Thursday, October 26, 2017

Cessna 182, N9350X: Fatal accident occurred August 09, 2008 near Young Lake, Juneau, Alaska

In August 2008, a Cessna 182 airplane took off from Young Lake about 15 miles south of Juneau en route to the Juneau International Airport. It never made it. 

On board were 56-year-old Brian Andrews and his 24-year-old son Brandon. Brian Andrews was the deputy commissioner for the Alaska Department of Revenue at the time. The wreckage — along with the two men in the plane — remained missing.

This past Wednesday, that might have changed.

A man reported to the Alaska State Troopers that he and a group of friends and family found the wreckage of a float-equipped Cessna 182 airplane on Admiralty Island and that he found human remains inside as well, Alaska State Troopers Spokesperson Tim DeSpain said Friday.

“We’re reasonably certain, from his description and documentation, that it is that (Andrews’) plane,” DeSpain said.

National Transportation Safety Board Chief Clint Johnson said that the Andrews family has been notified of the discovery.

Brent Andrews, Brian’s son and Brandon’s brother, wrote a blog post Saturday about the discovery, saying that the people who found the plane are “lifelong friends” of the Andrews family.

“I understand that this news has been, and will be, a shock to some,” Brent wrote. “For some, and for my family, it has lead to a resurgence in all the feelings that arose when Dad and Brandon went missing, especially as we still miss your presence every day.”

The wreckage was found near Young Lake, Johnson said.

Members of the Juneau Mountain Rescue Group, a State Trooper and Mike Hodges from the NTSB are investigating the crash site, having flown to Young Lake on a U.S. Forest Service flight.

Johnson said the team arrived on Admiralty Island on Saturday afternoon, too late in the day to make the hike to the wreckage. They spent the night at a nearby cabin and started their journey to the wreckage Sunday morning. Johnson said that from the report Troopers receieved, there appears to have been a post-crash fire. They’re not sure how much of the plane remains, Johnson said.

They will seek to identify not only the plane but the remains, DeSpain said. There will be a tentative identification of the remains, he said, but it could take some time for the state medical examiner’s office to positively identify the remains.

On his blog post, Brent said the group of investigators were able to identify both the plane and the remains, though Johnson said Saturday that the group hasn’t been able to fully investigate.

According to the NTSB crash report filed in 2008, the men on board were flying supplies back from a family camping trip. Andrews’ youngest son reported that at the conclusion of the family’s camping trip, they determined that they had too much camping gear to safely take it to Juneau on one trip. They decided that three of them would fly back to Juneau and then Brian and Brandon would make one more round-trip flight to bring back the additional gear.

The plane departed the airport in Juneau at about 3:40 p.m. on Aug. 9, according to the report, and was expected to be back around 4:30 p.m. When the plane still wasn’t back at 7:15 p.m., the youngest son reported the plane overdue.

The Coast Guard, along with Alaska State Troopers and Civil Air Patrol, searched a 1,000-square mile area for the plane in 2008, but found nothing. A four-member team from Juneau Mountain Rescue hiked to the cabin the family was at, and found that the gear had been retrieved. The NTSB crash report said the two men were “presumed to have been killed.”

“I know that their disappearance was a very rare case,” Brent wrote Saturday, “and I’m glad that since 2008 there have been improvements in aircraft emergency signal requirements, photo reconnaissance, and other technologies, so that families in the future won’t have to conduct such searches for their loved ones.”

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Juneau, Alaska

Aircraft crashed under unknown circumstances. The two (2) souls on board were fatally injured. Subject of an alert notice issued August 09, 2018. Missing aircraft wreckage located October 25, 2017

Date: 09-AUG-08
Time: 00:00:00Z
Regis#: N9350X
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: C182
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: ANC08FAMS01
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, August 09, 2008 in Juneau, AK
Aircraft: CESSNA 182E, registration: N9350X
Injuries: 2 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 August 9, 2008, about 1600 Alaska daylight time, a float-equipped Cessna 182 airplane, N9350X, departed from a remote lake about 15 miles south of Juneau, Alaska, en route to the Juneau International Airport Seaplane Base, Juneau. When the airplane did not arrive in Juneau, it was reported overdue. The airplane remains missing and is presumed to have crashed about 1615 while en route to Juneau. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) personal flight under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91, when the accident occurred. The private certificated pilot, and the sole pilot-rated passenger, are presumed to have been killed. Instrument meteorological conditions were reported along the airplane's anticipated flight path, and no flight plan was filed.

An Alaska State Trooper that participated in the search reported that family members said that the accident flight was the second of two round trip flights between Young Lake and Juneau, intended to shuttle people and supplies back to Juneau following a family camping trip. The Trooper said about 1915, the pilot's youngest son, who was on board the first round trip flight, walked into the Juneau Flight Service Station to report that the airplane had not returned to Juneau, and to inquire about any radio contact from the overdue airplane. The airplane was officially declared overdue at 1932. The son said that he had expected the accident airplane to return to Juneau about 1630, but he thought that the flight might have been delayed due to poor weather conditions around the Juneau area. 

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC) on August 28, the missing pilot's youngest son reported that on Saturday, August 9, at the conclusion of a family camping trip, the group discovered that they had too much camping gear, which required an additional round trip flight between Young Lake and Juneau. He said that after discussing various options, it was collectively decided that all three would fly back to Juneau together, then one of them would stay behind in Juneau, while the other two returned to pick up the remaining camping gear. After arriving in Juneau, the son decided to wait at the Juneau International Airport Seaplane Base until the airplane returned. He said that the airplane departed from Juneau about 1540, with an anticipated return time of 1630. 

The son reported that his father and older brother on board the missing airplane were both experienced pilots, but said that his father was seated in the left seat when the airplane departed Juneau. He said that he was confident that his father was flying the airplane at the time of their disappearance. 

During a telephone conversation with the NTSB IIC on August 12, an Alaska State Trooper that participated in the search reported that a witness recalled seeing the accident airplane depart from Young Lake about 1600. Also, search and rescue personnel reported that the camping gear that had been left behind at Young Lake was gone. 

The missing airplane's anticipated flight path would have been over about 15 miles of ocean. The terrain around the Juneau area is characterized by tree-covered steep mountainous island terrain, numerous ocean channels, and an extensive shoreline, containing small coves and bays. The area frequently has low ceilings and reduced visibility due to rain, fog, and mist. 

Search and rescue personnel from the U.S. Coast Guard, Air Station Sitka, surface vessels, aerial and ground search volunteers participated in search operations. Coast Guard personnel suspended the official search on August 20, 2008. 


The pilot held a private pilot certificate with airplane single-engine land and single-engine sea, and instrument ratings. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on May 1, 2008, and contained no limitations.

No personal flight records were located for the pilot, and the aeronautical experience listed on page 3 of this report was obtained from FAA records on file in the Airman and Medical Records Center located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. On the pilot's application for medical certificate, dated May 1, 2008, he indicated that his total aeronautical experience was 1,200 flight hours, of which 5 flight hours were accrued in the previous 6 months.


The closest weather reporting facility was the Juneau International Airport, the accident airplane's intended destination. At 1629, a weather observation from the Juneau Airport was reporting, in part: Wind, 230 degrees (true) at 5 knots; visibility, 2.5 statute miles with rain and mist; clouds and sky condition, 200 feet scattered, 1,300 feet broken, 2,000 feet overcast; temperature, 53 degrees F; dew point, 53 degrees F; altimeter, 29.90 inHg. 


After the airplane departed from Juneau there were no reports of communications with the missing airplane. 

No emergency transmitter locator (ELT) signal was received by search personnel.


The U.S. Coast Guard, and the Alaska State Troopers, Juneau, conducted extensive air, water, and ground searches. The official search was suspended by Coast Guard personnel on August 20, 2008. Family members and volunteers continued to search for the missing airplane. 

Search personnel reported that survival time, in water less than 40 degrees F, is typically less than one hour.

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