Thursday, November 02, 2017

Man sentenced for lying about plane crash: Piper PA 28-140, N6665J, accident occurred October 31, 2015 at Perry–Warsaw Airport (01G), Wyoming County, New York

BUFFALO — A Steuben County man was sentenced Tuesday in connection with a landing accident at Perry-Warsaw Airport. 

Brian Woodhams, 40, of Wayland had been convicted of making a false statements to a federal, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He was sentenced to time served and one year of supervised release.

Woodhams had received a student pilot license in October 2015. He was allowed to fly by himself, but required to have a flight instructor aboard if he carried passengers.

Woodhams was landing his Piper Cherokee 140 on October 31, 2015. He overcorrected and hit the brakes after the plane veered right.

The plane’s nose went into a ditch off the runway. Woodhams had a 15-year-old passenger at the time, but no flight instructor.

Safety inspectors from the Federal Aviation Administration viewed the aircraft two days later.

During a telephone conversation, Woodhams told inspectors he had suffered a bloody nose and hurt his shin during the accident. He also said he was the plane’s only occupant, but that his son approached immediately afterward — only to slip and fall, and suffer a bloody nose while climbing up a flap.

Woodhams met with inspectors in-person on Nov. 4, 2015 and told them again that he was the plane’s only occupant, with his son arriving later. He was informed a witness reported seeing his son in the plane, which he again denied.

Six days later, Woodhams submitted an official incident report saying a passenger was on the plane and injured in the incident.

Woodhams was interviewed again by a U.S. Department of Transportation special agent and FAA inspectors on Jan. 10, 2017. He stated yet again he was the only person on the plane at the time.

When questioned about evidence developed during the investigation, he denied once more that he had a passenger, and offered an alternative explanation which also proved false, federal officials said.

Original article:

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Rochester, New York 

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket  - National Transportation Safety Board:

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: GAA16CA037
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, October 31, 2015 in Perry, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/15/2016
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28-140, registration: N6665J
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 student pilot reported that during the landing roll he heard something fall in the back seat. He looked back; when he looked forward again the airplane had veered to the right. The student pilot attempted to correct with the rudder, but reported that he "overcorrected" to the left and then to the right, and then "hammered" on the brakes. Subsequently the airplane skid off the runway to the right and impacted a ditch. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing.

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 student pilot's failure to maintain vigilance, which resulted in a loss of directional control during the landing roll.


  1. There are long term well understood reasons why a student pilot cannot take a non-instructing passenger. I think it safe to say we constantly observe the battle between ego and pride vs common sense rules.

    The question is, do I/we do the same thing, only under slightly different circumstances?

    At least there was only a couple of bloody noses and a cracked bird. It could have been much worse.

    I wonder if the aircraft insurance will pay. It would be interesting to know.

  2. You mean alternative facts didn't hold up in court?! Darn...

  3. The big question is why in the hell would you take your 15 year old in an airplane you clearly are not qualified to fly. That is what I would call Child Endangerment, is it not?