Saturday, June 17, 2017

Vans RV-3, N177TT: Fatal accident occurred June 17, 2017 near Payette Municipal Airport (S75), Payette County, Idaho

Prescott "Gene" Wilkie of Payette


The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Boise, Idaho 

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

Prescott W. Wilkie: http://registry.faa.gov/N177TT

NTSB Identification: WPR17FA128
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 17, 2017 in Payette, ID
Aircraft: PRESCOT E. WILKIE RV-3, registration: N177TT
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 17, 2017, about 1145 mountain daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Vans RV-3 airplane, N177TT, impacted terrain following the separation of the left wing while maneuvering near Payette, Idaho. The airline transport pilot sustained fatal injuries; the airplane was destroyed. The pilot was operating the airplane under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The local personal flight departed Payette Municipal Airport (S75), Payette, Idaho about 1140. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed.

Witnesses observed the airplane depart Runway 31 and make a steep climbing right turn. They observed the airplane turn left and descend back toward the airport for a low pass over the runway. The airplane then pitched up steeply at the opposite end of the runway and performed another course reversal and low pass in the opposite direction. It repeated this sequence of maneuvers several times. During the course reversal on the last pull-up, the left wing separated and the airplane spiraled into a field.

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






The pilot who was killed in a Saturday plane crash was the sole occupant of the aircraft — a kit plane — he was traveling in.

Prescott “Gene” E. Wilkie, 74, of Payette, died in the crash according to the Payette County Sheriff’s Office on Monday.

Wilkie was well-known in the community.

According to friend and classmate Chuck Kinney, Wilkie moved to Payette from New Meadows when he was a sophomore in high school, and graduated from Payette High School in 1961.

Wilkie was a Vietnam veteran where he flew helicopters, Kinney said, and flew air ambulance helicopters in Hawaii after leaving the military. Wilkie also flew a tour plane for Hawaiian Airlines, and had moved back to Payette about three years ago, Kinney said.

Wilkie didn’t only fly planes, he also owned some.

Payette City Attorney Bert Osborn, who is a general aviation pilot and a member of the Payette Airport Commission, told the Payette City Council Monday that Wilkie, who was also a member of the Airport Commission, owned three hangars at the airport and had “two or three airplanes.”

It is unknown how long Wilkie served on the Airport Commission. He had been involved with the commission for some time, and was formally appointed in 2016.

Osborn said Wilkie’s death in Saturday’s crash was “pretty devastating to the pilots’ community.”

“He had many friends,” Kinney said of Wilkie.

The crash occurred in the area of Northeast 19th Avenue, between Payette Heights and Scotch Pines Road, north of the Payette Airport. The aircraft was a Vans RV3 said Allen Kenitzer, with the Federal Aviation Administration Office of Communications, in an email.

The RV3 is a kit plane from Van’s Aircraft, of Aurora, according to information from the company website.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are still investigating the crash, Kenitzer said, and did not have further information.

http://www.argusobserver.com




PAYETTE — Officials have released the name of the pilot involved in the fatal plane crash near Payette on Saturday afternoon. The man killed was Prescott “Gene” E. Wilkie, 74, of Payette, according to the Payette County Sheriff’s Office on Monday.

He was the only person on the plane when it crashed.

The crash occurred in the area of Northeast 19th Avenue, between Payette Heights and Scotch Pines Road, north of the Payette Airport. The aircraft was a Vans RV-3 said Allen Kenitzer, with the Federal Aviation Administration Office of Communications, in an email.

The RV3 is a kit plane from Van’s Aircraft, of Aurora, according to information from the company website.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are still investigating the crash, Kenitzer said, and did not have further information.

Wilkie, had moved to Payette from New Meadows when he was a sophomore in high school, and graduated from Payette High School in 1961, Chuck Kinney, friend and classmate, said.

Wilkie was a Vietnam veteran where he flew helicopters, Kinney said, and flew air ambulance helicopters in Hawaii after leaving the military. Wilkie also flew a tour plane for Hawaiian Airlines, and had moved back to Payette about three years ago, Kinney said.


“He had many friends,” Kinney said of Wilkie.

Original article can be found here:  http://www.argusobserver.com



A 74-year-old man died after a plane crashed in Payette County Saturday. Monday afternoon he was identified as Prescott "Gene" E. Wilkie of Payette. 

Dispatchers received a call at 11:40 a.m. Saturday, about a plane that had crashed around N.E. 19th Avenue between Payette Heights and Scotchpines Road, about one mile north of the Payette Airport.

"I was just hoping that he was alright, but he wasn't," Kenneth Lisby said.  

Lisby lives near the airport and he said he saw the plane disappear.

"There were two pieces falling out of the sky, and the plane sputtered a little bit and didn't make another sound - just disappeared," he said.

He was doing yard work with his wife when they noticed something wasn’t right.  

"Right over the house and started to circle around, and all of a sudden my wife said, 'there's something going on with that plane,'” he said.

Not long after, he said fire engines raced down his street, heading in the direction he saw the plane disappear.

Lisby doesn’t know the victim but said seeing that plane go down is something that will stick with him.

"I've been thinking about it ever since. You just can't shake it,” he said. "Life is awfully frail."

Payette County deputies and the Federal Aviation Administration are investigating.

Story and video:  http://www.ktvb.com

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