Thursday, August 18, 2016

As company apologizes, Wrightsville Beach officials need more time to review citation options for helicopter stunt

Wrightsville Beach town officials will need more time to review the legal options available in response to a helicopter stunt on Tuesday that dropped flyers over students at an organized beach party. Meanwhile, the founder of the tech startup company that dropped the flyers is publically apologizing after an online backlash over littering and the potential danger to students.

Wrightsville Beach Town Manager Tim Owens said officials were in discussion with both the town attorney and the district attorney to see what legal options they can take against either Oak Island’s High Tide Helicopters or Likeli, the startup company that staged the promotion. Owens said a decision on what citations it can issue either of the companies may not come for a week.

Likeli hired the helicopter operator to fly over University of North Carolina Wilmington students at the annual Beach Blast party while an employee drop $1,000 in dollar bills, each stamped and attached to a flyer, most of which ended up in the ocean as students scrambled to retrieve the dollars.

Owens said the town was also investigating whether it could enforce its town ordinance requiring all aircraft maintain 500 feet of altitude, or whether similar Federal Aviation Administration rules would take precedent. He said the town’s likely only option would be to issue a littering citation.

George Taylor, III, founder and chief executive officer of startup app Likeli, apologized for the stunt on Thursday, in both a public Facebook post and in media interviews, and said the company would organize a beach sweep on Sunday to begin atone for the mistake.

“It was poorly executed, it wasn’t well thought through, and we own it,” Taylor said. “I’m not going to say it was a good idea. I’ve lived in Wilmington my whole life, the last thing I want to do is trash the ocean.”

Taylor said the stunt failed in many ways because the drop was intended for land. In addition to dropping flyers into the ocean, the dollar bills were stamped with water-based inked, likely washing off the message before many got to read it. The water also removed the adhesion between the flyer and dollar, with many students not even seeing the flyer. And the stickers were rendered useless in the water.

Taylor said there were company “ambassadors” on the beach ready to clean up any leftover flyers, but they were asked to leave the event by town officials after the drop. Many of the flyers were unreachable underneath the water.

The event sparked an outcry on social media, as beach advocates in the area reposted news and videos of the incident onto social media accounts. Taylor said that the old adage that there’s no such thing as bad publicity may not be true here.

“I hate to be the one responsible here,” Taylor said. “But it is refreshing to see that there is immediately accountability from the community when you do what’s wrong.

Taylor said since Likeli’s services targeted the student community, the company wanted to make an impression on UNCW students, but sponsorship of Beach Blast proved too expensive, so they devised the new plan in 48 hours. Taylor said more thought should have gone into the stunt.

Owens said that incident marred what is a successful yearly event.

“I’m not saying we would stop the event, but if people continue with these kinds of shenanigans, we could have some issues,” Owens said.

To make amends, Taylor said the company would host a beach sweet at Stone Street on Sunday, Aug. 21 at 9 a.m.

“I’m hoping we can make right with what we’ve done,” Taylor said. “I don’t intend for that to be the end of this and we’re looking into doing events at Masonboro Island and Carolina Beach too.”


WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WECT) -  The social media app company, Likeli, has issued an apology following a helicopter cash drop during a UNCW back-to-school event Tuesday. Likeli hired High Tide Helicopters out of Oak Island to fly over the crowd at UNCW's Beach Blast event at Wrightsville Beach.

Wrightsville Beach Town Manager Tim Owens said he's looking into issuing citations for littering and dangerous flying.

"That's not something that we condone, that type of activity," Owens said. "It could be dangerous. i think this pilot is a really good pilot but you never know what happens even on the ground. You have a lot of kids, you know basically swimming around trying to grab money, you know something unfortunate with that could happen with that as well."

Owens said there's a town ordinance that requires aircraft to fly at a minimum of 500 feet above the ground, however is looking into Federal Aviation Administration regulations.

Jennifer Ward is the owner of High Tide Helicopters and was the pilot during the event.

"I've been very disappointed in the Likeli company and their lack of professionalism and I can assure you I won't be doing business with them again," Ward said.

Ward cited a Federal Aviation Administration regulation that allows helicopters to operate below the regulated altitudes for other aircraft. She said that would preempt state and local laws.

"I would never fly in such a way that would endanger anyone on the ground or in the helicopter and I'm disappointed that some of the comments made by the police department over in Wrightsville Beach implied."

Story and video:

Incidents occurred September 17 and September 14, 2016 at Reno-Stead Airport (KRTS), Reno, Nevada

RENO, Nev. (News 4 & Fox 11) — No injuries were reported after an aircraft caught fire during the Reno Air Races Saturday morning, according to a spokeswoman.

Mary-Sarah Kinner told News 4-Fox 11 in an emailed statement that there was no crash whatsoever. She said the pilot landed the aircraft safely.

After the pilot safely exited the aircraft, the fire broke out, according to the statement. The fire was extinguished.

Earlier in the week, a jet flying with the Blue Angels blew out a tire during practice for the races. No one was injured in that incident either.

The Reno Air Races are taking place through Sunday, Sept. 18, at the Reno-Stead Airport.


RENO, Nev. (News 4 & Fox 11) — A jet flying with the Blue Angels blew out a tire Wednesday during practice for the Reno Air Races, according to a spokeswoman.

No injuries were reported in the incident, though several emergency vehicles could be seen responding on the ground at Reno-Stead Airport.

The Blue Angels are part of the demonstrations scheduled for the Reno Championship Air Races.

Tragedy struck the squadron in June when a Blue Angels pilot died in a crash during a practice flight near Nashville, Tennessee.


Eagle River couple plans vast African adventure in wooden plane

Nick and Lita Oppegard will fly from the island of Crete to Cape Town, South Africa, a nearly 7,000-mile journey across the African continent, in a wooden biplane.

A lot of people wouldn’t be all that excited about hopping in a wooden plane and flying thousands of miles.

An Eagle River couple will do just that in November.

They will make up one of two American teams on a historic air rally in November that will see two dozen vintage aircraft fly nearly 7,000 miles across the African continent.

The story of Lita and Nick Oppegard’s relationship starts in the air.

Lita was born and raised in Alaska, the daughter of a bush pilot. She grew up flying everywhere with her dad.

“In fact growing up the first family vehicle that I have a memory of was our Stinson Station Wagon, a four-place single- engine aircraft,” she said.

Nick came to Alaska in 1973 as a young pilot just looking to get some multi-engine turbine time, so he could — as he would have said then — go back to America and “fly for a real airline.” But flying for Wein Air turned out to be a life-changing job, and he stayed.

“I could spend three lifetimes here and not see it all,” he said.

And one day, he got up the courage to ask out a beautiful young flight attendant named Lita.

“I was never going to date flight attendants,” said Nick. “And I can tell you this, I’ve dated one now and I’ll never date another one.”

They got married a little over a year later, nearly 40 years ago. They’ve been flying together ever since.

They’re telling this story, appropriately, in seats pulled from a retired commercial jet in the corner of an old airplane hangar at the Alaska Air Museum in Anchorage, surrounded by beautiful old planes that tell the story of flight on the last frontier.

The couple is about to embark on their own journey into aviation’s past.

They’ll be part of a vintage air rally, flying an antique plane from the island of Crete to Cape Town, South Africa, on a journey that will take more than a month.

When Nick first read about the Crete2Cape Vintage Air Rally, he was entranced.

He said to relive those glory days of early flight is something aviators dream about.

“We all have a romantic side of us when it comes to flying,” he said, “the days of barnstorming and flying in open cockpit airplanes over fields and pastures and waving at children whose eyes are as big as saucers looking up at these grand machines. So I went home and ran this one up the flagpole with she who must be obeyed.”

Lita thought it sounded like their kind of adventure.

“Of course then we got on the mission of finding just the right airplane for us to do this in,” she said.

That plane is a 1928 Travel Air 4000, a radial-engine biplane born during the golden age of aviation. It was built by a company whose three founders — Clyde Cessna, Walter Beech, and Lloyd Stearman — all went on to give their names to other companies and other planes.

The plane was owned and flown by a couple of aviation greats: The famed racer Matty Laird, and aerobatic pioneer Frank Price. But Nick’s favorite story from its illustrious history comes from its days with the Newark Flying Service.

“It was rented out to pilots and the airplane was confiscated and sold at public auction because one of the pilots was using it to smuggle booze during Prohibition,” he said. “Now that’s character and I think a lot of Alaskans can relate to that.”

Nick said 1,400 of these Travel Air Four Thousands were built, and only 40 are still flying. Three will join the rally, and, as it happens, two will hold Oppegards. Nick and Lita’s son, Colin, is joining the only other American team on the historic flight.

Getting the biplane across the Atlantic is itself a logistical feat. It will be broken down in Florida and packed into a shipping container with special padding and cradles. Then it will be shipped by sea to England’s southern shore.

Not far from Southampton, a fleet of vintage planes will take off at the end of October.

They’ll fly across France, over the Alps, Italy, and the Balkans to Greece.

Nick will make the 300-mile flight across the Mediterranean alone, swaddled in a survival suit.

Lita will join him when he lands in Egypt.

“Imagine flying in an open cockpit biplane down the Nile River,” Nick Oppegard said, “by the pyramids over the antiquities of Khartoum, by Kilimanjaro, over Victoria Falls and flying out to the fascinating spice island of Zanzibar in the Indian Ocean right on the coast, and then landing in the Great Serengeti Plain, ending the trip at Table Mountain in Capetown South Africa.”

Along the way, they’ll sleep in safari camps and attend Roaring Twenties-themed galas. Their packing list includes a sleeping bag and black-tie attire. But what they’re looking forward to the most is meeting locals and their fellow adventurers.

“As we get to know the other people in the rally and the people that we meet on the ground and in the various place we stop it will be with great pride that we tell them that we are from Alaska,” Lita Oppegard said.

The trip will take five weeks from the time they leave Crete on November 11, and it is not without risks. But they’re OK with that. They’re pilots, after all. And Alaskans.

“Well hey, it’s part of being alive,” Nick Oppegard said. “Mitigate the risks as best you can, enjoy life, enjoy the beauty of this magnificent planet, its people, and these wonderful flying machines.”

You can follow their progress come November on the Crete2Cape Facebook page.


Van's RV6A, N576RV: Accident occurred August 18, 2016 at Pekin Municipal Airport (C15), Tazewell County, Illinois

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Springfield FSDO-19

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA329
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, August 18, 2016 in Pekin, IL
Aircraft: COLLINS RV6A, registration: N576RV
Injuries: 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 may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On August 18, 2016, about 1520 central daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Collins RV6A airplane, N576RV, impacted terrain during takeoff from runway 27 at the Pekin Municipal Airport (C15), near Pekin, Illinois. The private pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was substantially damage during the impact. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area about the time of the accident, and the flight was not operated on a flight plan. The flight was originating from C15 at the time of the accident and its destination is unknown.

According to an initial first-responder report given to a Federal Aviation Administration inspector, the pilot indicated that he had forgotten to latch the canopy. The canopy opened during the takeoff and the airplane subsequently impacted terrain where it was substantially damaged.

After the accident, the pilot made an emergency radio call over C15's common traffic advisory frequency, which went unanswered. The pilot was able to make a cell phone call and was able to reach a representative from the fixed base operator who subsequently went to the accident site and notified emergency responders. The pilot was taken to a hospital for the serious injuries he sustained.

At 1454, the recorded weather at the General Downing - Peoria International Airport, near Peoria, Illinois, was: Wind 210 degrees at 12 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 31 degrees C; dew point 22 degrees C; altimeter 30.01 inches of mercury.

A Van's RV6A experimental aircraft crashed Thursday afternoon while trying to take off from Pekin Municipal Airport, injuring the pilot.

About 3:30 p.m., the plane was about 20 feet to 30 feet off the runaway when it came back down and crashed, said Detective michael Eeten, the Pekin Police Department's Public Information/Intelligence Officer. The white-and-maroon, two-seat propeller plane appeared to have landed nose first from the damage.

A LifeFlight helicopter was called shortly after the crash and took off with 68-year-old Stanley Tinker of Sheffield, a village in Bureau County, about 4:15 p.m. for OSF Saint Francis Medical Center. It took a while for rescue workers to remove Tinker from the plane. He appeared to have suffered injuries that weren't life-threatening and was conscious when he was flown to the Peoria hospital, Eeten said. The man had been complaining about pain in his lower body and back, Eeten said.

Workers took more than an hour to defuel the small plane before it was lifted onto a flat-bed trailer and hauled back to the hangars. Afterward, a firetruck with the Pekin Fire Department hosed down the tarmac and the surrounding area to dilute whatever fuel remained.

It wasn't clear what caused the kit-built plane to crash. The Federal Aviation Administration was contacted and it was beginning its investigation into the crash. According to the FAA's national registry, which keeps a list of tail numbers, Tinker is the plane's owner.

Crashes at the municipal airport, which caters mostly to private pilots, aren't very common, Eeten said.

"It is something that happens ever so often. It's been several years since a plane has crashed here," he said.


A pilot escaped serious injury during a plane crash in Tazewell County.

Pekin police say the Van's RV6A experimental aircraft crashed during takeoff from the Pekin Municipal Airport around 3:30 p.m. Thursday.

“The plane crashed into the runway,” said Pekin Public Information Officer Mike Eeten. “It was taking off at the time, got 20-to-30 feet into the air and came back down onto the runway.”

The pilot, who has not been identified, was the lone occupant. The pilot was life-flighted to OSF Saint Francis Medical Center.

“He was alert and conscious when authorities arrived,” Eeton said. “He had some damage to the lower part of his body.” Eeten says the pilot’s injuries did not appear to be life-threatening.

The Federal Aviation Administration had the plane towed to a hangar so it can conduct its investigation.


TAZEWELL COUNTY, ILLINOIS   -    A man was taken by Lifeflight from Pekin Airport after a Van's RV6A experimental aircraft crashed.

It happened Thursday afternoon around 3:30.

According to Pekin Police detective Mike Eeten, the plane was taking off, when it crashed back onto the runway.

The pilot was trapped in the plane, but was removed before Lifeflight arrived.

WMBD has a crew headed to the airport.


The pilot is now alert and conscious.

The plane was 20 to 30 feet in the air until it crashed to the ground.

The FAA has been notified about the crash at the airport, but is not at the scene.

No word on what caused the crash.

Man indicted for shining spotlight into helicopter cockpit

A Canal Winchester man has been indicted on two felony charges for allegedly shining a “high-powered spotlight” at a Columbus police helicopter involved in the search for a missing child.

Earl Warren Boorn, 57, was indicted Aug. 18 on one count of interfering with the operation of an aircraft by shining a light into the cockpit, a second-degree felony, and one count of possessing criminal tools, a fifth-degree felony.

While helping officers on the ground search the Canal Winchester area for the child late on May 18, the crew of the police helicopter was temporarily blinded after the cockpit was hit with the light, according to Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien.

He said the crew was able to recover and land safely.

“A search warrant was executed at Boorn’s home and a Sport Spot 10 Million candlepower spotlight was recovered,” O’Brien said.

Boorn is scheduled to be arraigned Sept. 6. If he is convicted of the charges, he faces up to nine years in prison.


Atherton: Crowd tells county they've had enough of Surf Air

It was standing room only in the Jennings Pavilion at Atherton's Holbrook-Palmer Park on Aug. 16 as about 185 people came to a county-sponsored town hall meeting about the impacts of Surf Air flights in and out of the San Carlos Airport. 

San Mateo County got an earful from a standing-room only crowd of about 185 people who packed a meeting room in Atherton Tuesday night to talk about how Surf Air has affected their lives.

Speakers included a doctor who said medical literature shows noise increases heart disease risks, a mother who said she has to run a white noise machine to get her toddler to sleep, and residents who urged civil disobedience as well as others who urged the county to stop worrying about being sued over its actions at the airport.

"This is war," said Phil Wasserstein, a Menlo Park resident and a neurologist. Dr. Wasserstein said he reviewed medical literature and found studies linking noise to increased cardiovascular disease risk.

"I think it's a fundamental problem having a commercial airline flying into the San Carlos Airport," he said. "You represent the people of this county, and you should represent those people rather than making a compromise for fear of a lawsuit," he told Supervisor Don Horsley, who hosted the meeting in Atherton's Holbrook-Palmer Park.

Attendees included representatives of Surf Air, the airline that started using the San Carlos Airport in June 2013 and now schedules up to 45 flights a day for customers who pay a monthly fee for unlimited flights within California and to Reno.

"We understand the elephant in the room," said Surf Air CEO Jim Potter. "That would be us." Mr. Potter said Surf Air understands "the sensitivities, we understand the effects."

But speakers questioned that. "You don't understand," said Rosemary Murphy. "You only hear us, but you don't know what it's like to live under this noise. I'm outside and I'm trying to have a nice dinner party and what do I hear? Planes, planes, planes. Am I angry? I am furious."

Supervisor Horsley said Surf Air's initial move into the San Carlos Airport "really caught us off guard." What was once three round trips a day is now 22, he said.

The county has done a number of things to try to control the noise problems, including forming a working group of local officials and residents, consulting with the Federal Aviation Administration and, most recently, starting a study and hiring consultants to look at possible actions.

He said the county has taken some concrete actions, including bulldozing the building that Surf Air used for its passengers before and after flights and putting restrictions on airport parking. They hired a mediator to try to get the airline to cut flights back to eight round trips a day, but were not successful, he said.

One action which both sides had hoped might cut back noise complaints is a new route the airline may use in good weather, when air traffic allows, that takes the planes over the Bay instead of the Peninsula.

A six-month test of that route was approved by the FAA and began July 5, but foggy weather and air traffic have allowed it to be used less than 65 percent of the time. Residents say early morning flights continue to go over their homes most of the time.

"I still have more flights going over me per day than I did two-and-a-half years ago," said North Fair Oaks resident Joe Stratton. He said he spent two weeks tracking Surf Air flights from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m., and not one used the new Bay route.

Supervisor Horsley said the number of flights able to use the Bay route "is not as optimistic as we originally thought."

Airport Manager Gretchen Kelly said that Surf Air flights to the San Carlos Airport affect 140,000 people under their flight path, 137,000 of them in San Mateo County.

Some of the 3,000 people in Santa Clara County who live under the new Bay flight path came to the meeting to express their unhappiness with the new route, which they said has re-routed planes over their homes. Ms. Kelly said Surf Air flights have always flown over Sunnyvale, but now they are flying over a different part of the city.

"A solution to airplane noise should not be to move the noise from one neighborhood to another," said Sunnyvale resident Shannon Morgan.

The county has promised to work with Sunnyvale on the problem.

A resident of Palmer Lane in North Fair Oaks said that the airline's departing flights are also a noise problem. "Why (are they) allowed to do what they're doing at the expense of all of us?" she asked. "Shame on you," she said to Mr. Potter. "I'm so disgusted."

"These planes fly overhead morning, noon and night" said Julie Horvath of Menlo Park. "I can't sit outside and have a conversation."

Marina Rose, who lives near the airport, asked the county "to get control of the airport." "We really need to take some unprecedented action," she said. "We need some radical response soon."

Allied Arts resident John Warrace said he had a suggestion: he might just run out of gas on the road accessing the airport one morning, blocking the access of the Surf Air pilots and passengers. "If there's enough of us, it's going to cause a problem," he said. "Our local government, the people who are supposed to take care of us, are not doing it anymore.

Only one speaker, who said her son wants to be a commercial pilot and needs to work for Surf Air before moving up to a larger airline, was supportive of Surf Air. "We've got a serious pilot shortage," said the Redwood City resident.

Menlo Park resident James Courtney said he wants to make sure any new regulations do not hurt other users of the airport, including him. "My concern is that the frustration and sweeping generalizations ... have the potential to hurt a lot of people" if regulations that affect other airport users are adopted, he said.

Surf Air officials did not hear all the comments directed their way, because at 7:30, about an hour before the public comments ended, Mr. Potter announced they had to leave. "We have travel plans," Mr. Potter said. As they were leaving a voice from the audience shouted out: "See you in court."

Another public meeting on the subject will be held in Redwood City on Wednesday, Sept. 14 at 6:30 p.m. in the Fair Oaks Community Center, 2600 Middlefield Road. In October, the Board of Supervisors is scheduled to hear back from the consultants who have been studying the issue.


California Highway Patrol copter, Fresno deputy rescue hiker on Pacific Crest Trail

Officers in the California Highway Patrol helicopter and a Fresno County Sheriff’s deputy rescued a hiker who had a medical emergency Sunday evening along the Pacific Crest Trail north of Edison Lake, sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti reported.

Tara Steele, 66, from Santa Rosa was hiking the Pacific Crest Trail when she suffered an apparent stroke and was able to activate an emergency personal locator beacon.

The helicopter, piloted by CHP officer Riley Dixon with flight officer Rusty Hotchkiss and deputy Johnny Reyes, flew to the area of Brave Lake. Reyes was lowered to the ground where he helped Steele back to the copter so she could be flown to Community Regional Medical Center for treatment.

Story and video: 

On the evening of August 14, 2016, California Highway Patrol Helicopter 40 (H-40) was requested by the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office to assist with a search and rescue of an ill hiker.

The victim, 66 year old Tara Steele from Santa Rosa, CA, was hiking the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) when she became ill Sunday afternoon with what she believed to be signs and symptoms of a possible stroke. 

Steele activated her emergency personal locator beacon giving information to her family that she was in need of rescue. 

The personal locator beacon gave coordinates indicating that Steele was located along the PCT just east of Brave Lake in Fresno County.

H-40 (Pilot Officer Riley Dixon and Flight Officer/Paramedic Rusty Hotchkiss) responded to the area with Fresno County Sheriff’s Deputy Johnny Reyes. 

The crew located Steele in a heavily forested area.

Using H- 40’s hoist, Deputy Reyes was lowered down to Steele’s location with rescue equipment.

With the assistance of additional hikers in the area, Deputy Reyes prepared Steele for a hoist rescue. 

With little daylight remaining, Steele and Deputy Reyes were hoisted safely up to H-40. 

Steele was transported to Edison Lake where she was transferred to the EMS helicopter SkyLife 1 for patient care and transport to Community Regional Medical Center, Fresno, CA.

Luscombe 8A, Ormond Aircraft Brokers LLC, N13CQ: Incident occurred August 18, 2016 near Ormond Beach Municipal Airport (KOMN), Volusia County, Florida


FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Orlando FSDO-15

Date: 18-AUG-16
Time: 12:45:00Z
Regis#: N13CQ
Aircraft Make: LUSCOMBE
Aircraft Model: 8
Event Type: Incident
Highest Injury: None
Damage: Unknown
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
State: Florida


A single engine airplane carrying a flight instructor and a student pilot lost a propeller and had to make an emergency landing near a field north of Ormond Beach on Thursday morning, officials said.

Both the occupants of the airplane escaped injury, rescue workers said.

According to a dispatcher's call log, the municipal airport tower in Ormond Beach reported at 8:21 a.m. that they lost contact with the aircraft flying over dense woods after the pilot said he was going down near a field.

The flight instructor took control of the aircraft and landed it in a field three miles north of the airport and east of Interstate 95, said sheriff's spokesman Andrew Gant.

Other than the propeller, there was no damage to the plane, Gant said.

The pilot and his companion were located by law enforcement officials around 8:49 a.m. and both were reported to be uninjured, dispatch records show.

Rescue and emergency works said the pilot and a passenger were alert and did not need medical attention, officials said.

Officials reported the plane tail number as N13CQ. That plane is listed on the Federal Aviation Administration registry as a single-engine Luscombe that became airworthy in 1957. The plane is owned by Ormond Aircraft Brokers of Ormond Beach, according to the FAA.

The FAA and NTSB were notified and the owner of the plane assumed control of the aircraft, Gant said.

Story and video:

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. - A single-engine airplane made an emergency landing Thursday morning in a Volusia County field after the plane lost its propeller in flight, according to officials.

There were no injuries in the incident, which was reported near 1155 Broadway Ave. near U.S. 1 and Interstate 95 in Ormond Beach, Volusia County sheriff's officials said.

According to the Volusia County Sheriff's Office, the plane, carrying a flight instructor and a student pilot, lost its propeller, and the instructor took control of the aircraft and landed it safely in an open field.

There was no damage to the plane.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were contacted about the incident.

No other details have been released.

Story and video:

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. —Two people are OK after a small plane was forced to make an emergency landing in a field near Ormond Beach on Thursday morning. 

According to the Volusia County Sheriff's Office, the pilot notified air traffic controllers of an engine problem before landing the Luscombe 8A aircraft off Broadway Avenue about three miles north of the Ormond Beach Municipal Airport around 8:45 a.m.

Emergency crews were able to make contact with the pilot and passenger shortly before 9 a.m. Both people are OK and most rescue units called to the scene were canceled.

Authorities said a flight instructor and student pilot were practicing takeoffs and landings at the airport at the time.

The plane suffered minor damage.


Cessna 152, West Georgia AirServices Inc., N5250B: Accident occurred August 17, 2016 at Newnan Coweta County Airport (KCCO), Newnan, Coweta County, Georgia


FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Atlanta FSDO-11

NTSB Identification: ERA16CA294
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, August 17, 2016 in Newnan, GA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/27/2016
Aircraft: CESSNA 152, registration: N5250B
Injuries: 1 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.

The solo student pilot reported that he was on final approach for a full stop landing when he observed another airplane waiting for the active runway. He intentionally landed long to accommodate the traffic and then "made [the] decision to keep up speed" in order to exit the runway quickly. He misjudged his speed and the airplane departed the right side of the runway, continued across a taxiway, and then down an embankment before nosing over. He later reported that the wheel brakes were less effective because he had full flaps selected. Also, he had applied aft yoke inputs, which minimized the effectiveness of the nose wheel steering system.

A Federal Aviation Administration inspector examined the wreckage and reported that the airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage, empennage, and both wings. The pilot reported there were no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or anomalies that would have precluded normal operation of the airplane.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The student pilot's improper decision to land long and maintain excessive speed during the landing roll. Contributing to the accident was the student pilot's decision to maintain full flaps and aft yoke inputs at a higher speed, reducing his ability to stop the airplane on the runway.

Cessna T182T, CCC Holdings LLC, N405CC: Incident occurred August 17, 2016 in Chino, San Bernardino County, California


FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Riverside FSDO-21

Date: 17-AUG-16
Time: 17:10:00Z
Regis#: N405CC
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 182
Event Type: Incident
Highest Injury: None
Damage: None
Flight Phase: TAXI (TXI)
State: California


Sport Trainer, N772CV: Accident occurred August 17, 2016 at Harrison County Airport (8G6), Cadiz, Ohio

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Docket And Docket Items - National Transportation Safety Board:

Aviation Accident Data Summary -   National Transportation Safety Board:

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Cleveland FSDO-25

NTSB Identification: GAA16CA441
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, August 17, 2016 in Cadiz, OH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/05/2016
Injuries: 1 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.

The pilot of the tailwheel equipped airplane reported that during landing the airplane touched down and veered to the left. The pilot further reported that he applied right rudder, but accidentally caught the right heel brake and the airplane veered off the runway to the right and subsequently nosed over.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing.

The pilot reported that there were no preimpact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's failure to maintain directional control during landing and the unintentional right brake application, which resulted in a runway excursion and a nose over.

Cessna 182K Skylane, N2704Q: Accident occurred August 17, 2016 in Anchorage, Alaska

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Anchorage FSDO-03

NTSB Identification: GAA16CA434
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, August 17, 2016 in Anchorage, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/12/2016
Aircraft: CESSNA 182, registration: N2704Q
Injuries: 4 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.

The pilot reported that while on approach to land on a taxiway due to a larger airplane using the runway to offload, he was distracted by the younger passengers in the rear seats and noticed that the airplane's rate of descent was higher than normal. The pilot further reported that, he advanced the throttle to full, however there was not enough time to recover and the airplane landed hard. 

While taxing to park the pilot realized that the airplane had sustained substantial damage as the rudder controls where jammed due to the nose gear impacting the firewall. The pilot was able to taxi the airplane to a parking position without further incident.

The pilot reported that there were no pre impact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's failure to maintain a controlled landing flare, which resulted in a hard landing. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's inattention and distraction.

Mooney M20K, N252BL: Incident occurred August 17, 2016 in Guernsey, Platte County, Wyoming

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Casper FSFO-04

Date: 18-AUG-16
Time: 03:00:00Z
Regis#: N252BL
Aircraft Make: MOONEY
Aircraft Model: M20K
Event Type: Incident
Highest Injury: None
Damage: Unknown
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
State: Wyoming


Arion Lightning, N270J: Accident occurred August 04, 2016 near New Garden Airport (N57), Toughkenamon, Chester County, Pennsylvania

NTSB Identification: ERA16LA285
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, August 04, 2016 in TOUGHKENAMON, PA
Aircraft: SHAFFER DONALD ARION LIGHTNING, registration: N270J
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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

On August 4, 2016, about 1900 eastern daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Arion Lightning, N270J, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing to a field near the New Garden Airport (N57), Toughkenamon, Pennsylvania. The sport pilot/builder/owner sustained minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. No flight plan was filed for the local flight that depart N57 about 1800.

The pilot stated that he had flown for about an hour before he returned to the airport. When turning onto the base leg, he reduced engine RPM and the engine lost all power. The pilot realized he was not going to make the runway and attempted to land in a field. The airplane struck a power line and landed hard resulting in substantial damage to the wings, firewall, and fuselage.

The avionic components containing non-volatile memory were retained for further examination.

Diamond DA20-C1, Bohlke International Airways, N828BB: Accident occurred Sunday, August 07, 2016 near Henry E. Rohlson International Airport (STX), St. Croix, Virgin Islands


NTSB Identification: ERA16LA282
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 07, 2016 in St. Croix, VI
Aircraft: DIAMOND AIRCRAFT IND INC DA 20 C1, registration: N828BB
Injuries: 2 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 may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On August 7, 2016, at 1123 Atlantic standard time, a Diamond DA 20 C1, N828BB, was destroyed during collision with terrain following a bounced landing and runway excursion on runway 10 at Henry E. Rohlson International Airport (STX), St. Croix, Virgin Islands. The student pilot and flight instructor were seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local instructional flight that originated at STX about 1030, and was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

Preliminary information from the STX air traffic control tower revealed the airplane had completed one touch-and-go landing and was cleared for a second touch-and-go. Just prior to touchdown, the airplane "tilted" to its left, and the left wingtip appeared to strike the ground prior to the main landing gear. The airplane continued, and bounced 4 to 5 times before "banking hard" to its left, departing the landing surface, and crashing into trees north of the runway.

The pilots were not immediately available for interview due to their injuries.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land, multiengine land and instrument airplane. He held a flight instructor certificate for airplane single engine. He was issued an FAA second-class medical certificate on January 29, 2016. According to the operator, the pilot had accrued 506 total hours of flight experience.

The student pilot was issued an FAA third-class medical certificate on June 10, 2014. According to the operator, the student pilot had accrued 34.6 total hours of flight experience.

The airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed June 24, 2016, at 1,982.9 total aircraft hours.

Examination of the airplane by FAA aviation safety inspectors revealed the tail section and the engine compartment separated from the cockpit and cabin structure. The engine remained attached by wires and cables. Control continuity was established from the cockpit to the flight control surfaces through cable breaks and cuts made by recovery personnel.

Examination of photographs revealed angular cuts in tree branches above the crash site.

The airplane was retained for further examination.

At 1315, the weather reported at STX included few clouds at 1,800 feet and wind from 120 at 10 knots. The temperature was 32 degrees C, dewpoint was 26 degrees C, and the altimeter setting was 30.05 inches of mercury.

Regine Rose Acosta

Regine Acosta and Flight Instructor Theo Smith

ST. CROIX — The victims of a plane accident that occurred near Estate Yellow Cedar but within the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on Sunday, August 7th, are in more seriously condition previously thought, multiple sources with knowledge of the matter have confirmed to The Consortium.

One source with intimately knowledge of the situation revealed that the student victim, a 19-year-old named Regine Rose Acosta, was damaged so badly that she had to be airlifted to the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Florida Sunday.

Ms. Acosta was featured in a story on The Consortium on June 2, 2015; back then a Central High School senior, detailing her first solo flight as a pilot, which was deemed successful.

Ms. Acosta, who plans on pursuing a career as a commercial pilot, developed a love for flying in 9th grade after joining the Virgin Islands Youth Aviation Club, where she has been a member for five years.

On February 28, 2015, she began training for her private pilot’s license. Back then, Ms. Acosta had completed 26 of the 40 hours required for the licensure.

The instructor who was also badly injured during the accident with a broken leg and other injuries, is a firefighter stationed at the airport. His identity was not revealed, but he too was airlifted out of the territory for further care, these sources say.

Though the victims’ conditions are stable, they sustained serious injuries. Ms. Acosta underwent facial surgery today as her countenance was badly damaged. She also suffered internal injuries. And the instructor, whose ankle was also badly damaged, was receiving emergency care as well.

In a statement issued to The Consortium Monday afternoon, Bohlke International Airways, owner of the Diamond DA20 aircraft that crashed, said the Federal Aviation Administration would conduct a full investigation into the accident, but that the company’s focus was on the recovery of the victims.

“We are thankful to the emergency medical personnel for their immediate response to this accident,” said Bohlke International Airways President, William Bohlke. “It will take some time to learn exactly what happened, but we are currently focused on the complete recovery of the two people involved.”

The incident occurred at about 11:51 a.m. on Sunday, officials from the Police Department and 911 said. Police officers could be seen filing in and out of Bohlke Airways, located just west of the airport, following the crash.

An image made available to The Consortium shows the wreckage of the aircraft, which appears to be broken in two pieces near the center.