. Rather than admit the design was flawed, though, they allegedly "embarked on a campaign of shifting blame to other causes" in an attempt to conceal the dangers from regulatory agencies and members of the public.

Lycoming and its subsidiaries were even aware that the looseness of the engine gaskets didn't conform to Federal Aviation Administration regulations, the lawsuit claims, but did not disclose that during the mandatory engine certification process.

The surviving family members say the engine manufacturers intentionally committed fraud "for the purpose of selling more aircraft engines...even though they knew people would be injured or killed as a result," according to the complaint.

In addition to fraud and conspiracy, Lycoming and Continental are accused of negligence, strict product liability and of breaching the contract and warranty for the aircraft engine by not delivering on their "express and implied" promise that the product they designed was safe.

The suit also names several other defendants responsible for the design or manufacture of the defective engine or its component parts. The accused include Avco Corporation, the parent company of Lycoming, and Honeywell International, which merged with one of Continental Motors' subsidiary companies.

The Lallos' four children - John Lallo Jr., Melissa Lallo-Johnson, Erica Hoar and Samantha Lallo - are also suing for negligent infliction of emotional distress. The Estate of John and Diana Lallo is represented in the lawsuit by its administrator, Ohio attorney James Dietz.

Dietz and the Lallos are represented by Cynthia Devers of the Wolk Law Firm in Philadelphia. They seek at least $50,000 in damages.

Representatives from Lycoming Engines did not return a call seeking comment on the matter.  

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

  John and Diana Lallo 
~


















 


 The family of an Ohio couple that died Sunday in a small-plane crash at Wheeler Downtown Airport announced funeral plans Wednesday. 

John Kenneth Lallo Sr. and Diana Christine Ceo Lallo, ages 52 and 53 respectively, died when their single-engine plane crashed into a field just south of the runway, not long after taking off.

They were in Kansas City visiting family.

The couple married after graduating high school in the late 1970s. John Lallo worked for the family business, McRoyal Industries, Inc., in Youngstown, while Diana Lallo worked as a science teacher.

Visitation will take place Saturday at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church, 1125 Turin St., Youngstown, Ohio, from 8 to 11 a.m., followed by a funeral mass.

In lieu of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to the church.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The names of the two killed in Sunday’s plane crash at the downtown Kansas City airport were confirmed on Monday. 

John and Diana Lallo of Youngstown, Ohio died in the crash as it was taking off about 2:45 p.m. The Lallos had family in Kansas City.

The National Transportation Safety Board sifted through the wreckage on Monday, searching for clues and removed it from the levee just past the runway.

The pilot reported engine problems on takeoff and witnesses say it made a sharp turn back toward the airport.

Pilots who fly at the airport know how quickly they start flying over the populated downtown area. One pilot says it’s why he charts an emergency flight path in the air.

“You do have options. I have in the back of my head I'm going to start thinking I-70 can be used. The highway is a runway,” Pilot Ryan Westward said.

It could take weeks before the NTSB determines the cause of the crash.

Source:  http://www.kshb.com

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Family and friends are mourning the loss of a Youngstown State University graduate and beloved members of the community who died in a plane crash in Kansas City, Missouri.

John and Diana Lallo are being remembered for their love of kids and commitment to the Liberty Schools, their children and each other.

The Principal of WS Guy Middle School, Judd Rubin, tells 21 News he first met the two when John Lallo was on the school board and Diana Lallo was a science school teacher.

He says the couple was always together.

The Middle School Principal says John Lallo was level-headed and believed in doing things the right way; a giving man who helped the district.

Rubin says Diana Lallo was the teacher that students in high school would go back to visit. He said kids loved the way Diana brought science to life and made it fun to learn.

John Lallo was President of the company his father founded in Youngstown.

McRoyal Industries sold chairs, cabinets and other interior products to giants food service industries such as Arby's, McDonald's, Burger King, Taco Bell and others.

McRoyal also designed custom interiors for commercial, industrial and residential businesses such as Abercrombie and Fitch, Verizon Wireless and other well known companies.

Rubin says teachers and students have called expressing their sadness and condolences.

He says their hearts go out to the four children and grandchildren and that people who knew the couple are heartbroken.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the cause of the crash, which happened on August 18.

Officials say the pilot of the plane radioed the tower saying he was having engine troubles shortly before the crash and was returning to the airport.

The bodies of a man and woman have not yet been positively identified by the Medical Examiners Office.

http://www.wfmj.com

A federal investigator began Monday what could be a yearlong process to determine why a small plane crashed Sunday at Wheeler Downtown Airport, killing two people. 

Mitchell Gallo, an air safety investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board, said crews were cleaning up the wreckage of the single-engine aircraft from the field just south of the main runway.

That wreckage will be taken to an undisclosed location where investigators will study the aircraft’s systems in more detail to begin piecing together the cause of the accident.

Speaking to reporters on a levee overlooking the crash site, Gallo confirmed witness accounts that the plane went down about 2:45 p.m. Sunday without fire or explosion.

“There is no evidence of soot or fire,” Gallo said. “But I can’t draw any conclusions from that yet.”

Gallo said that investigations usually take about a year, but cautioned that “each crash is different.”

Also Monday, the Jackson County Medical Examiner’s Office worked to conclusively identify the two crash victims, a man and a woman.

Jackson County spokesman Dan Ferguson said the condition of the bodies had ruled out a visual identification.

“They’re still working to identify the bodies,” Ferguson said. “They’re going to have to go into forensic identification.”

Citing local aviation sources, an Ohio television station and newspaper tentatively the victims as Youngstown businessman John Lallo and his wife, Diana, which Ferguson said he could not confirm.

The family owns McRoyal Industries, which provides products to the food service industry.

Federal aviation records show that the plane was owned by Air McRoyal LLC and list the same address as that of the manufacturing company.

In an email to The Kansas City Star, James B. Dietz, a Youngstown lawyer who has represented Air McRoyal, declined to discuss either the accident or the firm.

“We are still in the process of ensuring that the family of the victims are all aware of this catastrophe and are able to cope with these circumstances,” Dietz wrote.

Efforts to reach a relative of the couple in Kansas City were unsuccessful Monday.

The plane was built by the Mooney Aviation Co. in 1978, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Lynn Lunsford, an FAA spokesman, said his agency’s understanding of the basic facts of the crash had not changed overnight.

Just after takeoff, the pilot reported engine trouble and was cleared to return to the airport. The plane soon crashed on the south side of the levee, about a quarter mile from the runway.

Witnesses said the plane appeared to have turned back to the airport as it crossed back north over the Missouri River. No fire, smoke or explosion was reported on impact.

Rescuers found the plane on its belly between the levee and the river, its wings still attached.

Gallo said Monday that the small plane did not have a flight data recorder, but that some instrumentation on the aircraft, such as GPS systems, may have recorded the plane’s speed, altitude and headings during its final minutes and seconds of flight.

Monday’s work also included documenting the wreckage and crash site with photographs and notes. Witnesses to the accident, including air traffic controllers, still need to be interviewed and pilot and maintenance records of the aircraft scrutinized.

Gallo said he isn’t prepared to say what event, or cascade of events, caused the crash until he’s pulled together the facts.

“We don’t have the factual evidence at this time,” Gallo said.

Source: http://www.kansascity.com


UPDATE:   The medical examiner’s office in Jackson County, Missouri confirmed early today that it was working to positively identify the bodies of two people who died on Sunday in a plane crash shortly after takeoff from a small airport near Kansas City.

Those close to the investigation, though, say John and Diana Lallo are likely the victims of that crash.


Dan Dickten, director of aviation at the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport, where the plane was registered under John Lallo’s name and where the flight first took off from on Thursday said it was apparent the couple was aboard the single-engine plane built by the Mooney Aviation Co.


The aircraft was registered to Air McRoyal. According to records at the Youngstown-Warren airport, Lallo began renting hangar space there in 2006, when he was listed under an unidentified parties aircraft. In 2009, he began renting hangar space for an aircraft that he owned.


Dickten said he believed Lallo was an avid flyer. Lallo and his wife were in Missouri at the time of the crash, he said.


The plane had taken off from the Youngstown-Regional Airport at 3:31 p.m. Thursday, stopping at the Purdue University Airport before landing at the Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport in Kansas City at 8:48 p.m., according to online flight records.


Authorities said the plane was leaving the airport about 2:45 p.m. Sunday when it crashed on the south side of the levee about a quarter-mile from the runway.


Lynn Lunsford, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, said the National Transportation Safety Board is now in charge of the investigation because fatalities are involved. He added, however, that the pilot reported an unspecified engine problem shortly after takeoff and was cleared to return to the airport. Lunsford couldn’t be sure, but he said he didn’t believe weather was a factor.


John Lallo is listed as president of McRoyal Industries, which provides building services for fast food restaurants, banks and major retailers such as Abercrombie & Fitch. Based in Youngstown, the company was founded in 1956.


An official who answered the phone at McRoyal Industries today said that “out of respect for the family, no further information is available at this time.”


A person who answered the phone at the Lallo residence in Girard refused to comment, as well.


Dan Ferguson, a spokesman for Jackson County, Missouri, said it was unclear when the medical examiners office would positively identify the bodies.


Source:    http://www.vindy.com

 
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A Youngstown-area couple has been killed after a single-engine plane crashed at a small airport near downtown Kansas City.

Officials have not confirmed but sources say that Youngstown business owners John and Diana Lallo were the victims in the crash which took place a quarter of a mile from Charles B Wheeler Airport near Kansas City's business center.

The Lallo family has owned McRoyal Industries since 1965. The business provides cabinets and seats for many food industries like Arby's, Mc Donald's, Wendy's, Chili's and more.

The coroner's office has not identified the victims yet, and the cause of the crash is still under investigation.

No flight plan was filed, and the trip was deemed recreational.

Lynn Lunsford, spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, says the pilot reported engine trouble shortly after departing the airport. He says the plane crashed about a quarter mile from the airport. FAA records show the plane was registered to Air McRoyal, of Youngstown, Ohio.

Lunsford says investigators were headed to the scene.

Wheeler Airport, located just west of downtown Kansas City, is used largely by corporate and recreational flyers.


Story, Photo and Video:  http://www.wfmj.com


KANSAS CITY, Mo. —Firefighters said a small plane crashed at the Charles B. Wheeler Airport Sunday afternoon, killing two people. 

The crash happened just before 3 p.m. The single-engine Mooney had just left the airport on Runway 19 when it crashed into a levee on the south side, about a quarter-mile away.

A witness reported seeing the plane flying lower than it should have. The pilot radioed concerns to the tower and then the plane crashed.

"I looked out the window and it looked awful low for it coming in," said Charles Hamilton. "I got to the river and they said there's a plane crash, and I said, 'I bet that's the plane.'"

The pilot and the lone passenger both died in the wreck. Their names have not been released, but investigators said it was a man and a woman.

Police said the crash happened shortly after the plane took off.

It was not immediately clear where the flight was heading. Federal Aviation Administration records show the plane was registered to Air McRoyal LLC, of Youngstown, Ohio. According to FlightAware.com, the plane originally came to Kansas City from Purdue University on Thursday.

Kansas City Police Chief Darryl Forte said the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board would investigate the crash.  Investigators said they have secured the scene and the airport remains open.

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


Story and Video:  http://fox4kc.com

North American Navion, N91418, Air Group 88 LLC: Accident occurred July 23, 2015 near Eagle's Nest Airport (W13), Waynesboro, Augusta County, Virginia

AIR GROUP 88 LLC:  http://registry.faa.govN91418

NTSB Identification: ERA15LA282
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, July 23, 2015 in Waynesboro, VA
Aircraft: NORTH AMERICAN NAVION, registration: N91418
Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 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 July 23, 2015, about 1045 eastern daylight time, a North American Navion, N91418, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees and a pond shortly after takeoff from runway 24 at the Eagles Nest Airport (W13), near Waynesboro, Virginia. The private pilot received minor injuries and the passenger received serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a VFR flight plan was filed for the personal flight to Sullivan County International Airport (MSV) in Monticello, New York. The flight was operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

During an interview with the pilot he stated, "I rotated at 65 mph and lifted off the ground, but the airspeed didn't increase and I wasn't gaining any altitude." He leveled the airplane off briefly to achieve 70 mph, and then increased pitch, but it was not gaining altitude and the airspeed dropped back to 65.

During an interview with the passenger, she stated, "The takeoff at first was fine, but then noticed it was a little sluggish off the ground."

A witness on the ground stated the airplane "appeared to take longer than normal to take off" and "it pitched up nose high and got to about fifteen feet in the air, before settling back down to 4 to 5 feet above the runway and wobbled down the length before it hit the trees and disappeared."

The airplane struck a line of brush and sapling trees 600 feet past the departure end of runway 24, before striking a berm and coming to rest inverted in a pond an additional 170 feet from the tree line.

The Federal Aviation Administration inspectors on scene observed ground scars leading up to the impact with the trees in addition to broken tree limbs and foliage pushed over in the direction of travel. There was substantial damage to the right wing, fuselage and empennage. In addition, the propeller exhibited rotational scoring and one blade detached during the accident sequence.

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Richmond FSDO-21

AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va (WVIR) - A Charlottesville couple was able to walk away from a rough landing after their plane ended up in an Augusta County pond.

According to police, a 1946 North American Navion aircraft was in the process of taking off from the Eagles Nest Airport when it clipped some trees just beyond the runway and crash landed into a small pond in a cow pasture.

The pilot, 65-year-old William R. Krause, and the passenger, his wife Sharon, are shaken up but remarkably alright. State police say Sharon Krause was sent to Augusta Health to be treated for minor injuries. The pilot didn’t report any injuries.

A witness says the couple climbed out after they hit the water.

"I heard it come up that way, then I heard the engine cut off and I didn't hear it hit the water and I didn't think anything of it. And then I saw the firefighters and everything coming through the field, and then I rode up and saw everything and everybody was just here getting the people out," said Madison Montgomery.

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

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Updated statement from the Virginia State Police:

At 10:56 a.m., Thursday (July 23), Virginia State Police Sr. Trooper S.A. Simmons responded to a report of a plane crash near the Eagles Nest Airport in Augusta County.

A 1946 North American Navion aircraft was in the process of taking off from the Eagles Nest Airport when it clipped some nearby trees just beyond the runway and crash landed into a small pond in an open field/pasture.

The pilot, William R. Krause, 65, of Charlottesville, Va., and his wife, Sharon Krause, were the only occupants of the plane. Mrs. Krause was transported to Augusta Health for treatment of minor injuries; Mr. Krause was not injured.

The FAA and NTSB have been notified. The cause of the crash landing is still under investigation.


AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) -- Augusta County fire and rescue crews responded to a single-engine plane crash near Waynesboro on Thursday morning.

Authorities said the 1946 North American Navion aircraft took off from Eagles Nest Airport shortly before 11 a.m.

The plane was in the process of taking off when it failed to get enough altitude, clipped a few trees, hit the banks and rolled over into a pond in a field just beyond the runway off of Red Top Orchard Road, according to state police.

The pilot, William Krause, 56, and his wife, Sharon, both from Charlottesville, were the only people on the plane and able to exit the plane on their own.

Mrs. Krause was taken to Augusta Health with minor injuries while Mr. Krause was not injured, according to state police.

The FAA has been notified and the cause of the crash landing is still under investigation

Source:  http://www.whsv.com

 













Pilot indicted for role in cocaine ring

Federal authorities announced on Thursday they have indicted a New Jersey man for his participation in a Rochester-based drug trafficking operation.

Khamraj Lall, a native of Guyana, is charged with possession with intent to distribute cocaine and importation of cocaine into the United States.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert A. Marangola, who is handling the case, said that according to the indictment, between December 2013 and February 10, 2015, the defendant conspired to bring more than five kilograms of cocaine from Guyana into the United States.

Lall is a pilot and is accused of transporting the cocaine on his flights from Guyana to the United States.

He was arrested on July 22, 2015 and made an initial appearance in federal court in the District of New Jersey. He is being held until he can make an appearance in federal court here in the Western District of New York.

According to the US Attorney’s office, Lall’s arrest is connected to the arrest of nine other defendants in February 2015. Edward Mighty, Seymour Brown, Andre Taylor, Ricardo Bailey, Robert Wilson, Kenneth Harper, Desmond Bice, and Christopher, all of Rochester, NY, were charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine and use of a telephone to facilitate drug trafficking. Some of the co-defendants also face weapons charges.

Winifredo Gonzales, a Brooklyn resident, was also arrested in February.

According to the complaint, Edward Mighty is one of the leaders of a Rochester-based drug trafficking organization that would obtain kilogram quantities of cocaine from Gonzales.

The cocaine was transported to Rochester and processed, re-packaged, and distributed in various quantities of both powder and crack cocaine through multiple sellers in the Rochester area.

Source:  http://www.democratandchronicle.com

Aero Commander 100 Darter, N5542M: Accident occurred July 22, 2015 at Stinson Municipal Airport (KSSF), San Antonio, Texas

http://registry.faa.gov/N5542M

NTSB Identification: CEN15CA324
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, July 22, 2015 in San Antonio, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/14/2016
Aircraft: AERO COMMANDER 100, registration: N5542M
Injuries: 1 Serious, 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 pilot attempted to start the airplane engine by hand propping it because the engine could not be started using the starter because the battery was dead. The airplane had a chock under the left main landing gear wheel, and the pilot side door was propped open with a passenger aboard for the engine start. Upon engine start, the airplane jumped the chock and began to accelerate along the ground. The pilot ran along side of the airplane attempting to open the pilot side door, which had closed. When the airplane speed became too fast for the pilot to run alongside of the airplane, he stood on the main landing gear, holding the strut, and continued to attempt entry into the airplane while telling the passenger to pull the brake, throttle, mixture, or turn off the ignition key switch. The airplane impacted a 10-inch barrier, knocking the pilots legs off the main landing gear, and the airplane ran over the pilot's leg. The pilot pulled up onto the wing strut, still giving instruction to the passenger while attempting to enter the pilot side door, but the prop-wash was making this "feat impossible". About 59 mph, the airplane departed the airfield, becoming airborne, and at 6 feet above ground level, the pilot let go of the wing strut and fell to the ground. The airplane climbed, nosed forward, touched down on the nose landing gear, and impacted a construction dirt pilot before it nosed-over. The airplane sustained substantial damage that included damage to each wing spar and a bent empennage. The pilot sustained minor injuries, and the passenger sustained serious injuries. The airplane was not equipped with shoulder harnesses and was not required to be equipped with shoulder harnesses. The pilot's experience in hand-propping airplanes and the injuries of the passenger were unknown at the time this report was written.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's improper decision to attempt flight with an unairworthy airplane and improper starting procedure that resulted in an uncontrolled takeoff without the pilot aboard. Contributing was the inoperative airplane battery/engine starter.

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA San Antonio FSDO-17



SAN ANTONIO --- The San Antonio Fire Department responded to an emergency Wednesday evening at a South Side airport.

The active fires website indicated that the incident occurred at about 8:50 p.m. at the Stinson Municipal Airfield in the 8500 block of Mission Road.

At the runway, a fixed wing single-engine aircraft could be seen upside down as firefighters examined the scene.

The plane is registered to Travis N. Tatum of Gatesville, according to the Federal Aviation Administration registry.

No information was available regarding injured persons or the cause of the accident.




SAN ANTONIO - A small plane flipped over at Stinson Municipal Airport late Wednesday night, San Antonio Fire Department officials said.   

The pilot was reportedly taxiing the plane at the end of the runway when the aircraft turned and flipped over, fire officials said. 

Crews took some time to get the pilot out of the cockpit because it had been crushed. 

Fire officials did not say whether the pilot was seriously injured. 

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the accident.

Former airport board chairman to be sentenced • Foothills Regional (KMRN), Morganton, North Carolina

Three years after the FBI raided Foothills Regional Airport looking for evidence of wrongdoing, the last person charged in the case, at this point, is expected to be sentenced next month.

Randy Hullette, who is facing a maximum 30-year sentence for witness tampering and embezzlement, was scheduled to be sentenced in February but his attorney asked for and received a continuance in the case. The reason for the continuance was sealed.

Hullette’s sentencing has been rescheduled for 4 p.m. Aug. 11 in courtroom 1 at the federal courthouse in Asheville, according to government documents. U.S. District Judge Martin Reidinger will preside over the sentencing.

Hullette pleaded guilty to the charges on Aug. 21, 2013.

It’s unclear whether the case will be considered closed after Hullette’s sentencing. The original FBI search warrant called for seizing any files, records or information related to Hullette Aviation, Burkemont Service Center, RANMAC, Inc., Jeffrey Rose, Grady Rose Tree Service, Jimmy “Ron” Gilbert, Gilbert Grading and Construction, Simon Roofing and Parton Lumber.

The FBI raided the airport in June 2012. The warrant included records from the airport involving former airport manager Alex Nelson, former operations manager Brad Adkins and Hullette. The investigation revealed the three defrauded the airport of at least $100,000.

Nelson was sentenced in February 2014 to three years in prison and three years supervised probation. He also was ordered to pay $179,781.51 in restitution. Nelson reported to prison in Beckley, West Virginia on June 9, 2014.

After reporting to prison, Nelson filed an appeal to his sentencing to the 4th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, saying he had questions about the process.

Nelson’s appeal was dismissed in December.

He pleaded guilty in September 2012 to conspiracy, embezzlement and money laundering.

Adkins, who also pleaded guilty in September 2012 to public corruption conspiracy and embezzlement, was sentenced June 3, 2014, to time served, four months of house arrest and three years supervised release; had to pay a $200 assessment; and jointly pay, along with Nelson, $85,305.59 in restitution.

The federal government revoked Adkins’ bond in February 2014 after he taped urine to his body to try to pass a drug test. In November 2013, he admitted to taking Xanax, which is commonly used to treat anxiety.

Adkins was jailed in Marion on Feb. 11, 2014, and held until his sentencing on June 3, 2014.

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

Cessna plane crashes in North Korea last week

SEOUL, July 23 (Yonhap) -- A small North Korean plane, the same type of plane used by leader Kim Jong-un, has crashed, an official said Thursday.

The Cessna went down near the eastern port city of Wonsan, home to Kim's special villa, on July 15, said the South Korean official familiar with the issue.

The crash was confirmed with intelligence assets of South Korea and the U.S., she said, without elaborating on the assets or the Cessna model.

She did not provide any further details of whether there were any casualties of those who were on board the doomed flight.

Kim was apparently not on board the ill-fated plane. On July 15, North Korea's state television aired footage of Kim taking photos with participants of an ambassadors meeting in Pyongyang.

On Sunday, Kim cast a ballot in the elections to select deputies to local assemblies, which were held for the first time in four years, according to the North's official Korean Central News Agency.

North Korea's state media remained silent on the accident.

Cheong Wa Dae, South Korea's presidential office, declined to comment. The National Intelligence Service, South Korea's top spy agency, referred inquiries to the Defense Ministry, saying it could not confirm the plane crash.

Defense Ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok said he had no information.

Another source in the intelligence community said that Kim Jong-un has used a Cessna 172 Skyhawk, a four-seat, single-engine aircraft built by the Cessna Aircraft Co., a U.S. aviation company.

North Korea has assembled Cessna planes by importing parts through a third country, he said, without naming the country. He said Cessna models in North Korea include the Cessna 152 and the Cessna 172 Skyhawk. He asked not to be identified, citing the issue's sensitivity.

In March last year, footage of the North's state television showed a small plane presumed to be the Cessna 172 Skyhawk during Kim's inspection trip to an air force unit.

Original article can be found here:  http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr

Change order: More than $406,000 in extra fees on top of controversial $40 million contract

The change order obtained by FOX10 News shows several hundreds of thousands of dollars more in fees added on to the $40 million contract with Harris Corporation.


FOX10 News | WALA


MOBILE COUNTY, AL (WALA) - A document known as a change order, obtained by FOX10 News, shows hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees added to a controversial $40 million contract the Mobile County 911 Board signed two years ago. 
 
The board's consultant told FOX10 News if the contract wouldn't have been rushed, those expenses may have been avoided.

The 911 board approved the controversial contract with Harris Corporation back in 2013 to help enhance emergency response communications across the county. Now, that contract is under investigation by an independent review panel.

Some board members pushed to have the contract investigated, because they felt it was "barely legal," saying the project was not bidded out in a fair amount of time.

Dominic Tusa, a consultant hired by the 911 board, agreed.

"There wasn't enough time for other vendors to prepare a credible, good proposal," said Tusa.

Now we're learning, that rushed effort could have caused more tax dollar waste.

According to a change order obtained by FOX10 News, Harris Corp is asking the 911 board for hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of extra work that somehow wasn't included in the original contract specifications.

For instance, Tusa said one of the change order items involved a discrepancy with radio towers.

It was written in the contract for the towers to include incandescent bulbs rather than traditional strobe bulbs, but the problem there is, Tusa said, if the incandescent bulbs are on top of towers, the towers need to be painted a certain way.

"When Harris made its proposal, they identified the fact that they were going to provide this incandescent lighting and marking for the towers based on the Federal Aviation Administration rules and regulations, which happened to also include painting, yet, later on they came back with a change order and said, 'gee, we need funding from you guys to paint the towers,'" explained Tusa. "Well, Harris has been in the radio business for a long, long time, and certainly they should have known that if you're putting incandescent light bulbs on towers, they have to be painted, because that's what the Federal Aviation Administration rules say. So our opinion, Harris should have been responsible for painting the towers."

A close look at the change order shows another $255,000 was spent to strengthen two different towers in the county, and another $26,100 was spent on metal awnings and hoods for shelters.

Tusa said Mobile County employee Eric Linsley, who wrote the specifications for the contract, didn't heed his advice. He feels if his services had been utilized when the contract was written, the board may not have had to face these extra fees.

"I think they gave it their best effort, but they're probably, they're not as knowledgeable in procurement, because they don't do theses types of procurements, and they don't understand maybe what is and isn't involved or included in a radio system project of this type. They should have utilized some outside help," said Tusa. "I know that we would have caught these things."

Tusa said Linsley's possible oversights and the board's lack of fair bidding for the project is to blame for these tax dollar costs.

"That's something that probably would have come up in contract negotiations if they were aggressive negotiations," said Tusa.

A spokesperson for Harris only offered the following comment on the matter: "change orders are a common practice to amend a contract when both parties are in full agreement."

Meanwhile, Gary Tanner, Director of Mobile County 911, said he will not be commenting on camera any more until the investigation into the contract is complete.

Original article can be found here: http://www.fox10tv.com