Sunday, June 19, 2016

Piper PA-32-260 Cherokee Six N44255: Accident occurred June 19, 2016 at Block Island State Airport (KBID), New Shoreham, Washington County, Rhode Island

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Docket And Docket Items - National Transportation Safety Board:

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Boston Massachusetts

NTSB Identification: ERA16CA218
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, June 19, 2016 in Block Island, RI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/10/2017
Aircraft: PIPER PA32, registration: N44255
Injuries: 6 Uninjured.

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.

According to the pilot, while on final approach to land on a 2,502-ft-long, asphalt runway, he observed another airplane back-taxiing on the runway and then depart. He continued the approach, performed a "normal" full-flaps landing, and the airplane touched down about midfield. During the rollout, he determined that there was insufficient runway remaining to stop and chose to attempt a go-around. The airplane subsequently struck the airport perimeter fence and then a roadway guard rail before it impacted terrain, which resulted in substantial damage to the wings and fuselage. The pilot reported that there were no preaccident malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation. He also stated that the accident might have been prevented by aborting the landing earlier.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's failure to attain the proper touchdown point and the airplane’s subsequent collision with obstacles during an attempted go-around.

A plane carrying up to six members of a family crashed a little after 3 p.m. on Sunday, June 19, but injuries at this point appear to be minimal and non-life-threatening according to people on the scene.

A member of the medical team called the occupants of the plane "very lucky" as they were being treated near the site of the crash.

Numerous fire, rescue and police appeared moments after the crash. Rescue vehicles lined Center Road. At about 3:15 p.m., firefighters were trying to extinguish the burning plane.

It is not known if the plane was attempting to land or take off at the time of the accident or what the cause of the accident was. The fence at the end of the airport's runway was damaged, looking as though the plane had crashed through it.

UPDATED: At about 4 p.m., the occupants of the plane were surveying the wreckage and thanking the emergency personnel staff that had shown up on scene to respond to the accident. Some of the occupants that had lost their shoes in the crash were given shoes being worn by the health care staff of the Block Island Medical Center. A little after 4 p.m., the occupants of the plane were walking to the airport on their own and were then headed to a ferry that would take them home. No one was transported to the Medical Center. A little after 4 p.m., the scene of the accident was largely cleared.

According to one person on scene, the plane was attempting to land when another plane was in or near the flight path. The plane then changed course and apparently the wings clipped the fence that borders the Block Island Airport. It crashed into the brush on the other side of Center Road.

Original article can be found here:

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WPRI) – A small plane has crashed on Block Island.

New Shoreham Police Chief Vincent Carlone told Eyewitness News that it happened at about 3 p.m. Sunday when the plane was attempting to land.

It overran the end of the runway, went through a fence, across a street, and down an embankment into thick brush. 

The crash sparked a small brush fire, which was quickly extinguished.

Carlone said there were six people aboard the plane, none of whom were seriously hurt.

About an hour after the crash, Carlone said he did not yet know where the plane was coming from or the identities of those aboard.

Original article can be found here:

BLOCK ISLAND, R.I. —A small plane with six passengers on board crashed into a field off Center Road in Block Island.

According to WLNE, the plane burst into flames when it crashed, causing the fire to spread in the field.

A witness told WLNE the plane appeared to have clipped a fence as it was flying too low during takeoff from Block Island State Airport.

There are no details at this time on the extent of the passengers’ injuries.

Original article can be found here:

A small plane with six passengers on board crashed on to a field in Block Island.

The plane burst into flames when it crashed, causing the fire to spread on the field.

A witness said the plane appeared to have clipped a fence as it was flying too low during takeoff.

There are no details at this time on the extent of the passengers’ injuries.

Original article can be found here: 

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. — Police on Block Island say no one was injured when a small plane overshot the island runway Sunday afternoon and went through a fence on the other side of a road.

“It seems like on landing it overshot the runway, went through the fence across the street and into the bushes,” said police chief Vincent Carlone.

The crash happened about 3 p.m. The passengers appeared to be a family. “Thank God they were all okay,” Carlone said.

The crash caused a small brush fire in the dry vegetation, Carlone said.

The chief said the circumstances of the crash were not that usual for the island airport, which experiences some strong trade winds at times.

Since becoming chief in 2003, “there have been eight plane crashes out there,” he said.

Original article can be found here:

Piper PA-23-150 Apache, N1270P; fatal accident occurred June 19, 2016 near Hayward Executive Airport (KHWD, Alameda County, California -Kathryn's Report

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Oakland FSDO-27

NTSB Identification: WPR16FA126
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, June 19, 2016 in Hayward, CA
Aircraft: PIPER PA 23-150, registration: N1270P
Injuries: 1 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 June 19, 2016, about 1149 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA-23-150, N1270P, was destroyed after colliding with a rail car wash building during an approach to land at Hayward Executive Airport (HWD), Hayward, California. The airline transport pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was registered to the pilot and operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight. The personal flight departed HWD at 1035. 

According to HWD air traffic control personnel, the pilot contacted the facility for landing about 9 nautical miles (nm) southeast of the airport. After issuing instructions and advising the pilot to expect a straight in approach for runway 28L, the pilot reported a loss of power to his left engine and stated that he would not be able to reach the airport. The tower controller suggested a road as a possible landing site, but the pilot elected to attempt a forced landing to a field near a group of rail tracks. A witness, who was about one half mile east of the accident site, observed the airplane enter a steep left banking turn to a westerly heading. Approximately 10 seconds later he heard the accident, which was immediately followed by a plume of dark smoke.

Nearby surveillance video showed the airplane enter a left wing low attitude, which gradually increased as the airplane traversed a set of rail tracks. The forward fuselage and right wing impacted the east wall of a small building. A mist covered the right wing, empennage, and tail as they fell to the ground and a postcrash fire ensued. 

Initial examination of the accident by the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge revealed that the airplane came to rest at the base of a fiberglass rail car wash building about 5 nautical miles from HWD. All major airplane sections were accounted for at the accident site, which was contained within an area 35 feet long and 25 feet wide. The main fuselage came to rest inverted on a heading of 095 degrees magnetic and was destroyed by fire. With the exception of some thermal damage, the empennage was in one piece that remained connected to the fuselage through the airplane's control cables. The right wing was destroyed by fire and its corresponding engine was inverted and covered in soot. The left wing was co-located with the main wreckage in a near vertical position, at rest against the southeastern end of the building. An odor of fuel was detected near the left wingtip. Both sets of propeller blades remained attached to their respective hubs; the left engine blades were in the feathered position and were not damaged. The right engine propeller blades were in a low pitch position and displayed nicks, gouges, and tip curling. 

A wreckage examination will take place at a later date.

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

HAYWARD -- The pilot who died Sunday when his plane crashed into a BART train yard appeared to maneuver the plane away from a neighborhood and may have saved several homes, according to a witness who said he saw the plane moments before its impact.

The Alameda County Coroner's Office on Tuesday identified the pilot as 60-year-old Robert Pursel Jr., of Fremont. Pursel was the registered owner of the Piper PA-23-150 that went down around 2:10 p.m. at BART's Hayward yard. The aircraft was registered out of Wailuku, Hawaii on Maui, according to a Federal Aviation Administration registry.

Pursel worked in technology since the mid-1990s and was a former director of investor relations at MagnaChip Semiconductor, a Korean-based manufacturer of semiconductors, according his page on the LinkedIn social network.

On Sunday, he flew in low while apparently heading to the Fremont airport. The crash happened around four miles east of the Hayward Executive Airport, FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said.

A San Jose man who was at a nearby Hayward market on Sunday afternoon said it appeared the pilot was trying to avoid crashing into homes.

"It wasn't sputtering," said Tom Lynch, 37. "It looked almost as it was on a final approach for landing but turning and trying to avoid houses. He banked a couple of times and went around structures. I think the guy is a hero."

Lynch said he saw smoke rise from the crash and the plane caught fire.

Pursel died at the scene, authorities said. They didn't release any information about what may have caused the crash or confirm that the pilot appeared to turn to avoid a residential area.

Pursel, who has worked in technology since the mid-1990s, was a former director of investor relations for San Jose-based Atmel Corp., and handled investor relations and business analysis for Milpitas-based LSI Logic, his LinkedIn page.


HAYWARD (CBS SF) — The pilot of a small plane died after his plane went down on BART tracks in Hayward Sunday, prompting BART to briefly halt service in the area.

The incident was first reported at 11:57 a.m., after fire officials received a report that a Piper PA-23-150 Apache went down near 150 Sandoval Way, according to Hayward fire Capt. Don Nichelson.

The plane went down on tracks near the Hayward Yard, causing a small fire.

No other injuries were reported, Nichelson said.

BART initially stopped service between the South Hayward station and the Fremont station on the Fremont line, according to BART officials.

As of 2:30 p.m., the Union City and Fremont stations have reopened, with a 10-minute delay in the Fremont and Richmond directions, BART officials said.

The incident comes ahead of a major sporting event Sunday at the Oracle Arena in Oakland where thousands of basketball fans are expected at the seventh NBA Finals game between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers at 5 p.m.

Story and audio:

HAYWARD -- A pilot died and BART service was interrupted hours before Game 7 of the NBA Finals on Sunday after a small plane crashed on its tracks, authorities said.

There were no reports of injuries to anyone on the ground, including BART passengers or staff.

The Piper PA-23-150 Apache went down for unknown reasons about four miles east of the Hayward Executive airport, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said. 

The plane crashed around 12:05 p.m. on BART's transfer tracks at its Hayward Yard, spokeswoman Denise Gonzales said, near the area of Whipple Road and Railroad Avenue.

The location is on the border of Hayward and Union City.

Gonzales confirmed the pilot's death. 

Nobody else was on the plane, which caught fire after the crash.

Fire crews from Hayward and Alameda County put it out.

BART stopped its service between the South Hayward and Fremont stations on the Fremont line. 

Trains headed north from Fremont and Union City were stopped at South Hayward and unable to make it to the Coliseum station, the landing spot for fans going to Oracle Arena to see the Golden State Warriors play the Cleveland Cavaliers in a winner-takes-all-showdown for the NBA crown.

The agency made an AC Transit bus bridge available between the stations but did not say how long they think the stations will be closed.

Original article can be found here: 

At least one person has died after a small plane went down and landed on BART tracks in Hayward on Sunday, prompting BART to halt service in the area.

At about 11:57 a.m., fire officials first received a report that a Piper PA-23-150 Apache went down near 150 Sandoval Way, causing a small fire, according to Hayward fire Capt. Don Nichelson.

Aside from the fatality, no other injuries have been reported, Nichelson said.

BART had closed the Union City and the Fremont Bart stations, but they were reopened after 2 p.m. BART is still expecting 10 minute delays between the South Hayward Station and the Fremont Station on the Fremont line, according to BART officials.

BART is asking passengers to find alternate means of transportation and suggests passengers take the AC Transit Buss line 99, which will take them between the South Hayward and Fremont stations.

Original article can be found here:

Spirit Airlines, Airbus A320, N639NK: Incident occurred June 19, 2016 at Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport (KMSP), Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota

Kathryn's Report:


Date: 19-JUN-16
Time: 11:05:00Z
Regis#: N639NK
Aircraft Make: AIRBUS
Aircraft Model: A320
Event Type: Incident
Damage: Minor
Activity: Commercial
Aircraft Operator: NKS-Spirit Airlines
Flight Number: NKS612
FAA Flight Standards District Office  FAA Minneapolis FSDO-15
State: Minnesota


No one was hurt when one commercial airliner bumped into another on the tarmac at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS reporter Brett Hoffland was at the airport and shot video after the incident.

Airport spokesman Patrick Hogan says a Spirit Airlines plane was being backed away from the Concourse E gate and ran into a parked United Airlines jetliner around 7 a.m. Sunday.

Hogan tells the Star Tribune both planes were damaged but no injuries were reported.

He says the United plane had no crew, airport employees or passengers on board.

Story and video:

One commercial airliner bumped into another Sunday morning at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, an official said.

The incident occurred about 6 a.m. when a Spirit Airlines Airbus A320 heading to Chicago was being backed away from the Concourse E gate and ran into a parked United jetliner, said airport spokesman Patrick Hogan.

Both planes were damaged, but no injuries were reported, Hogan said.

The United plane had no crew, airport employees or passengers on board, he said., a commercial airlines tracking website, reports that the flight was canceled. Messages have been left with a Spirit spokesman for information about the incident.

There were delays to other flights in connection with the mishap, one passenger at the airport reported.

Original article can be found here:

Velocity SEFG, N7044Q: Accident occurred Saturday, April 30, 2016 at Worcester Regional Airport (KORH), Worcester County, Massachusetts

Kathryn's Report:

NTSB Identification: ERA16LA177
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 30, 2016 in Worcester, MA
Aircraft: MAHER DANIEL J VELOCITY, registration: N7044Q
Injuries: 2 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 April 30, 2016, about 1556 eastern daylight time, a Velocity SEFG, N7044Q, was substantially damaged during landing at Worcester, Massachusetts. The airline transport rated pilot and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, which originated at Worcester Regional Airport (ORH), Worcester, Massachusetts.

In a statement submitted to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the pilot stated that upon landing, immediately after nose wheel contact, the nose strut collapsed and the airplane skidded on its nose. 

In a telephone interview with National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge, the pilot stated that he had purchased the airplane in November, 2015. There were no preflight anomalies noted before the local area flight, and no mechanical or performance deficiencies before the final full-stop landing. There was no record of any maintenance done on the nose gear casting.

At 1554, the weather recorded at ORH included winds from 160 at 5 knots.

Examination of photographs revealed the airplane rested on the nose landing gear strut with the nose wheel and its mounting trunion separated. The nose wheel remained in the trunion, and the nose gear casting was fractured at the gear mount attach point. The propeller tips were damaged, and parallel slash marks consistent with a propeller strike were visible on the runway surface prior to where the airplane came to rest. The composite airframe structure at the nose landing gear strut attach point was fractured, and punctured the cockpit footwell, which resulted in substantial damage to the airframe. 

The nose gear casting segments were forwarded to the NTSB Materials Laboratory in Washington, DC for examination.

Piper PA-28R-200, FCP1 LLC, N200KR: Incident occurred April 29, 2016 at San Carlos Airport (KSQL), San Mateo County, California

Kathryn's Report:


NTSB Identification: WPR16IA100
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Incident occurred Friday, April 29, 2016 in San Carlos, CA
Aircraft: PIPER PA28, registration: N200KR
Injuries: 2 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 used data provided by various sources and may not have traveled in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft incident report.

On April 29, 2016, about 1530 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA-28-200, N200KR, was not damaged following a power control interruption, and a precautionary landing at the San Carlos Airport (SQL), San Carlos, California. The certified flight instructor (CFI) and the pilot receiving instruction were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the instructional flight, which was being conducted in accordance with Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, and a flight plan was not filed. According to the CFI, the intended destination was Byron, California.

In a telephone interview with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge, the CFI reported that shortly after taking off from runway 30 at SQL and in the initial climb, he was only able to reduce power slightly, and that no further power reduction was possible. The pilot then flew a right hand traffic pattern back to runway 30, and on final approach over the runway threshold fully retarded the mixture control in order to stop the engine. The CFI stated that after landing, the airplane then rolled out with sufficient momentum to exit the runway at an intersecting taxiway. A subsequent inspection of the throttle control revealed that the cable had broken. The cable was taken into custody by a Federal Aviation Administration aviation safety inspector for further examination by the NTSB.

Amid pilot shortage, Piedmont Airlines sweetens deal

Kathryn's Report:

Wanted: a few good pilots.

Facing headwinds in its efforts to recruit new pilots, Piedmont Airlines, the Salisbury-based American Airlines subsidiary, is making an ascent with its incentives for prospective employees.

The regional airline carrier has announced it is now offering a $15,000 signing bonus to new pilots and $5,000 to any employee who refers a pilot prospect who is ultimately hired.

"The pilot supply has been somewhat constrained as of late the past couple of years, and it’s kind of reverberating through the regional airline sector," said Lyle Hogg, Piedmont's president and CEO. “We’ve kind of gotten through the surplus pilots over the last couple years, so now we’re starting to feel the pinch.”

Such deal-sweeteners are little more than a temporary fix because they don't get to the root of the problem, said Capt. Paul Ryder, the resource coordinator for the Air Line Pilots Association and a pilot himself.

“The bonuses are short-lived and it’s not sustainable going forward in terms of recruitment and retention," Ryder said.

Carriers that put forward better compensation packages, career-advancement opportunities and a comfortable work-life package aren't experiencing any shortages, he added.

And then there's the dispute over whether a shortage exists at all.

"We are staying away from the pilot shortage issue because we don't have any data to support whether there is a shortage or not," said Ed Smith, a professor at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and one of the top airline industry researchers. "What is badly needed is a pilot supply study but nobody has been willing to fund it."

What is known: Regional airlines, such as Piedmont, say they have been facing a dearth of applicants in recent years.

Two regional operators, Republic Airways and SeaPort Airlines, filed for bankruptcy earlier this year. Both cited a shortage of pilots.

The industry attributes the lack of new pilots in the pipeline to regulations passed in the wake of 2010 legislation that significantly increased the amount of training that new pilots need. Now, first officers, also known as co-pilots, need 1,500 hours of flight time instead of 250.

A four-year degree can cost around $130,000. For a job that pays as little as $20,000 in the first year, the expense and years of training just aren't worth it, critics say.

Pay is not the problem, Hogg contended. With the bonus, the first-year pay jumps to nearly $50,000, he said. The company also offers a tuition-reimbursement package.

As he sees it, smaller airlines are facing an issue 15 years in the making.

"It’s really an industry-perception issue that really goes back to 9/11. It’s starting to turn around. But it’s really up to encouraging these young pilots to get a four-year college and start accumulating enough hours," Hogg said.

The employment struggle comes as Piedmont, one of 10 regionals that fly under the American Eagle banner, seeks to hire 200 more pilots by the end of the year.

It also is expanding its fleet, adding 20 Embraer 145 jets to its stock of 37 turboprops. The company expects to receive its seventh jet within a couple weeks. None fly out of Salisbury itself, but that could change in the coming years as the turboprops age, Hogg said.

“The aircraft we have today are life-limited. We can fly them for 80,000 cycles. Some of them are in the high 20s — 27, 28 years old, so they’re starting to approach their 80,000 cycles," he said.

Pilot staffing dictates how many aircraft can take to the air. The shortage isn't affecting air travelers yet, he said, “but it’s getting to the point we could see some issues down the road.”

If regional airlines are affected, larger carriers likely won't be far behind because they hire many of their pilots from their smaller cousins, Hogg said.

Original article can be found here:

Pilot for a day

Kathryn's Report:

Harry Monroe adjusts his microphone as he prepares to taxi down the runway at Ottumwa Industrial Airport. Monroe, 87, was fulfilling a lifelong dream in getting a lesson in flying.

OTTUMWA — Years ago, Harry Monroe met Clarence Chamberlin. It’s not a name people remember now, not unless you’re a serious student of aviation. If you know of him, there’s a good chance it’s in the context of Charles Lindbergh.

What people forget is that Lindbergh was one of many pilots chasing the Ortieg Prize, a $25,000 reward waiting for the first pilot who could complete a nonstop flight from New York to Paris. Lindbergh won, of course.

“I got to shake his hand and meet him,” Monroe said. “And [Chamberlin] was the second.”

At age 87, Monroe has seen aviation go from a spectacle to a commonplace occurrence. He watched as basic propeller-driven aircraft evolved into jets. Wicker seats in a fuselage carried early passengers. There was glamour to it. Now flying often resembles nothing so much as having a seat in a sardine can.

Airplanes had a hold on Monroe and they never let go. He wanted to fly. He pursued earthbound activities. He sailed. Biking was a favorite. He did 30 miles on RAGBRAI as recently as a couple years ago, but finally had to give that up. But flying remained just out of reach.

“It was exciting. I gave that up a long time ago. But I wanted to be a pilot so badly,” he said.

On Sunday, he was.

Monroe is quick to say he’s not going to get a pilot’s license. He rattled off health concerns he said would make that unlikely. They’re hard to believe when you’re around him, though. He has a quick mind and a ready wit. His gait isn’t as fast as it once was, but there are people a fraction of his age who have a harder time getting around.

Sunday’s flight was a gift. Keeley Paris was his instructor, and Archangel provided the plane. The time was donated. Monroe’s family set it up, and he thinks a passing remark led to the flight.

“To be truthful, my daughter and her pilot husband-to-be one day I’m sure, were talking at a wedding,” he said. Monroe mentioned wanting to fly. They made a few phone calls. The flight was set for Father’s Day.

Paris and Monroe did a pre-flight check of the single engine plane while family watched from the shade of the Ottumwa terminal building. It was warm, but a steady breeze out of the south kept it comfortable.

Monroe was nervous. He wasn’t sure he wanted to handle the takeoff. “We’ll do it together,” Paris promised.

But behind the nervousness was an obvious pleasure. Monroe was about to be in control of an airplane, fulfilling a boyhood dream.

“I’ve had a real adventuresome life without being a pilot,” said Monroe, “but this is going to be exciting.”

The plane taxied to the north end of the runway and turned to point into the wind. The end of the tarmac was hidden by a building. When the plane re-emerged it was already 20 feet off the ground.

It slowly gained altitude, heading into a clear blue sky with Monroe in the pilot’s seat. He was flying.

After decades of longing, he was a pilot. If only for a day.

Original article can be found here:

Cessna 150K, N6053G: Incident occurred June 18, 2016 in Lafayette, Tippecanoe County, Indiana

Kathryn's Report:

Date: 18-JUN-16
Time: 10:56:00Z
Regis#: N6053G
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 150
Event Type: Incident
Highest Injury: None
Damage: Unknown
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Indianapolis FSDO-11
State: Indiana


TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind (WLFI) — A private plane made an emergency landing Saturday in a Tippecanoe County field.

Purdue spokesperson Brian Zink said around 7:00 a.m. Purdue Fire along with the Wabash Township Fire… were called to a field near 575 west and South River Road.

He said the pilot reported having engine problems.

According to Zink, there were two people on the plane and no injuries were reported.

Original article can be found here:

Thousands sign petition to re-name Louisville International Airport (KSDF) after Muhammad Ali

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WLS) -- There's a growing effort in Muhammad Ali's hometown of Louisville to rename the city's airport in his honor.

An online petition to rename Louisville International as "Muhammad Ali International Airport" has gathered more than 1,300 signatures in just a matter of days.

The airport is undergoing renovations, so organizers say now is the perfect time to change the name.

"Muhammad Ali was a connector of people and what do airports do? They connect people," said Robert Holmes III.

The petition will be sent to the Louisville regional airport authority board, whose members will ultimately decide if the name-change will happen.

Original article can be found here:

Alamogordo-White Sands Regional Airport (KALM) Assisting in Dog Head Fire

Kathryn's Report:

ALAMOGORDO – The Alamogordo-White Sands Regional Airport has been the fueling hub to Neptune Aviation Services for the past few days, helping to refuel and carry fire retardent to fight the Dog Head fire near Albuquerque.

fire retardant or slurry is a crimson mixture of phosphates and water.

Neptune Aviation Services is an aerial firefighting company that works with the U.S Forest to fight forest and wildfires.

“The plan is to try to stop it and help the guys on the ground,” Capt. Pete Nadaon said, who is one of the many pilots providing air support on the fire.  “That’s pretty much what we do just support the guys on the ground.”

Neptune Aviation is headquartered in Missoula, Montana, according to their website. They have been the primary provider of large air tanker services to the U.S. Forest Service for more than 23 years.

The airport recently extended their runway so heavily loaded aircraft's have the ability to continue take-offs or stops if need be. It provides safe operations for jet planes, and the added runway length allows slurry bombers to take off in all-weather conditions.

The airport is one of three heavy air tanker bases in the country.

Nadaon said the fire is “High Potential” because of the dry area.

“The fire conditions are what they call a 6 on the Haines index and that’s a kind of measure of what they use to predict fire behavior,” he said.  “Extreme fire behavior that’s burning in pretty heavy timber, they’ve got a lot of aircraft's on, there’s at least four heavies one VLAT (Very Large Air Tanker) and a there’s a lot of airplanes on this right now.”

Nadaon is piloting the Bae 146 along with his co-pilot. They made several trips June 14 from Albuquerque to the airport, and will make several more the next day until the fire is contained. The two pilots were just coming back from their second trip before they had to jet off for another drop.

The Slurry bombers, as they are called, can carry up to 3,000 gallons of fire retardant. The aircraft's are hollow with nothing in them but a big tank for fuel and slurry. When the Neptune aircraft's are light they can weigh 40,000 pounds, Talbert said.

Slurry is the heaviest item the aircraft's carry.

“Slurry is 10 pounds a gallon, gas is six pounds a gallon, it burns 4,000 pounds an hour of gas and it carries 3,500 gallons of slurry full,” Talbert said.  “So times ten that’s pretty heavy. That’s why they need so much runway.”

Once the aircraft's return, they have one of three loading stations to choose from for loading gas and slurry.  It takes about ten to 15 minutes to fill up one of the aircraft's, according got assistant manager Tiffany Fralie.

“We got three loading stations and because of the weight of the airplane we put big medal plates out so it won’t sink in the asphalt,” Talbert said.

The aircraft's can fly 15 minutes past sundown before they have to land, according to Nadaon. Along with the VLAT, Neptune Aviation Services will continue to battle the fire until it is contained.

Original article can be found here:

Former pilot's heart soars for daughter

Julianna Huffert, 10, and her father Justin, talk about some of the things Julianna likes to do.

ROCKEFELLER TOWNSHIP – Former pilot Justin Huffert's whole world revolves around his 10-year-old daughter.

The 33-year-old single father who lives on Captain Bloom Road gave up the high-flying role of a pilot in 2013 to be with Julianna Huffert, who he refers to affectionately as his "human pet."

"If I'm gone five to 12 days, what do I do with her?" Huffert said this past week at his Rockefeller Township home. "It's not worth it. What do I want to more in life? Be a pilot or be a dad? I like my kid. I gave up being a pilot."

Huffert, a former flight instructor and private pilot for Sunbury Textile Mills, Skydive Happy Valley, Heritage Aviation and Max Media, is now training to be an insurance agent for Aflac. It's not as glamorous, but being a dad is a better gig, he said.

Julianna, a 10-year-old Shikellamy student headed into fifth grade at Oaklyn Elementary School, is a level 5 gymnast at the YMCA who has won multiple awards in her age group across the state and country. She recently returned from Camp Woodward where she took horseback riding lessons, climbed rock walls and trained with college professionals. She and her dad have a 4-year-old tortoise shell cat named Oreo, a green-winged McCaw named Tiki and one fish named Singlet.

The U.S. Census Bureau reports that there were an estimated 70.1 million fathers across the nation in 2008, the most recent year with available data. In 2014, it was estimated there were 1.9 million single fathers and about 43.5 percent were divorced, 33.0 percent were never married, 18.8 percent were separated, and 4.7 percent were widowed.

Huffert became a father at age 22 when he met a girl in Myrtle Beach and a few weeks later she told him she was pregnant. Although panicked and terrified of the idea, he moved her to Pennsylvania and they tried to raise Julianna together. Julianna's mother was an addict, which led to a difficult relationship. He became a single father in 2009 when he won the custody battle with Julianna's mother, who didn't show up for the hearing. They have had no contact with her since and Julianna has no memories of her mother.

"Her (Julianna's) life would be exponentially different if I hadn't done what I did," Huffert said. "It would not be for the better. This is for the best. It would have been a dangerous lifestyle."

Julianna loves her father.

"He's very nice and he lets me have Oreo," she said. " I don't want a different dad. I like watching movies with him, joking around with him and throwing the football with him."

Father and daughter are close. They tease each other constantly, watch movies together on a regular basis and do home improvement projects as a team. Huffert is proud of his daughter, who is rarely yelled at and loves to read "Diary of a Wimpy Kid." He notes she's a bit "airheaded sometimes."

When showing off her bedroom, she lamented the fact that so many zebras had to die for her bedding and wall decorations, which are zebra printed. Her dad laughed and exclaimed that no animals had to die for her room to be furnished.

"She's such a fibber," Huffert said with a smile.

Huffert admits that he had to sacrifice his twenties to become a father.

"It's scary," Huffert said. "I missed out on a little of my youth, but I don't regret it."

Huffert has learned a lot about being a parent in 10 years. For example, he doesn't expect to have free time any more. He has lost contact with friends because he can't just go out and party like he used to do.

"You have to be prepared to sacrifice," he said. "It's not about you anymore."

Huffert also said YouTube tutorials are lifesavers.

"I learned makeup and nails on YouTube," he said. "I can do really good French tips with electrical tape now."

He said you have to bury "any kind of macho-ism" because Barbies, American Girl Dolls, Hannah Montana and Disney are just a few of the items a father must play with when he has a little girl.

Huffert said he didn't think of himself as extraordinary.

"I'm not doing anything special," he said. "I'm just doing what I'm responsible for."

Original article can be found here:

Chicago-based Boeing selling 100 planes to Iran, aviation official says

Kathryn's Report:

Boeing Co. is negotiating a deal to sell 100 airplanes to Iran, state-run media reported Sunday, a sale potentially worth billions that would mark the first major entry of an American company into the Islamic Republic after last year's nuclear deal.

Chicago-based Boeing declined to discuss details of the talks or the figure of 100 planes, attributed to Ali Abedzadeh, the head of Iran's Civil Aviation Organization.

Regulatory hurdles and U.S. sanctions that remain in place after the nuclear agreement could complicate the deal. Despite efforts by the U.S. State Department to encourage trade to Iran, many American firms remain worried about the legal and political ramifications of any agreements with the country.

The state-run IRAN newspaper quoted Abedzadeh as saying negotiations took "several stages" and final figures and terms had yet to be reached.

"Both sides — Iran and Boeing — have reached a written agreement for buying Boeing airplanes," Abedzadeh was quoted as saying.

Fakher Daghestani, a Boeing spokesman based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, declined to answer any questions about Abedzadeh's comments.

"Any agreements reached will be contingent on U.S. government approval," Daghestani said in a statement.

Iranian airlines have some 60 Boeing airplanes in service, but most were purchased before the 1979 Islamic Revolution that ousted Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and brought Islamists to power.

Out of Iran's 250 commercial planes, about 150 are flying while the rest are grounded due to lack of spare parts. Parts and servicing remained nearly impossible to get while the world sanctioned Iran over its contested nuclear program.

Included in last year's nuclear deal is approval for airline manufacturers to enter the Iranian market. Already, Iran Air has signed agreements to buy 118 planes from the European consortium Airbus and 20 more from French-Italian aircraft manufacturer ATR.

Iran is a lucrative market, with the Airbus deal alone worth $25 billion. But Boeing has treaded cautiously.

U.S. sanctions not tied to the nuclear program remain in place, and American lawmakers have warned Boeing not to do business there as the Iran deal remains a hot topic in the ongoing presidential election. Boeing may need to run the sale through an overseas subsidiary and use a currency other than U.S. dollars in order to avoid running afoul of American laws.

In April, Iran's state-run IRNA news agency quoted Maqsoud Asadi Samani, the secretary of the Society of Iranian Airlines, as saying Boeing officials offered 737, 777 and 787 model aircraft on a trip to Tehran.

In his published remarks Sunday, Abedzadeh said that "Iran will not be in a hurry about the agreement since the U.S. has always used Iran's old fleet as leverage."

"Iran will apply caution in the talks," he said.

Original article can be found here:

Chico’s new airport manager visits

Kathryn's Report:

 New Chico Airport manager Sherry Miller, second from left, meets the members of the Airport Commission and the press Friday in Chico.

Chico >> On Friday, the Chico Airport Commission met and confirmed the new airport manager, Sherry Miller, who will be leaving the Lake Tahoe Airport as its manager to come to Chico in about a month.

City Manager Mark Orme introduced Miller to the five-member board, which confirmed the city manager’s appointment of Miller. The City Council will confirm her as well.

Orme said he had gotten resumes from as far away as Alaska and the Great Lakes, “but the person with the most depth of experience and the right fit for Chico was a couple of hours away.”

Early in her cover letter for the Chico position, Miller said she has worked in the aviation industry for more than 30 years and “still holds the same passion that I have always displayed with my career. Not only do I still have immense passion for what I do, I have the skill set that you are looking for in a successful airport manager.”

Many of those skills have come from working at 11 airports, and directly managing nine, she said.

Miller’s resume winds through her 30 years in aviation, ranging from servicing aircraft to executive airport management of an eight-airport system, two of which had commercial passenger service.

Since 2009, she has been director of the Lake Tahoe Airport, based in South Lake Tahoe.

Airport managers keep an eye on other airports, she told this newspaper after the meeting. “I’ve seen there were some growing pains here.”

She’s known about Chico for years, she said, after having friends at Chico State University, and Chico residents who have a second home at Tahoe have encouraged her to come here.

On initial reaction, she said, “I can see (the airport) needs attention, some one-on-one attention. City managers can’t do it all.”

Miller said she was looking forward to helping bring back commercial air service.

Candidates for the position met with two interviewing panels, made up of people from the airport and business communities and city personnel.

Miller will be in place for the next Airport Commission meeting July 26.

The Airport Commission welcomed Miller, but also had words for Debbie Collins, who has been second-in-command at the airport after Orme.

Former chair Thomas Nolan-Gosling told Collins, “These last six years, you’ve really helped us. You did a great job. Please pay us a visit.”

Collins will continue in the city manager’s office with other duties.

Among other aviation related jobs, Miller’s resume noted, has been airport safety and security coordinator at Tahoe, customer service assistant at Oxford (England) Aviation Training; acting director of airports/principal airport manager and assistant airport manager for San Diego County; operations and customer service agent for Alaska Airlines; customer service for Golden Gate Aviation; and a ferry pilot for Western Sun Aviation.

She is the president of Association of California Airports. She has a master of public administration and a bachelor’s degree in aviation management.

While at the Tahoe airport, she managed construction and planning projects such as reconstruction of the terminal ramp and airport master plan. She also has more than 12 years as a grant administrator and has obtained more than $50 million in federal and state grant funds for administrative and airport improvement projects.

Original article can be found here: