Saturday, December 31, 2016

Luscombe 8A, N2889K (and) Piper PA-28R-200 Arrow II, N4407T: Fatal accident occurred December 31, 2016 near Aero Country Airport (T31), McKinney, Collin County, Texas

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

FAA Flight Standards District Office: North Texas


Robert Navar: http://registry.faa.gov/N4407T

CEN17FA063A Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf 

NTSB Identification: CEN17FA063A
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, December 31, 2016 in McKinney, TX
Aircraft: PIPER PA28R, registration: N4407T
Injuries: 3 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 December 31, 2016, about 1725 central standard time, a single-engine Piper PA-28R-200 airplane, N4407T, and a single engine Luscombe 8A airplane, N2889K, were destroyed when they collided in mid-air over McKinney, Texas, about one-half mile east of the Aero Country Airport (T31), McKinney, Texas. The private rated pilot, the sole occupant, onboard N4407T was fatally injured, and the commercial rated pilot and a passenger onboard N2889K were fatally injured. Both airplanes were owned and operated by private individuals. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. Both flights were operated under the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flights, and no flight plans had been filed. N2889K had departed T31 just prior to the accident, and N4407T departed T31 at an unknown time.

A preliminary review of radar information revealed N4407T approached the airport from the northwest, before turning east over the airport at an altitude of 1,800 ft. A transponder signal was not received from N2889K; however, it appeared that the airplane had departed T31's runway 17 and headed north, in a downwind traffic pattern. Preliminary information indicated both airplanes were based at T31.

Several witnesses reported seeing the accident, including airplanes flying low and close together prior to the accident.

T31 is a privately owned airport open to the public. The airport features a single runway, oriented 17/35. The airport is non-towered and pilots are to use the CTAF (common traffic advisory frequency) for communications. The pilots were not in contact with an air traffic control facility/tower, nor required to be. 

N2889K impacted a residential street and came to rest in a near vertical attitude. Evidence of fuel was present at the accident site, and there was no post-crash fire.

N4407T impacted an open concrete area of a storage facility about one-quarter mile, east from N2889K. The wreckage was scattered just beyond the initial ground impact point and came to rest near storage lockers. A post-crash fire consumed a portion of the wreckage. 


At 1653, the automated weather observation facility located at the McKinney National Airport (TKI), McKinney, Texas, about 8 miles east of the accident site, recorded wind from 200 degrees at 3 knots, 10 miles visibility, and a clear sky.

Gregory A. Barber: http://registry.faa.gov/N2889K 

CEN17FA063B  Aviation Accident Preliminary Report -  National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

NTSB Identification: CEN17FA063B
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, December 31, 2016 in McKinney, TX
Aircraft: LUSCOMBE 8, registration: N2889K
Injuries: 3 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 December 31, 2016, about 1725 central standard time, a single-engine Piper PA-28R-200 airplane, N4407T, and a single engine Luscombe 8A airplane, N2889K, were destroyed when they collided in mid-air over McKinney, Texas, about one-half mile east of the Aero Country Airport (T31), McKinney, Texas. The private rated pilot, the sole occupant, onboard N4407T was fatally injured, and the commercial rated pilot and a passenger onboard N2889K were fatally injured. Both airplanes were owned and operated by private individuals. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. Both flights were operated under the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flights, and no flight plans had been filed. N2889K had departed T31 just prior to the accident, and N4407T departed T31 at an unknown time.

A preliminary review of radar information revealed N4407T approached the airport from the northwest, before turning east over the airport at an altitude of 1,800 ft. A transponder signal was not received from N2889K; however, it appeared that the airplane had departed T31's runway 17 and headed north, in a downwind traffic pattern. Preliminary information indicated both airplanes were based at T31.

Several witnesses reported seeing the accident, including airplanes flying low and close together prior to the accident.

T31 is a privately owned airport open to the public. The airport features a single runway, oriented 17/35. The airport is non-towered and pilots are to use the CTAF (common traffic advisory frequency) for communications. The pilots were not in contact with an air traffic control facility/tower, nor required to be.

N2889K impacted a residential street and came to rest in a near vertical attitude. Evidence of fuel was present at the accident site, and there was no post-crash fire.

N4407T impacted an open concrete area of a storage facility about one-quarter mile, east from N2889K. The wreckage was scattered just beyond the initial ground impact point and came to rest near storage lockers. A post-crash fire consumed a portion of the wreckage.

At 1653, the automated weather observation facility located at the McKinney National Airport (TKI), McKinney, Texas, about 8 miles east of the accident site, recorded wind from 200 degrees at 3 knots, 10 miles visibility, and a clear sky.

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.






Barber Patrol - Greg and Tim Barber


Robert Navar, a 48-year-old Frisco businessman and father of two teenage daughters, was piloting the Piper PA-28R-200 Arrow II.

Tim Barber (center) sits next to his dad, Greg "Spanky" Barber, on a cliff at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.



On the last day of 2016, a father and son strapped themselves into a two-seat plane and took off from a Collin County airport before sunset to mark the end of the year with one more flight.

It would be the last for Greg and 18-year-old Tim Barber of Farmersville.

On Saturday evening, their small Luscombe plane crashed into the southbound lanes of Custer Road near Virginia Parkway in McKinney after a midair collision with another plane near Aero Country Airport in unincorporated Collin County.

The second plane — piloted by 48-year-old businessman Robert Navar of Frisco — burned as it fell into a nearby storage facility. All three men were killed.

"The Barbers just like to fly," said Kyle Odom, a family friend. "They were doing what they loved together."

Eyes to the sky

A retired lieutenant colonel, 55-year-old Greg "Spanky" Barber made a career of flying in the Air Force for more than two decades as a Cold War alert and combat pilot and an instructor. Friends say he was the last pilot selected to fly the SR-71 Blackbird — one of the world's fastest manned aircraft — before the program was canceled in the 1990s.

"If a plane was flying over, his eyes went to the sky. He loved to fly. And Tim loved to fly," said Odom, who took over leadership of Boy Scout Troop 310 in Farmersville from Barber in late 2015. He was visiting the family the day of the crash and remained after the news broke.

He said Greg, a father of four and husband to Mandy, had a quick laugh and a big smile.

Keith Clifton, a retired Air Force captain and Greg Barber's business partner, said the two "were best friends."

"A lot of people would say they were his best friend," Clifton said of Barber. "That's the kind of guy he was."

Tim Barber was home on winter break from the U.S. Air Force Academy. He planned to follow in his father's footsteps as a pilot. His older brother Ben also is an Air Force Academy graduate.

An Eagle Scout, Tim graduated as salutatorian from Farmersville High School in 2016. He ran cross-country and played tennis and trombone in the high school band.

"So much wisdom for a high school kid," Odom said.

He recalled the story of how, after taking charge of the Boy Scout troop, he gave a pep talk to a discouraged Scout. Odom asked Tim — then a new Eagle Scout — if he had anything to add.

"He said, 'You know, that's all good what Mr. Odom said. But you've got to remember to have fun. Because if you're not having fun while you're doing this, then why are you doing it?'" Odom recalled. "I thought, what a profound thing to say."

Third-generation pilot

Navar's family declined to comment Wednesday for this story but said in a written statement that the native Texan was a dedicated community member and third-generation pilot.

"His love of aviation was fostered on the laps of his grandfather and father flying for both business and pleasure," Navar's wife, Brooke Navar, wrote in an email, adding that her husband's uncle owned several aircraft and mentored him as a pilot and mechanic.

Navar and his wife were college sweethearts. They have two teenage daughters.

"Robert was already training the next generation, as well as introducing many local youth to the joy of private piloting," she wrote.

Clifton taught Greg Barber how to fly as a student pilot at Reese Air Force Base in Lubbock. That's where Barber was dubbed "Spanky," after the Our Gang character — a nickname that followed him throughout his military career. Clifton was one of the first to receive a call about the collision Saturday evening.

"Spanky loved his family, his friends, his community, his country, and he truly loved to fly," he said.

Investigation

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident and its probable cause, which could take up to a year to determine, spokesman Eric Weiss said.

Since Aero Country Airport opened in the 1970s on farmland just west of McKinney, homes have popped up east and south of the property, and an industrial area borders the airport to the north.

The airport does not have an air traffic control tower, and pilots are required to announce landings and takeoffs via radio. Weiss said determining whether the pilots were in communication before the accident is one goal of the investigation.

"It was a great day to fly," Clifton said.

MORE INFO

Donate: https://www.gofundme.com/barber-patrol


Source: http://www.dallasnews.com

Timothy Barber

Greg Barber


An Air Force Academy cadet and his father, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel, died Saturday in a midair plane collision just outside McKinney, Texas, according to the academy.

Cadet 4th Class Timothy Barber died Saturday evening in a private aircraft mid-air collision 35 miles north of Dallas while on leave from the academy, according to an academy statement. His father, Greg Barber, 55, of Farmersville, Texas, also died in the crash, said Keith Clifton, a family friend and spokesman.

"This is a tragedy for the Barbers and for those of us in their Air Force family. Our thoughts are with them as well as with their friends and loved ones," said academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson. "This is profoundly sad news for all of us at the Air Force Academy. We stand ready to support Cadet Barber's family and also have resources at the ready to help cadets and staff to weather our loss."

The Dallas Morning News reported that two aircraft collided near the Aero Country Airport in unincorporated Collin County shortly before 5:30 p.m. Saturday with one plane crashing at a storage facility and the other crashing on a roadway. At least three people died in the crash, the paper said.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating what caused the two planes to collide.

Clifton, who also was a business partner of Greg Barber, said the older Barber was "showing Tim the ropes" of flying when the crash happened.

"He was on takeoff making his first turn when the other plane clipped his tail. Once the tail came off, there was no flying and he crashed almost immediately onto the roadway. The other plane crashed a few seconds later into a storage facility,"

There is no control tower to guide traffic at the small airport, and pilots are required to announce takeoffs and landings by radio, FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford told the Dallas Morning News in an email. She told the Fort Worth-Star Telegram that neither aircraft was in contact with air traffic control and both were flying under visual flight rules.

Clifton had been Greg Barber's Air Force flight instructor and his commander. "He was an elite pilot who had been assigned to fly the B-52, the SR-71 Blackbird before the program was canceled and the U-2."

Greg Barber had been assigned to Air Force bases in Texas, Washington, California and Germany as well as a military post in Langley, Va., before retiring after a more than 20-year career as a pilot, flight instructor and several other roles, Clifton said. He joined Clifton as an investor and founder of Tenant Tracker Inc., a Texas company that does background checks on potential apartment tenants, teachers and others, and worked for the company for 10 years as vice president.

"He was my best friend," Clifton said. "His family is more than a cornerstone; they are the glue that pulls a community together. I met so many people because of him. Everybody knows them for their friendship, loyalty and love of the community and country. We need to continue the mission they were on."

Clifton said Tim Barber was "following in his dad's footsteps. He was in a tight race to be the top graduate of his high school and ended up as salutatorian. He had the same kind of personality as his father. Their personality infected others with friendship, loyalty and patriotism."

Tracy Carman, a longtime family friend, described Greg Barber as "one of the few people who, regardless of rank, treated people exactly the same. He didn't care whether you were enlisted or an officer. He was always happy and had a kind word for everybody. They were a wonderful family. Everyone they met was a friend."

Greg Barber had been a longtime scoutmaster in the Boy Scouts and saw all three of his sons - Franklyn, Ben (an Air Force Academy graduate now serving as a pilot in California) and Tim - earn the organization's highest rank, Eagle Scout.

Greg and Tim Barber also are survived by Mandy Barber, Greg's wife and Tim's mother, and Becca Barber, Greg's daughter and Tim's sister.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Source:   http://gazette.com

Gregory and Tim Barber 

MCKINNEY -- Two communities are mourning the loss of three people after two small planes collided mid-air over McKinney Saturday.

Gregory Barber, 55,  a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel and his son 18-year old Tim Barber of Farmersville were two of the victims who died.

Longtime friend and business partner Keith Clifton says Barber had just taken off from Aero Country Airport on Saturday and was entering the first turn when his single-engine aircraft was struck in the tail.

"He was an excellent and very experienced pilot," Clifton told News 8. "Just wonderful people, the glue that holds communities together."

The elder Barber had been a scout master in Collin County with Boy Scouts of America for decades, Clifton said. He added Tim Barber was an Eagle Scout, having entered the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado after graduating as Salutatorian from Farmersville High School in 2016. 

Family friends confirmed to News 8 that the pilot of the other aircraft was Robert Navar, 48, of Frisco.

Remnants of Navar's aircraft was removed from a storage facility by the National Transportation Safety Board on Sunday.

Story and video:   http://www.cbs19.tv

MCKINNEY -- Two communities are mourning the loss of three people after two small planes collided mid-air over McKinney Saturday.

Gregory Barber, 55,  a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel and his son 18-year old Tim Barber of Farmersville were two of the victims who died.

Longtime friend and business partner Keith Clifton says Barber had just taken off from Aero Country airport on Saturday and was entering the first turn when his single-engine aircraft was struck in the tail.   The plane crashed into the southbound lanes of Custer Road.

"He was an excellent and very experienced pilot," Clifton told News 8. "Just wonderful people, the glue that holds communities together."

The elder Barber was a scout master in Collin County with Boy Scouts of America for decades, Clifton said.  He added Tim Barber was an Eagle Scout, having entered the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado after graduating as salutatorian from Farmersville High School in 2016. 

Family friends confirmed to News 8 that the pilot of the other aircraft was Robert Navar, 48, of Frisco.

Story and video:  http://www.kens5.com

MCKINNEY (CBSDFW.COM) – Two of the victims who died in Saturday’s midair plane collision in McKinney were identified as authorities continue to investigate the incident.

The two men were identified as Tim and Greg Barber by a family spokesperson.

Keith Clifton, the family spokesperson, said he knew the father and son well as his friendship with Greg Barber spans three decades

“He was an extremely accomplished pilot. It’s an accident. They call it that for a reason,” said Clifton. “A plane just won’t fly without his tail. He got clipped by the other plane. It’s a tragedy for everyone on that.”

Clifton said Tim Barber was on Christmas break from the Air Force Academy. He also said the father and son were close and lived every minute of their lives to the fullest.

“At the end of the day, the story of love. They were doing what they love,” said Clifton. “They love their community and their family.”

The third victim who died in the plane crash has not been identified yet.

The National Transportation Safety Board became involved with the investigation according to the Federal Aviation Administration as officials look into what could have caused the two planes to hit each other in the air.

Story and video:  http://dfw.cbslocal.com




Investigators expect it will be some time before they know all the details of a midair collision that ended in 2 planes crashing and 3 people dead Saturday evening.

Witnesses said the planes took off from the Aero Country Airport and collided while turning over a crowded area of McKinney.

One of the small private aircraft crashed into Custer Road, shutting down the street for much of the night until investigators were able to move the wreckage.

The other plane crashed and caught fire inside Uncle Bob’s Self Storage, where the National Transportation Safety Board and McKinney Police spent most of Saturday combing through the charred wreckage.

Two of the victims have been identified as Gregory Barber and Tim Barber, NBC 5 has learned. The third victim hasn't been identified.

An NTSB representative confirmed that no one on the ground was injured during the crash.

Many tenants of the storage facility waited nervously outside to see if their units had been damaged in the wreck, but most said the loss of life at the site was a much more disturbing realization.

"The material things can be replaced, but someone has to answer for the people,” tenant Erik Downs said.

Investigators finally removed the second plane just before 4 p.m., and tenants were allowed to go back into the facility as police cleared the scene.


Source: http://www.nbcdfw.com



At least 3 people are confirmed dead after two small planes crashed mid-air, Saturday afternoon, spreading wreckage across two sites. Twisted remains of the planes were at the intersection of Custer and Virginia in McKinney, and at a storage complex, a few blocks away.

The FAA says the small planes collided near Aero Country Airport in 5:30 pm. Both aircrafts were flying under Visual Flight Rules and were not in contact with air traffic control at the time of the collision.

Fox 4 spoke with Larry Ferracioli and his daughter, Natalie. They were playing volleyball in their front yard when they say they saw the two planes taking off together from the two Aero Country runways. Larry says the planes were banking a left turn when one of the aircraft slammed into the other. One of the planes fell straight down into the street. The other crashed at the storage unit facility, which sparked a small fire.

"Two planes were right on top of each other when they came out of the bank, starting to level out right above, just past our house,” said Ferracioli, “The outside plane just came in and collided with the inside plane. When the collision happened, it sounded like an automobile accident head on."

Custer Road will remain closed from Virginia to Bedford as police continue to investigate and clear the scene.


Story and video:   http://www.fox4news.com



Three people are dead following a midair collision near a small airport in McKinney, according to a McKinney police spokesperson.  

The crash happened near the 500 block of North Custer Road on Saturday evening, according to a Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson. The two planes collided near the Aero Country Airport.

One of the planes crashed onto a nearby road, while the other crashed into a storage business, a fire official said.

"They were making a turn and one of the planes slid into the other," said witness Rodney Livermore. "You heard a loud crash and bang. One of them came straight down. The other one had a little control, but it was coming down. There was no stopping it."

The Aero Country Airport does not have an air traffic control tower, and pilots are required to announce landings and takeoffs via radio, aviation officials said. 

North Custer Road is closed from Virginia Parkway to Bedford Lane, and it is unclear when it'll reopen, McKinney police said. 

The cause of the collision is under investigation. 


Source:   http://www.nbcdfw.com




Three people were killed after two small aircraft collided mid-air near a small airport just outside of McKinney Saturday evening. 

The aircraft collided near Aero Country Airport in unincorporated Collin County before crashing in McKinney.

Authorities did not say late Saturday whether all of the victims killed were on the aircraft or  on the ground. 

One plane crashed at a storage facility at Custer Road and Virginia Parkway. The other crashed in the middle of Custer Road near Bedford Lane. 

McKinney Police Sgt. Ana Shelley said police and fire responded to the crash at 5:27 p.m. The Federal Aviation Administration, which is on scene, and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating. 

Custer Road is expected to remain closed from Bristol Drive to Virginia Parkway until further notice. Authorities are asking the public to stay away from the crash scene, which Shelley described as "widespread." Dozens of emergency vehicles were at the scene late Saturday. 

The Aero Country Airport does not have an air traffic control tower, and pilots are required to announce landings and takeoffs via radio, FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said in an email.

Alex Coats, 17, was watching one of the aircraft in flight Saturday evening as a passenger in a friend's car.

"I was just watching the Cessna fly and another plane came out of nowhere and hit the Cessna," said Coats, a McKinney High School student who is in the school's aviation program.

After the aircraft collided, "They both went down in opposite directions," Coats said.

"I was trying to figure out what happened."

Coats said he was at the scene of the crashes before first responders. 

He said he tried calling 911 but the lines were busy. 

The plane at the storage unit struck a boat and caught fire. That's where most of the smoke came from, he said.

He said he saw two bodies in the aircraft that crashed on Custer Road before authorities covered the wreckage.  

Caleb Twitchell, 19, was hanging out with friends in a nearby neighborhood when he saw the two planes crash. "It was like a movie," he said. "It was crazy actually. It was awful."

He said the tail end broke off one plane and it spiraled to the ground. The other plane veared off before crashing into the storage facility, he said.

In a statement late Saturday, McKinney Mayor Brian Loughmiller said "we are devastated over the tragic plane crash that happened this evening near Aero Country Airport. Our condolences go out to the families of those who were involved and we will keep them in our thoughts and prayers in the coming days."

When Aero Country Airport opened in the late 1970s, most of the tracts around it were farmland. 

"There was a dirt road," said BJ Boyle, treasurer of the property owners association, told The Dallas Morning News in 2014. "There was nobody."

Though Aero Country is privately owned, it's a public-use facility, meaning that anyone can use its landing strip. Pilots can fuel up or seek maintenance on site.

The airport sits on unincorporated land in Collin County, though some neighbors are part of McKinney. Homes have popped up just east and south of the property, and an industrial area borders the airport to the north.

One subdivision east of the airport called Virginia Hills is separated by a piece of land 500 feet wide.

Since opening, Aero Country has reported two fatalities, government records show. In 1997, a pilot died of severe burns after losing control of his plane, which crashed into a line of trees. And in 1983, a passenger died of a fatal head injury after exiting the plane while the engine was still running and walking into the arc of a propeller.  

Story and video:   http://www.dallasnews.com



MCKINNEY -- Three people are dead after two small planes collided mid-air over McKinney.

The Federal Aviation Administration confirms the crash happened near Aero Country Airport, in the 500 block of North Custer Road near Virginia, just after 5:30 p.m. Saturday.  

"Both aircraft were flying under Visual Flight Rules and were not in contact with air traffic control at the time of the collision," Lynn Lunsford with the FAA said.  

McKinney police described the scene as "widespread". 

WFAA viewer Chad Bloemke tells WFAA he was driving north on Custer Road when he saw the two planes collide. One of them came down spiraling nose-first, he said. He said the planes were flying low to the ground, and they crashed in a very populated area. Witnesses say one of the planes crashed in the parking lot of a Home Depot.

Story and video:  http://www.wfaa.com









MCKINNEY (CBSDFW.COM) – McKinney police say three people were killed after two planes collided in the air Saturday.

Police did not release further information on the deceased.

Police say the scene of the crash is at Custer Road and Virginia Parkway.

The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed that two small planes collided near Aero Country Airport shortly after 5:30 p.m.

The FAA says both aircraft were flying under Visual Flight Rules and were not in contact with air traffic control at the time of the collision.

Story and video:  http://dfw.cbslocal.com





MCKINNEY, Texas - There has been three confirmed fatalities after two small planes collided into another near Aero Country Airport near Mckinney, Texas, Federal Aviation Administration said.

The incident was reported about 5:30 p.m.

FAA officials said both aircraft were flying under Visual Flight Rules and were not in contact with air traffic control during the collision. The airport is about 35 miles north of downtown Dallas.

Mckinney police are investigating the scene.

Source:  http://www.click2houston.com

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