Thursday, December 8, 2016

Cub Crafters PA-18-150, Wyoming Wool Growers Association and operated by United States Department of Agriculture, N444GB: Fatal accident occurred December 07, 2016 in Basin, Big Horn County, Wyoming

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

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: 


FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Casper FSFO-04

NTSB Identification: CEN17FA050
14 CFR Public Aircraft
Accident occurred Wednesday, December 07, 2016 in Basin, WY
Aircraft: CUB CRAFTERS PA18, registration: N444GB
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious.

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

On December 7, 2016, about 1015 mountain standard time, a Cub Crafters PA18-150 airplane, N444GB, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain while maneuvering 15 miles southwest of Basin, Wyoming. The commercial pilot was fatally injured and commercial-certificated crewmember was seriously injured. The airplane was owned by the Wyoming Wool Growers Association and operated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a public use flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) flight plan had been filed for the flight. The animal damage management flight departed Worland Municipal Airport (WRL), Worland, Wyoming, about 0800.

According to the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), Wildlife Services ground crew that supported the flight, the airplane arrived in the area around 0820 for animal damage management. The crew members were located west, north, and east of the area where the airplane was operating. Crew members had visual contact, voice communication, and/or audio contact (they could hear the airplane operating) until about 1000.

About 1015, the ground crew attempted to contact the airplane to change the area of focus without a response from the airplane. The ground crew tried multiple locations and means to contact the airplane without success. At 1100 the agency search and rescue plan was activated and about 1330 the airplane was located by aerial search and rescue teams.

The wreckage was located within steep hilly terrain, just below a ridge line that extended from northeast to southwest, increasing in elevation to the south. The airplane wreckage included the fuselage, empennage, both wings, and the engine and propeller assembly. The airplane came to rest nearly vertical with the right wing uphill and the left wing downhill. The propeller separated from the engine and was directly beneath the wreckage.

Weather at WRL, located 28 miles southeast of the accident site was recorded at 0953 as wind 340 degrees at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, sky condition 6,000 feet overcast, temperature minus 13 degrees Celsius (C), dewpoint temperature minus 18 degrees C, altimeter setting 30.57 inches of mercury. Weather at the Yellowstone Regional Airport (COD), Cody, Wyoming, located 38 miles northwest of the accident site was recorded at 0953 as wind 350 degrees at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, sky condition 6,500 feet overcast, temperature minus 13 degrees Celsius (C), dewpoint temperature minus 19 degrees C, altimeter setting 30.35 inches of mercury.

Grant Belden Family Fund

The true measure of a man is his honesty, integrity, and character; in this regard, Grant Belden was a giant of a man. Grant was tragically killed December 7, 2016, on his 34th birthday, while performing work duties and doing one of the things he enjoyed the most; flying. Grant was an amazing father, husband, brother, son, and friend. He leaves behind a wife, and two young sons. All donations will go to the young family.

Read more here:

The Big Horn County Coroner’s Office has released the names of two men — identified as predator control specialists — on board a small plane that went down Wednesday near Otto. 

Grant Belden, 34, of Thermopolis, died at the scene.

Miles Hausner, 56, of Worland, survived the crash. He was taken to Billings for medical attention after rescuers pulled him from the plane.

Their plane crashed Wednesday morning in a rugged, remote area southwest of the Wardell Reservoir off of the Dorsey Creek Road in southern Big Horn County.

Rescue and recovery efforts were hazardous and difficult, according to the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Office, due to the rough terrain and frigid weather.

The National Transportation Safety Board continues to investigate the scene. The cause of the crash has not been determined.

“Our hearts go out to the Belden family and we hope Mr. Hausner has a speedy recovery,” the Sheriff’s Office said Friday.

“We would like to thank everyone for their concern and ask that you leave the families in peace at this time”.

One person died and another was injured on Wednesday morning after their small plane crashed in a remote area south of Otto, the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Office said.

Sheriff Ken Blackburn said the two people were “predator control specialists” who’d flown out of the Worland airport earlier in the day.

Blackburn said his office received information that a plane might have gone down in Big Horn County shortly before 11:30 a.m. Responders from multiple agencies ultimately found the specialists trapped inside the wreckage of their plane in a rugged area southwest of the Wardel Reservoir area, Blackburn said in a post to his agency’s Facebook page.

One of the plane’s occupants was found to have died at the scene while the other was taken to Billings for medical treatment, Blackburn said. The sheriff did not release any further information about the occupants on Wednesday night, as their family members had not yet been notified.

He said the Big Horn County Coroner will be responsible for determining the cause of death.

The sheriff added that medical personnel from the REACH Air Medical Service provided “outstanding, immediate medical services” until ground resources could arrive and extricate the occupants.

“The rough terrain and bitter cold weather made rescue efforts hazardous and more difficult,” Blackburn said Wednesday night. “Recovery efforts are continuing at this time.”

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have been notified and Blackburn said personnel from his office are providing security at the site until investigators arrive.

He described the crash site as being off of Dorsey Creek Road, also known as U.S. Bureau of Land Management Road 1103. Much of the land in the area is federally owned and managed by the BLM.

Many agencies and entities helped Big Horn County with the search, including the Park County Search and Rescue Unit.


No comments: