Sunday, October 11, 2015

Cessna 172N Skyhawk, N733VB: Accident occurred October 11, 2015 Miami Beach, Florida

FEDERICO RUIZ LOPEZ: http://registry.faa.gov/N733VB

NTSB Identification: ERA16LA009 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, October 11, 2015 in Miami Beach, FL
Aircraft: CESSNA 172N, registration: N733VB
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

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

On October 11, 2015, at 1537 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172N, N733VB, was substantially damaged during a ditching in the Atlantic Ocean about 11 nautical miles east of Miami Beach, Florida. The private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight that departed from the North Perry Airport (HWO), Hollywood, Florida, about 1513 and was destined for South Bimini Airport (MYBS), South Bimini, Bahamas. The airplane was owned by Echo 6 Incorporated and operated by a private individual under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The pilot reported that while en route to Bimini, about 20 miles east of North Miami, he "felt a partial loss of power followed by a complete engine failure". He was unable to restore power, and decided to glide as close to the coastline as possible. He ditched the airplane about 11 miles east of Miami Beach, Florida.

A preliminary report from the Federal Aviation Administration indicated that at 1529 the pilot reported an engine failure to Air Traffic Control (ATC), and he advised that he would attempt to glide close to shore. The airplane turned westerly, and ATC advised the pilot that the closest airport was Miami International Airport (MIA), 26 miles away at a bearing of 269 degrees. Radar contact was lost at 1537 when the airplane was about 11 miles east of the Miami Beach shoreline. A police helicopter that was already en route to the scene, arrived about 3 minutes after the accident. The pilot was rescued by a civil boat about 1556 and was subsequently transferred to a Coast Guard vessel that responded to the scene. The airplane has not been recovered.

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Miami FSDO-19

A pilot ditched his small plane in the Atlantic on Sunday afternoon and was rescued in the water.

The pilot of the Cessna C172 was forced to make an emergency landing nine miles southeast of Hollywood at about 3:30 p.m., according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The aircraft, which had engine problems, took off from North Perry Airport in Pembroke Pines and was heading to Bimini, the FAA said in a statement.

The pilot “somehow got out of the plane and into the water,” said Petty Officer Mark Barney, a Coast Guard spokesman.

There are no reported injuries, and no reports of passengers. The FAA is investigating the crash.

The Coast Guard sent two small-boat crews and a cutter ship to the scene. Miami-Dade sent a helicopter.

“Our aviation unit heard the distress call on the radio and immediately responded to the area,” said Miami-Dade police spokesman Alvaro Zabaleta. “The police helicopter hovered on top of the area until marine units arrived.”

The pilot was brought back to Haulover Beach, about 14 miles from the crash site, by a Miami-Dade rescue boat.

The man didn’t appear to have a scratch as he walked toward a waiting BMW before riding away.

Source: http://www.miamiherald.com




HAULOVER BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- The pilot of a small plane walked away without a scratch after his aircraft crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, about 15 miles off the coast of Miami Beach, Sunday afternoon. 

Officials said the emergency landing occurred somewhere between Miami Beach and Haulover Beach, just after 3:30 p.m. The U.S. Coast Guard, Miami Beach Marine Patrol, Miami Fire Rescue and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue crews responded to the scene of the crash and were able to rescue the pilot.

Sea Tow was also on the scene to help get the pilot to dry land. Brett Sternbach with Sea Tow captured cellphone video of the rescue. "The plane was obviously all the way sunk. It was about 1,000 feet of water," he said.

"Most likely he probably landed it on the water and crawled out of the plane before it went down," said Sternbach.

Onlooker Alexander Mederos told 7News he's been flying planes for 10 years and isn't surprised the pilot made it out OK. "You do what you gotta do in the right way you can safely land, even in the water or anywhere else," he said.

7News cameras captured the pilot sitting in a Miami-Dade Fire Rescue boat shortly after arriving at the Haulover Beach Marina. "I just want to thank them, that's all," said the pilot, referring to the first responders who came to his rescue. 

7News also captured the pilot getting into a silver SUV, thankful to be able to go home to his family safe and sound. The emergency landing remains under investigation.

Source:  http://www.wsvn.com

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Fatal accident occurred October 11, 2015 at Skydive Chicago • Skydive Chicago Airport (8N2), Ottawa, Illinois

A 65-year-old skydiver who died Sunday morning after an accident in Ottawa has been identified, authorities said.

Richard L. Gomez, of Berwyn, was pronounced dead on the scene at 11:02 a.m. by the LaSalle County coroner's office, according to Cpl. Dave Woolford of the LaSalle County sheriff's office.

About 9 a.m., someone at Skydive Chicago called for an ambulance because a skydiver suffered a "hard landing," Woolford said.

About an hour later, sheriff's deputies and the coroner's office were called to the scene.

Woolford said the establishment did not close down for the day, and skydivers were still going up as of Sunday afternoon.

“Another plane took off after the investigation,’’ said Woolford, who added that an accident like the one Sunday “normally doesn’t stop people.’’

“They're a different breed. There’s a guy that jumps five or six times a day,’’ he said.

A spokeswoman for Skydive Chicago said she had no information about the incident.

“He was a really nice guy,’’ said Sal Gamino, 62, who lives across the street from Gomez in the 2600 block of Clarence Avenue.

The two would often shovel snow in the neighborhood and Gomez, a retired mechanic, would always be tinkering around with his 1983 Chevrolet Caprice Classic station wagon, in which he kept all his skydiving equipment.

“I knew he was an enthusiast,’’ but Gamino said he’d never talked about skydiving any further.

Gomez was married and had children from a prior marriage living in California.

“Every time we saw each other we’d talk,’’ Gamino said.

Gomez, who was also a handyman, asked Gamino which contractor did repair work on his roof because he was thinking of having some repairs done also.

“He’d joke that he was the jack of all trades and the master of none,’’ Gamino said.

Gomez was “quiet and relaxed at first,’’ but once they got to know each other the men became closer friends, Gamino said.

“It’s a shame,’’ Gamino said of his neighbor’s death. “It’s shocking. It took my breath away when my wife told me.’’

A woman who answered the door at Gomez's home appeared upset and said she could not talk before shutting the front door of the one-story bungalow. A faded Chicago Cubs doormat and several ceramic figurines shaped like turtles decorated its porch. The lawn was cut and appeared well cared for.

"He's got a station wagon with the old wood grain," said Ricky Garcia, 29, who was on the porch at his father-in-law's house in the 2600 block of Clarence Avenue. 

"It's loud as hell," Garcia chuckled, estimating the car was about 30 years old. Gomez took excellent care of it, Garcia said.

Garcia said he was just thinking he hadn't heard the wagon when he found out about Gomez's death.

"They kept to themselves," Garcia said of Gomez and his wife. "They're good people."

Source:   http://www.chicagotribune.com

Beechcraft G35 Bonanza, N4485D: Fatal accident occurred October 10, 2015 near Lake Tahoe Airport (KTVL), South Lake Tahoe, Eldorado County, California

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

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

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

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Sacramento FSDO-25

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Conrad M. Yu: http://registry.faa.gov/N4485D

NTSB Identification: WPR16FA007
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, October 10, 2015 in South Lake Tahoe, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/31/2017
Aircraft: BEECH G35, registration: N4485D
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 private pilot and passenger were departing on a personal cross-country flight. During takeoff, witnesses observed that the airplane was struggling to gain altitude and noted that the engine sounded as if it was not producing adequate power. They added that, as the airplane crossed over the airport boundaries, it climbed to about 100 ft above ground level in an excessively high pitch-up attitude. Shortly thereafter, the airplane crossed a ridgeline, entered a nose- and left-wing-low attitude, and impacted the backyard of a residence.

While ceiling and visibility were not an issue in this accident, the wind magnitude and changes in wind direction likely affected the flight. Wind gusts were as high as 26 knots around the accident time, and weather observation sites within 3 miles of the accident site all reported large changes in wind direction around the accident time. Although the wind was mainly from the south to southwest, there were times when the wind came from the west and north. This change in wind direction was likely due to mountain wave conditions and wind flow over the mountainous terrain, and these changes in wind direction and gusts likely affected the accident flight and the pilot’s ability to control the airplane. 

Wreckage and impact signatures were consistent with a left-wing-low and nose-low impact. Postaccident examination of the airframe, flight control system, and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. Based on the witness observations and the recorded weather data, it is likely that the airplane encountered a downdraft that exceeded the airplane’s climb performance, which resulted in the airplane exceeding its critical angle-of-attack and a subsequent aerodynamic stall. 

 An area forecast, issued about 5 hours before the accident, forecasted southwest wind at 20 knots with gusts to 30 knots for the time surrounding the accident. A terminal aerodrome forecast issued 1 hour before the accident, forecasted wind from 190 degrees at 11 knots gusting to 20 knots. However, there is no evidence that the pilot obtained weather information before the flight, thus he may not have been aware of the gusting wind conditions that affected the flight.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's inability to maintain airplane control due to an encounter with a downdraft that exceeded the airplane’s climb performance capabilities and resulted in an aerodynamic stall. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s decision to depart without obtaining a weather briefing.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On October 10, 2015 about 1735 Pacific daylight time, a Beech G35, N4485D, was destroyed when it impacted terrain during initial climb near South Lake Tahoe, California. The private pilot, who was the registered owner of the airplane, and the passenger sustained fatal injuries. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as a personal cross-country flight. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The flight originated from Lake Tahoe Airport (TVL), South Lake Tahoe, California, about 1733.

During takeoff from runway 18, witnesses located at the airport, observed the airplane oscillating in altitude at about 30 feet over the runway. A couple of witnesses reported that the engine sounded as if it was not producing an adequate amount of power. One witness reported that, at about mid-point on the runway, the airplane appeared to have entered some turbulent air; the left wing dipped but the pilot regained control. As the airplane exited the airport boundaries on the runway heading, it made a right turn followed by a left turn to an east-northeast heading. It climbed to about 100 feet above ground level (agl) in an excessively high pitch up attitude, and continued to fly towards the rising terrain. Shortly thereafter, after it crossed a ridgeline east of the airport, the airplane entered a nose and left-wing low attitude and impacted the back yard of a residence.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot, age 73, held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land and multi-engine land ratings. A third class airman medical certificate was issued to the pilot on March 10, 2015, with no limitations. During the last medical exam, the pilot reported flight experience that included 1,600 total flight hours and 25 hours in last six months. However, the pilot's logbook revealed that as of the most recent logbook entry dated October 7, 2015, he had accumulated a total of 1,580.43 hours of total flight time.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The four-seat, single-engine, low-wing, retractable landing gear airplane, serial number D-4641, was manufactured in 1956. It was powered by a Continental Motors E-225-8 engine, serial number 31362-D-6-8, rated at 225 horsepower. The airplane was also equipped with a McCauley two bladed adjustable pitch propeller. A review of maintenance records showed that the most recent annual inspection was completed March 21, 2015, at a total aircraft time of 5,935.46 hours, and the engine time since major overhaul of 211.46 hours.

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 surface trough surface trough near the accident site that would have promoted a change in wind direction over the mountainous terrain with time. The NWS Storm Prediction Center (SPC) Constant Pressure Chart for 700-hPa Chart for 1700 depicted a west to southwest wind of 20 to 30 knots moving over the higher terrain at and around the accident site. Similar wind values were observed at 500-hPa, with the wind increasing in speed to 50 knots by 300-hPa out of the west to northwest wind direction

An Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS) located at TVL reported at 1653, wind from 210 degrees at 13 knots with gusts to 21 knots, wind direction variable between 180 degrees and 260 degrees, 10 miles visibility, sky clear below 12,000 feet agl, temperature of 23 degrees Celsius (C), dew point temperature of 0 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 30.21 inches of mercury. Remarks: automated station with a precipitation discriminator, peak wind from 200 degrees at 26 knots at 1638, sea level pressure 1018.6hPa, temperature 22.8 degrees C, dew point temperature 0 degrees, 6-hourly maximum temperature of 25.6 degrees C, 6-hourly minimum temperature of 22.8 degrees, 3-hourly pressure change of 0.9 hPa. 

At 1753, TVL reported wind from 210 degrees at 9 knots with gusts to 18 knots, 10 miles visibility, clear sky below 12,000 feet agl, temperature of 21 degrees C, dew point temperature of 2 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 30.21 inches of mercury. Remarks: automated station with a precipitation discriminator, sea level pressure 1018.9 hPa, temperature 21.1 degrees C, dew point temperature 2.2 degrees C.

The one-minute TVL ASOS surface data was provided by the NWS for the time surrounding the accident. 

At 1734 PDT, KTVL reported the two-minute average wind from 209° at 12 knots and a five-second maximum average wind from 199° at 19 knots.

At 1735 PDT, KTVL reported the two-minute average wind from 211° at 13 knots and a five-second maximum average wind from 220° at 20 knots.

At 1736 PDT, KTVL reported the two-minute average wind from 219° at 11 knots and a five-second maximum average wind from 218° at 13 knots.

At 1737 PDT, KTVL reported the two-minute average wind from 211° at 9 knots and a five-second maximum average wind from 197° at 18 knots.

In addition to the official surface observation site above, there were an additional non-official surface observations sites reporting around the accident site at the accident time.

EW3758 Meyers (EW3758) station was the closest non-official surface observation site to the accident site located 1 mile west-northwest of the accident site at an elevation of 6,300 feet. EW3758 reported gusty surface winds surrounding the accident time with a 7 mph wind gusting to 15 mph from the north at 1730. The wind magnitude was similar during the observations surrounding the accident time, however, the wind direction was variable between 272 degrees and 355 degrees. 

RWBC1 was a remote automatic weather station (RAWS) station located 1 mile west-southwest of the accident site at an elevation of 6,336 feet agl. RWBC1 reported a wind from 228 degrees to 213 degrees around the accident time with the wind magnitude between 5 and 8 mph with gusts to 17 to 19 mph at 1651 and 1751.

CF047 was a California Transportation station located 3 miles south-southwest of the accident site at an elevation of 7,390 feet agl. CF047 reported a wind from 205 degrees at 1.9 mph with gust to 18.6 mph at 1731. The wind remained quite gusty at CF047 around the accident time with large changes in wind direction from 65 degrees to 255 degrees to 145 degrees. These changes in wind direction were likely the result of the wind flow over the terrain and mountain wave activity around and near the top of the terrain.

The closest official upper air sounding to the accident site was from Reno, Nevada, (REV), located 43 miles north-northeast of the accident site, at an elevation of 4,970 feet. The 1700 REV sounding indicated a relatively dry environment from the surface through 15,000 feet mean sea level (msl). 

The sounding wind profile indicated a surface wind from 235 degrees at 18 knots with the wind increasing to 25 knots while remaining southwesterly through 6,000 feet msl. 

An area forecast, issued at 1245, forecasted scattered cirrus clouds with a gusty-southwest wind 20 knots gusts to 30 knots until 2000.

Terminal Aerodrome Forecast issued at 1635, forecasted wind from 190 degrees at 11 knots gusting to 20 knots, greater than 6 miles visibility, and few clouds at 22,000 feet agl.

A search of official weather briefing sources, such as Lockheed Martin Flight Service (LMFS) and Direct User Access Terminal Service (DUATS), did not reveal the pilot received a weather briefing prior to departure. There is no knowledge of any additional weather briefing information the accident pilot received.

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

AIRPORT INFORMATION

According to the FAA Airport/Facility Directory information, LTV was a non-towered airport that was equipped with a single paved runway, designated 18/36, and airport elevation was 6,254.8 feet above msl. 

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The accident site was located in the back yard of a private residence about 1 mile south from TVL. The airplane wreckage was spread along a 140 feet-long path on a 080-degree magnetic heading. The first point of impact was a pine tree at about 100 feet agl. It exhibited a 45 degree angle cut which is consistent with a propeller blade strike. The left wing and the aft fuselage/ empennage were separated from the fuselage. The left wing was located about 108 feet from the initial point of impact; the aft fuselage/empennage were located about 150 feet from the initial point of impact. The left and right stabilizer and ruddervators remained attached to the empennage. The outboard portion of the right wing was separated and located on a tree adjacent to the empennage.

The main wreckage, which consisted of the airplane's cabin, the inboard portion of the right wing, both main landing gear, baggage compartment and forward fuselage, was resting oriented on a 220 degrees heading. These components were charred, melted, and consumed by fire. 

Flight control continuity was established from the cockpit controls throughout to all primary flight control surfaces. Multiple separations were observed in various control cables, consistent with impact. 

The engine and the propeller hub with one blade attached were found inverted a few feet from the main wreckage. The attached blade curled 360 degrees, creating a hook-like shape. The opposing propeller blade was located 54 feet at 011 degrees from the main wreckage. The blade exhibited blade tip twisting/curling and the chordwise scratches or striations.

The engine was separated from the airframe and exhibited signatures of thermal and impact damage. 

Mechanical continuity was established throughout the engine and valve train when the propeller was rotated by hand. Thumb compression was obtained on all six cylinders when the propeller was rotated by hand.

The top and bottom spark plugs exhibited signatures consistent with normal operation. The spark plugs exhibited varying degrees of coloration within the electrode area consistent with corrosion and from the post impact fire.

Both magnetos remained attached to the engine via their respectable mounts. When the crankshaft was rotated, both magnetos produced spark on all ignition leads in proper firing order.

The fuel injection servo was separated from the engine. The fuel inlet screen was obstructed with contaminants which were a result of the thermal damage. 

The induction system remained intact and exhibited impact damage. The exhaust risers remained attached to their respective cylinders and sustained thermal and impact damage. The exhaust muffler and the outflow pipe exhibited signatures consistent with thermal and impact damage.

No evidence of any preexisting mechanical malfunction was found that would have precluded normal operation.

For further information, see the Accident Site, Airframe, and Engine Exam Summary Report within the public docket for this accident.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

An autopsy was performed on the pilot October 12, 2015, by the El Dorado Pathology Medical Group, Placerville, California. The cause of death was determined to be "extensive blunt force thoracic trauma".

The FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma performed toxicology on specimens from the pilot. Specimens tested negative for carbon monoxide and ethanol in blood. No presence of amphetamines, opiates, marihuana, cocaine, phencyclidine, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, antidepressants, and antihistamines was detected in the blood.

NTSB Identification: WPR16FA007
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, October 10, 2015 in South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aircraft: BEECH G35, registration: N4485D
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 October 10, 2015 about 1735 Pacific daylight time, a Beech G35, N4485D, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near South Lake Tahoe, California. The pilot, who was the registered owner of the airplane, and the passenger sustained fatal injuries. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as a personal cross-country flight. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The flight originated from Lake Tahoe Airport (TVL), South Lake Tahoe, about 1733.


Several witnesses reported that shortly after takeoff from runway 18, the airplane sounded as it was not producing adequate power. One witness reported strong downdrafts in the area. As it exited the airport boundaries on the runway heading, the airplane made a right turn followed by a left turn. It climbed to about 100 feet above ground level (agl) in an excessively high pitch up attitude, and continued to fly towards the rising terrain. Shortly thereafter, after it crossed the ridgeline, the airplane entered a nose and left-wing low attitude and impacted the back yard of a residence. A post crash fire ensued.





SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. (CBS/AP) – Two people who were killed when the single-engine plane they were in crashed next to a house in South Lake Tahoe shortly after takeoff have been identified.

Conrad Yu, 73, of Oakley and Mary Choy, 66, of San Francisco were killed on October 10 when the Beechcraft G35 Bonanza crashed and sparked a fire on a side of the house.

The two-story house is less than a mile from the airport, in a semi-rural neighborhood surrounded by pine trees. The crash occurred about 5:40 p.m.

Maja Smith, an aviation accident investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board, said the plane contained only Yu and Choy.

Ginger Nicolay-Davis, a real estate agent who manages the house as a vacation rental, said two people and a dog inside the house got out safely. No one on the ground was hurt.

“They were sitting there relaxing in the living room and they heard what sounded like a tree had fallen,” she said. “They assumed a tree had taken out a power line.”

She said fire damage to the house is significant, but it could have been worse given the woodsy location.

She said the pair inside the home, which included San Francisco playwright Rod McFadden, rushed outside without shoes and headed back to San Francisco. McFadden was in town for a three-day word and performance festival on the shores of South Lake Tahoe.

The Federal Aviation Administration, along with the National Transportation Safety Board, investigated the crash.      





SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board officials are continuing their investigation of Saturday’s [Oct. 10] single-engine plane crash near Lake Tahoe Airport. A spokesperson for the National Transportation Safety Board said the organization is currently in the “very early stages” of its analysis. National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration officials were at the crash site Sunday, Oct. 11, and reportedly completed their initial on-scene assessment of the crash. The National Transportation Safety Board is continuing to gather facts regarding the incident. NTSB spokesman said investigations typically take up to a year to conclude.


As of Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 13, the El Dorado County Coroner’s Office had not released the identities of the two crash victims.

The crash is the fourth fatal incident of its kind involving a single-engine aircraft near Lake Tahoe Airport since 2009. Previous National Transportation Safety Board accident reports of other incidents cited trouble with compensating for altitude, proper air/fuel mixtures and mechanical failure. A fifth non-fatal crash involved high winds. A cause for Saturday’s crash has yet to be determined.

The incident occurred around 5:30 p.m. on Saturday in a South Lake Tahoe neighborhood near Pioneer Trail and Lake Tahoe Airport.

“We were standing in our living room having a conversation,” South Lake Tahoe resident Stacey Ramirez said.

She and her husband, William, live three houses down from the crash site and were at home at the time of the incident with their 9-year-old son.

“We heard the plane come in very low, which is not unusual,” she said, explaining their close proximity to Lake Tahoe Airport.

“It was horrible noise,” Ramirez explained when describing the metallic sound of the crash. “We were thinking that something happened down on Pioneer with a motorcycle or a truck. It didn’t really click that it was a [plane] crash.”

Officials on scene reported two fatalities. Both were in the plane at the time of the crash. No one on the ground was injured. The single engine Beech 35 Bonanza crashed shortly after takeoff, killing the pilot and a passenger.

The crash site is located at 1650 Tionontati St. On-scene witnesses said the aircraft clipped the top of a tree before striking the ground near a residence. Portions of a nearby two-story vacation property caught fire as a result of the crash.

A portion of the plane’s tail broke off during the crash and remained stuck in a tree after the fire. The vacation property had substantial scorch marks on the exterior of the building as a result of the crash. There appeared to be no structural damage to the building. Portions of the roof of the residence were also damaged. The fire was contained within a roughly half-acre of a heavily treed property.

According to the Associated Press, Ginger Nicolay-Davis, a real estate agent who manages the vacation home, said two guests were in the home at the time of the crash with their dog and escaped safely.

“They were sitting there relaxing in the living room and they heard what sounded like a tree had fallen,” Nicolay-Davis told the AP. “They assumed a tree had taken out a power line.”

The Associated Press also reported that one of the guests in the home was San Francisco playwright Rod McFadden. He was in town for a festival in South Lake Tahoe. Both guests went back to San Francisco following the crash. Nicolay-Davis described the fire damage to the home as significant.

Fire crews from the U.S. Forest Service, Lake Valley and South Lake Tahoe fire departments and Cal Fire all responded to the blaze, along with members of the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office.

One witness reported sizable flames visible from Pioneer Trail as he passed by shortly after the crash. Fire crews were able to contain the fire in a short period of time.

Ramirez estimated that the fire was out by 6:30 p.m. and commended local response.

Sheriff’s Office officials remained on scene overnight Saturday to oversee the crash site until Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board officials arrived.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer confirmed the two fatalities and aircraft model — typically a six-seat single-engine aircraft.

Combined with the three previous incidents, there have been nine plane crash fatalities near the Lake Tahoe Airport since 2009. A 2012 crash killed five people on board. A 2013 incident killed the pilot, but included one survivor.

El Dorado County Coroner’s Office said there was no timeline for the release of the victims’ names. Due to the condition of remains, dental records will need to be used for identification.


http://www.tahoedailytribune.com



Two people died Saturday night when the plane they were in crashed just after takeoff from Lake Tahoe Airport.

The names of the people and their hometowns are unknown.

El Dorado County sheriff’s Sgt. Paul Hadjes told Lake Tahoe News the plane had landed at the South Lake Tahoe airport, waited a bit and then took off. The crash occurred about 5:40pm.

The Beechcraft 35 Bonanza tail number was too charred to completely read.

Airport officials on Oct. 10 had yet to listen to recordings of the take off or any chatter after the plane was in the air to ascertain if the pilot radioed any trouble. The airport does not have a tower.

National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration officials will be on scene Saturday. People will be guarding the site all night.

Trees sheered off by the plane are visible behind the house that was hit on Tionontati Street on the outskirts of South Lake Tahoe. This is due east of the airport.

One woman said this is not the typical flight pattern planes use to take off from the South Lake Tahoe airport.

While it was windy for much of the day, by dusk it had calmed down. The sky was clear.

The bulk of the debris from the plane was to the right of the house. This is what caught fire. The cockpit was not recognizable.

Other pieces of the plane were in the backyard and some was still high in a tree well above the two-story house.

Roommates Bryce Tye and Matthew O’Hara were on top of Echo Summit when they saw the explosion that cast a large plume of white smoke that was followed by black smoke. They raced home thinking it was their house that was hit, but it wasn’t.

One neighbor said the lot is cursed because this is the second time in 10 years a house there has burned.

The two people in the vacation rental escaped with their dog unharmed.

“The guy was sitting in the living room having a glass of wine when they hear what they think is a tree falling. They see fire and thought it hit an electrical line. They look out and saw it was an airplane,” Ginger Nicolay-Davis told Lake Tahoe News. She manages the property for the owners who live in Hollister.

The renter was one of the playwrights who was to perform Oct. 10 at Valhalla as part of the WordWave literary festival. He left the house without shoes and didn’t make it to the performance.

The extent of damage to the house is unknown at this time.

Story, comments and photos: http://www.laketahoenews.net





























A portion of the plane’s tail broke off during the crash and remained stuck in a tree after the fire.