Thursday, October 19, 2017

Lancair Legacy 2000, N259L: Fatal accident occurred October 19, 2017 in Bowie, Cochise County, Arizona

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

Additional Participating entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Scottsdale, Arizona

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Michael L. Peterson:

NTSB Identification: WPR18FA011
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, October 19, 2017 in Bowie, AZ
Aircraft: Peterson Lancair Legacy, registration: N259L
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 October 19, 2017, about 0830 mountain standard time, a Peterson Lancair Legacy 2000, N259L, departed controlled flight and collided with desert terrain near Bowie, Arizona. The pilot/builder was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The commercial pilot, the sole occupant, sustained fatal injuries; the airplane was substantially damaged. The personal cross-country flight departed from Eagle Roost Airpark, Aguila, Arizona about 0710 with a planned destination of Garner Field, Uvalde, Texas. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and it is not known if the pilot had filed a flight plan.

The airplane was based in Aguila and the pilot had planned to attend a fly-in over the weekend in Uvalde, about 745 nm southeast. The pilot had registered for the event a few weeks before the accident and located in the wreckage was a flight plan outlining the intended flight to Uvalde. The flight plan showed that the pilot departed at 0710 and had reached his next planned checkpoint of Buckeye VORTAC at 0739; the next listed checkpoint was San Simon VORTAC.

A witness observed the airplane flying along the ridgeline of the Fisher Hills and begin a series of erratic maneuvers, subsequently diving toward the terrain. The wreckage was located about 17 nm northwest of San Simon VORTAC at an elevation of about 3,860 feet msl. The accident site was located in sparsely populated desert terrain, with the debris stretching over 120 feet with the energy path oriented on a heading of about 155o. In character, the terrain was comprised of dirt and rocks, populated by scattered brush and cactus typical of the southern Arizona region.

The wreckage was transported to a recovery facility 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 

Michael L. Peterson 
November 29, 1948 - October 19, 2017

Michael L. Peterson of Cle Elum, Washington died October 19, 2017 at the age of 68. Arrangements are currently pending.

BOWIE — A Maricopa County man perished in the crash of a single engine plane Oct. 19, north of Bowie.

Michael L. Peterson, 68, of Aguila, was reportedly en route to an event in Texas when the crash occurred, said Carol Capas, spokeswoman for the Cochise County Sheriff's Office.

The National Transportation Safety Board had a recovery crew remove the wreckage at about 4 p.m. Friday. Both the NTSB and FAA will continue the investigation, Capas said. Cause of the crash has not yet been released.

The Flight Safety Foundation website,, described the plane Peterson was flying as an “experimental Peterson-built Legacy 2000.” The plane "experienced an apparent stall/spin and subsequent impact with desert terrain,” and sustained “substantial damage,” the website stated, also reporting that its sole occupant — the pilot — had been fatally injured.

Louise Walden, with Walden Aviation, who manages the Cochise County Airport in Willcox, told the Range News the plane had been flying from California to Texas when it crashed. It had taken off from the Gila Bend Airport that morning.

The Sheriff's Office received the call at 9:23 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 19, about the crash north of I-10, near milepost 355. The caller reported seeing the plane one minute; the next, it was gone.

Using the Sheriff’s Office’s Geronimo helicopter, deputies located the downed aircraft in a remote part of Bowie, inaccessible by anything other than a four-wheel-drive vehicle.

It’s the second fatal plane crash in southeastern Arizona in the past two months. On Sept. 5, an F-16 Fighting Falcon jet crashed near Fort Thomas, killing its pilot.

The pilot was a member of the Iraqi Air Force, training with the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Wing in Tucson.

A similar training exercise became fatal in 2015, when an Iraqi pilot, also training with the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Wing, crashed near Douglas.

Original article ➤

WILLCOX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -  The pilot of a small airplane that died last week after crashing into the desert in southern Arizona has been identified.

Authorities with the Cochise County Sheriff's Department said the pilot, 68-yer-old Michael Peterson, was the only person in the plane when it crashed.

The single engine aircraft he was flying, a homebuilt Lancair Legacy 2000, crashed Thursday in a remote desert area north of Interstate 10, near mile post 155, between the towns of Willcox and Bowie.

Authorities said Peterson was heading from California to Texas when the plane went down about 8:20 a.m.

Peterson had left that morning from Eagle Roost Airpark in Aguila and was heading to Garner Field Airport in Uvalde, Texas.

The crash is under investigation by the National Transportation and Safety Board as well as the Federal Avaition Administration. 

It’s the second fatal plane crash in southeastern Arizona in the past two months. On Sept. 5, an F-16 Fighting Falcon jet crashed near Fort Thomas, killing its pilot.

 Original article can be found here ➤

WILLCOX, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - A pilot of a small plane died in a crash near Willcox Thursday.

According to the Cochise County Sheriff's Office, the pilot was the only person known to be onboard.

A nearby rancher who saw the crash says, "I saw the plane and it didn't sound right. I looked up to the mountain and it was going in circles." 

The crash was north of Interstate 10 near milepost 355, between Bowie and Willcox.

KGUN9 spoke with a man who heard the plane crash and quickly sprung into action.

Officials with Cochise County say National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration have taken over the investigation and should arrive at the scene on Friday.

Story, video and photo gallery ➤

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