Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Beech A36 Bonanza 36, N8169Y: Fatal accident occurred March 28, 2017 in Dadeville, Tallapoosa County, Alabama

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office; Birmingham, Alabama
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Continental Motors; Mobile, Alabama

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report -  National Transportation Safety Board:

David Currier:

NTSB Identification: ERA17FA140
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, March 28, 2017 in Dadeville, AL
Aircraft: BEECH A36, registration: N8169Y
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious.

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

On March 28, 2017, about 1200 central daylight time, a Beech A36, N8169Y, was destroyed by impact and a postcrash fire following a forced landing near Dadeville, Alabama. The commercial pilot, who was also the owner of the airplane was seriously injured, and the passenger was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for the personal flight which was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The flight departed from Enterprise Municipal Airport (EDN), Enterprise, Alabama at 1118, and was destined for Upper Cumberland Regional Airport (SRB), Sparta, Tennessee.

According to preliminary air traffic control (ATC) and radar data obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the airplane was in cruise flight about 5,000 feet msl when it began a descent about 1156. At 1157:11, the airplane had descended to 4,025 feet msl when the pilot contacted ATC and declared, "N8169Y I have a… it appears to be an engine failure… declare an emergency at this time."

Over the next 1 minute, the airplane continued on a northerly track before it began a turn to the west as the controller identified the closest public airport, private strip, state highway, and open areas for potential forced landing sites, which the pilot acknowledged.

At 1158:59, the airplane was tracking westbound at 1,500 feet msl and 86 knots groundspeed when the pilot announced, "Atlanta 69Y it looks like I'm coming down…" and that he did not have a runway in sight. There were no further communications from the accident airplane. At 1159:34, the last radar target was observed on a westerly track over densely wooded terrain at 874 feet msl and 77 knots groundspeed.

According to FAA airman records, the pilot held a commercial pilot and flight instructor certificates with ratings for rotorcraft-helicopter and instrument helicopter. He held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single engine, and instrument airplane. The pilot's most recent FAA second-class medical certificate was issued November 3, 2016. He declared 11,500 total hours of flight experience on that date. In July of 2016, the pilot declared to his insurance company that he had 11,000 total hours of flight experience, of which 1,000 hours was in airplanes.

The six-seat, single-engine, low-wing, retractable-gear airplane was manufactured in 1977 and was equipped with a Continental Motors 300-horsepower reciprocating engine.

The 1155 automated weather observation at Thomas C. Russel Field (ALX), 14 nautical miles northwest of the accident site, included scattered clouds at 2,500 feet agl, 10 statute miles visibility, and wind from 270° at 6 knots. The temperature was 24° C, the dew point was 18° C, and the altimeter setting was 30.03 inches of mercury.

The airplane was examined at the accident site, about 650 feet elevation, and all major components were accounted for at the scene. The wreckage path was about 140 feet in length, and oriented about 320°.

The initial impact point was in trees about 30 feet above the ground. Most tree trunks displayed blunt fractures, but some displayed clean angular cuts. Tree trunk and branch sections displaying angular cuts were scattered along the wreckage path. The main wreckage was inverted, faced opposite the direction of travel, and was consumed by postcrash fire. Control cable continuity was established from the cockpit area to the flight control surface attachment points. The flap actuator position was consistent with flaps set at 0°. The elevator trim actuator position was consistent with a 10° tab down position. The landing gear was retracted.

The fuel selector was in the right-tank position.

Examination of the engine revealed that all accessories were destroyed by fire except for the engine-driven fuel pump. The three-bladed propeller was attached at the hub, but damaged by impact and fire. One propeller blade was loose in its hub.

The engine-driven fuel pump was removed and its driveshaft was intact and rotated freely. The fuel inlet screen was removed, and was absent of debris. The spark plugs were removed and showed normal wear and coloration. The engine could not be rotated by hand, and was retained for further examination.

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

Photo of David Currier from family Facebook page.

Jeanette Carol Currier

Undated (WTVY)- The pilot of a small aircraft that crashed, killing his wife, has died. David Currier’s passing was confirmed by his daughter on social media and Sunset Funeral Home owner Robert Byrd who will handle funeral arrangements.

The single engine plane piloted by Currier crashed March 28 near Dadeville, AL, about a mile from U.S. 280. Jeanette Currier was pronounced dead at the scene while David Currier was flown by helicopter to Georgia hospital. The flight originated at Enterprise Airport.

The couple lived in Daleville. Currier retired from the U.S. Army and served as an instructor pilot. The cause of the crash is pending a federal investigation.

Currier’s daughter, Rebecca Suggs of Dothan, wrote on Facebook, “Dad's injuries were so extensive and his body was badly broken. God is good and we believe and have peace knowing God took Daddy at his appointed time. Dad was our hero. Dad was our champion fighting for us all until the very end. His faith, integrity and unconditional love is an inspiration to us all.”

Original article can be found here:

Jeannette Carol and David Lee Currier

ALEA Special Agent David Williams speaks about Tuesday’s rescue. Williams also explained the aviation unit’s training and mission Wednesday in Montgomery.

Despite the tragedy of Tuesday’s plane crash near Dadeville, heroes emerged.

This time the Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Department and other first responders were helped out by the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency’s Aviation Unit with a long line rescue of pilot David Lee Currier of Daleville.

For Alabama Law Enforcement Agency Special Agent David Williams, the rescue was one of the most intense the unit has been involved in.

“It is pretty high on the list for intensity,” Williams said. “It was a downed aircraft, with a survivor and extracting the survivor before medical personnel were able to arrive.”

It was also a unique rescue but not something the unit could’t do.

“This was the first time that this unit has been utilized to rescue a survivor of an aircraft crash,” Williams said. “We do a few rescues a year, typically hikers with injures like a broken ankle that would take hours to get out by walking or carrying.”

Tuesday’s rescue featured most of the unit’s missions, first search, rescue and then extraction.

“We were contacted by the Montgomery Post who had been contacted by the FAA about a missing aircraft that had reported possible engine loss around Tallapoosa County,” Williams said. “We responded to the area in a helicopter to try and locate the aircraft.”

From there Williams explained that the rescue started to get unique.

“Upon locating the aircraft and surveying the scene, we realized there were two victims on the ground and one appeared to be alive. So we immediately called back for more support for a rescue crew to extract the possible survivor.”

Williams explained the area would not have made for an easy removal of a survivor.

Rescuers explained that it appear the pilot might have removed his wife from the wreckage and was able to keep the flames at bay around where they laid until help arrived.

That help came from Williams and the flight team above. They guided local law enforcement to the site.

“It was very rural, like logging timber country,” Williams said. “There was no road access to where the aircraft went down.

“It does not have to be that far if you don’t have access to it and you are having to walk in…terrain and growth might make it a good while before they get in. The advantage we have in the air is we have an overview of the area.We can walk them to the spot and it played a role yesterday in getting ground assets to the site.”

The aviation unit is constantly training for such events and Williams said it takes a while before a rescuer can swing on the long line.

“There is extensive training that goes with it,” Williams said. “We start by getting comfortable with the equipment and safety around the helicopter.

“We start with some low impact things to get a new rescuer comfortable – how to hook up, how to package some the equipment and backboard we have. Then we mover over to the practice area of the airport and lower and do rescues from the bed of truck.”

In addition to rescues like Tuesday’s aircraft crash, the aviation unit carries out other search and rescues by doing searches for missing dementia patients, Alzheimer’s patients or autistic children.

Williams explained that many of the unit’s missions have an instant gratification.

“Anytime that we get to help someone it’s instant gratification,” Williams said. “It is very rewarding for us to know that we got to rescue that victim that was in peril or maybe even perish by not being able to get them to medical personnel.”


Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Bureau spent Wednesday combing through the wreckage of an airplane crash in a remote area near Dadeville, searching for clues into what caused the plane to go down.

The crash, which occurred just before 1 p.m. Tuesday, claimed the life 66-year-old Jeannette Carol Currier of Daleville and her husband who was the pilot of the single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza is clinging to life.

David Lee Currier, 67, was flown from the wreckage after a daring long-rope rescue by Alabama Law Enforcement Agency Troopers. He was flown to Columbus Medical Center where he was stabilized before being taken to Atlanta’s Grady Memorial Hospital, which houses one of the Southeast’s top burn units.

Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbett said that Currier is listed in critical, but stable condition. Abbett said that information he received Wednesday morning indicated that while the pilot had a long road ahead, there was hope that Currier may recover.

“The FAA arrived last night and the NTSB got here this morning,” Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbett said. “They have been working to collect evidence and retrieve items to help them with their investigation. They will pack all that up and go back to try to determine a cause. This is their scene. We are just here to assist and secure the area.”

Abbett said the initial alert came in just before 1 p.m. after the Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Department received a call that a plane may be in distress over Tallapoosa County.

ALEA helicopters were dispatched and were able to get a visual of the crash scene in a remote area off Slaughter’s Crossing, not too far from the Thweatt Industrial Park.

“It was a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza that had left from Enterprise and was headed to Sparta, Tennessee,” Abbett said. “The terrain here was a problem and to get to the scene we had to hike in. That was complicated because there was a fire associated with the crash.

“We appreciate the efforts of all the agencies who responded to help.”

While the results of the FAA and NTSB probe may take more than a week to complete, all signs point to mechanical failure.

Online flight information suggests that the flight began to veer off course and lose altitude quickly.

Data shows the plane made a sharp turn at 12:54 p.m. and then began to lose altitude at a rate of about 1,000 feet per minute. The last radar contact came at 12:59 p.m. and the plane was down to 900 feet.  The plane’s airspeed also fell at a rapid rate as well.

Speculation is that Currier may have turned to head toward Alexander City’s Russell Field when it went down.

ALEA, the Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Office, Dadeville Police Department, Dadeville Fire as well as Camp Hill Police Department and Alabama Forestry Service all responded to help in the recovery efforts.

Original article can be found here:

A plane crash on Tuesday afternoon left one local resident dead and the other with serious injuries.

Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbett confirmed the crash that happened around 12:30 p.m. near Dadeville.

Jeanette Carol Currier, 66, and her husband , 67 year-old David Lee Currier, were traveling to Sparta, Tennessee, from Enterprise in their single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft when the plane crashed near Slaughter’s Cross Road off of U.S. Highway 280.

Abbett said Jeanette Currier died at the scene. David Currier was airlifted by state helicopter to a hospital at Columbus, Georgia.

David Currier retired from the Army as a CW 5, and currently works on Fort Rucker as an instructor pilot for URS contractors.

“He was a professional and his peers and students really liked him,” said a fellow employee and coworker of David Currier’s. “We went to church together and he was respected by everyone.”

According to a post on the Currier’s daughter’s social media account, the family is asking for prayers for their father who is now listed in critical condition at the burn unit in Atlanta.

The post also said that Jeanette Currier was an amazing example of love, kindness, forgiveness and faith, as well as a friend, cheerleader and dream maker.


1 comment:

gretnabear said...

Crash site "Slaughter’s Cross Road off of U.S. Highway 280." U.S. Highway 280 is a dual four lane NW/SE hwy, just south and west of the accident site. Local Weather was 4:55 PM 73.4 °F 63.9 °F 72% 29.96 in 10.0 mi West 3.5 mph - N/A Scattered Clouds