Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Arnold Palmer Regional Airport (KLBE) to get scaled-back apron rehab

The Westmoreland County Airport Authority Tuesday awarded a contract for rehabilitating the apron at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport with a reduced scope that keeps the project within budget.

Derry Construction Company, which also was chosen to repave and strengthen the runway at the Unity airport, submitted the sole bid for the apron work, according to authority engineer Scott Kunselman, of GAI Consultants.

Upon his recommendation, the authority awarded the contract along with a change order, reducing the cost from about $1.3 million to $985,249.

He said the contractor's bid was “in the ballpark of where we wanted to be, but it worked out higher than the money we had available. It's a rehabilitation project, so we can adjust our quantities down to match the money we have available.”

Kunselman estimated the trimmed price will allow the authority to complete milling and an overlay of new pavement on about half of the apron — beginning at the southwest end, which hasn't seen major work for a decade or more. He said sealcoating likely will be used to preserve the northeast end of the apron, which was patched four years ago.

The contract award is contingent upon approval by the state Bureau of Aviation, he said.

Runway shutdown slated

Executive Director Gabe Monzo reminded the authority board that the runway at Arnold Palmer Regional will be shut down Sept. 12-20 so that Derry Construction can mill, repave and repair cracks on it.

“We're going to try to make every attempt we can to make that as bearable as possible and as short as possible,” Monzo said, noting favorable weather could speed up that $2.5 million project. During the shutdown, he said, Spirit Airlines will offer flights linking Pittsburgh International Airport with the same airports normally reached from Arnold Palmer Regional.

Master plan approved

Kunselman reported officials with the Federal Aviation Administration have signed off on the master plan for the Unity airport, which proposes more than $63 million in capital improvement projects through 2034.

As part of that plan, the authority has completed rehabilitation of a taxiway and is nearly done with expansion of parking.

Pre-construction meetings with contractors were planned this week for development of a new vestibule and exit for passengers on arriving flights and of a new access road that will connect to a roundabout PennDOT is constructing on Route 981.

The authority also is contemplating expansion of the terminal, to provide passenger bridges for multiple simultaneous flights, and widening of the runway.

“Especially in difficult weather times, that extra 50 feet of runway width is really helpful,” Monzo said. 

Original article can be found here ➤ http://triblive.com

Loaded pistol found in carry-on bag at Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport (KBHM) for 31st time this year

Another loaded gun was found early Tuesday inside a passenger's carry-on bag at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport.

TSA Regional spokesman Mark Howell said the Smith and Wesson .380-caliber pistol was discovered about 5 a.m. TSA immediately alerted police at the airport, who took possession of the bag and escorted the passenger out of the checkpoint area. It wasn't immediately known whether any arrests were made.

The discovery was the 31st time a gun was found at security checkpoints by TSA officers in Birmingham so far this year. Last year, a total of 45 firearms were found at the checkpoint.

Howell said TSA wants to remind passengers that it is important for them to thoroughly search their bags for any potential dangerous weapons or prohibited items before departing for the airport. While guns may be transported in checked baggage - they must be declared to the airline, in a proper carrying case and unloaded - they are prohibited in carry-on bags.

Safety is the first concern of TSA, he said, having guns in bags that are traveling with you on the aircraft is dangerous to other travelers and can be easily mistaken as an intentional attempt to bring a prohibited item onto an aircraft.

"Passengers are responsible for the contents of bags they bring to the checkpoint," Howell said. "Our advice is to look through bags thoroughly before coming to the airport to make sure there are no illegal or prohibited items."

In addition to potential criminal charges, passengers who bring firearms to a checkpoint face civil penalties from TSA.

Story and comments ➤ http://www.al.com

Rans S-6S Super Coyote, N39KS: Incident occurred August 07, 2017 in Elcho, Langlade County, Wisconsin

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Milwaukee, Wisconsin


Aircraft on water landing, landed gear down.

Date: 08-AUG-17
Time: 00:15:00Z
Regis#: N39KS
Aircraft Make: RANS
Aircraft Model: S6S
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)

ELCHO - The pilot of a small floatplane made it out of Otter Lake in Elcho unhurt on Monday night.

He crash landed on the water at about 7:30 p.m.

The Langlade County Sheriff's Office believes the pilot didn't retract his landing gear, which is designed for solid-ground landings. When his pontoons hit the water, the landing gear got caught, and the plane flipped upside down.

As of Tuesday, that Rans S-6S plane sat on the shore of Otter Lake. It took a dive, towing, and rescue team to get it there.

"With diving for as long as I have, we've done lots of recoveries on UTVs and ATVs and snowmobiles, and vehicles," said Elcho Assistant Fire Chief Geoff Kupfer. "This was the first aircraft."

Kupfer had been doing a training dive in Antigo and raced to Otter Lake once he heard about the situation.

"Threw my gear in the back, and I threw a tarp on the seat, and I left in a full wetsuit and dive gear and headed back to Elcho," he said.

Kupfer and a local team arrived to find the plane completely upside down in Otter Lake, floating on overturned pontoons. Kupfer called his friend, Jerry Leonard, who owns Leonard Towing and Recovery in Pelican Lake.

"Snowmobiles are pretty easy. Cars can be challenging," Leonard said "The initial challenge is, it's a plane. What do you do?"

Leonard jumped into the water with Kupfer and others. They worked with the help of a fork barge from Pelican Piers in Pelican Lake.

"We tried to figure out how you're going to 'upright' something you don't 'upright' on a daily basis," Leonard said. "We figured out what we could rig to, what we could hook to, without more damage to the plane."

An ATV helped drag the plane to the shore of Otter Lake. It had a wet engine but no structural damage.

"The aircraft stayed in good shape," Kupfer said. "No cosmetic things that you could tell it was really damaged."

The Langlade County Sheriff's Office got in touch with federal investigators after the crash. The National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

Story and video ➤ http://www.wjfw.com

LANGLADE CO., WIS. (WSAW) The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating after a float plane flipped and started sinking while attempting to land on Otter Lake near Elcho in Langlade County Monday.

Around 7:30 p.m. the Langlade County Sheriff's Office, Elcho first responders and the Oneida County Dive Team responded to the lake after getting a report that a plane flipped and was sinking.

The pilot was the lone occupant of the plane and got out safely. The aircraft involved is a Rans S-6S equipped with floats.

The initial investigation shows that the pilot may have failed to retract landing gear prior to setting down on the water.

The Wisconsin DNR also responded to the scene for the possibility of contaminants in the water, which ended up being a non-issue.

The National Transportation Safety Board is continuing to investigate the incident.


ELCHO, WI (WSAU-WXPR) -- No one was injured Monday evening when a float plane flipped on Otter Lake near Elcho.

The Langlade County Sheriff's Department reported the pilot is thought to have made an error with the landing gear as the plane was about to set  down on the lake.

The pilot was the lone occupant was not injured in the landing. 

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident.


Museum brings back Atlanta Airport of the 1920s

WILLIAMSON, Ga. - It's hard to believe, but once upon a time, the sky wasn't filled with jumbo jets and travelers didn't have to wait in long security lines.  And now, visiting the Atlanta Airport of the 1920s is possible, thanks to a unique museum just south of Metro Atlanta.

The Candler Field Museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays and is located at the Peach State Aerodrome in Williamson.  The museum recreates the Atlanta Airport of the 1920s-30s (originally called Candler Field, hence the name of the museum) with displays of vintage aircraft and cars, clothing, and other memorabilia.  In 2013, the museum created the Candler Field Youth Mentorship Program, with the goal of teaching young men and women to maintain the aircraft and inspire an interest in the field of aviation.  

The program is open to young men and women aged 14 to 20, and requirements include one work day per week or four days per month.

Good Day Atlanta's Paul Milliken spent the morning going back in time at the Candler Field Museum, learning more about the history of aviation in Atlanta and meeting some of the young men and women prepared to carry on the tradition in the future.

Story and video ➤ http://www.fox5atlanta.com

Malfunctions release jet engine ‘bleed air’ into cabins causing foul smells aboard some flights in the United States

A JetBlue Airways plane at John F. Kennedy International Airport. The carrier suffered a 'fume incident' this month. 

The smell of jet fuel is fairly common in the passenger cabin when your plane is preparing to taxi.

Far less so is the aroma of dirty socks, rancid cheese, or a wet dog – the typical unpleasant notice that engine oil vapors have also seeped in.

These smells are usually found in jet engine “bleed air”, which is outside air that has been shunted from the engines into an air-conditioning system and then to the cabin. In various systems – cabin pressurisation, water-tank storage pressure, even heating to dissipate wing ice – this air is highly useful to the plane’s operation.

Yet when engine seals deteriorate, the bleed air can mix with fumes from high-temperature synthetic engine oil. At high-enough concentrations, flight crews and passengers can grow ill, forcing pilots to divert to the closest airport. The latest publicly known incident was on August 2, when a Florida-bound JetBlue Airways flight diverted to Oklahoma City, where several people were treated for breathing difficulties. In October 2016, a British Airways Airbus A380 bound for London from California diverted to Vancouver after all 25 crew members became ill. Cabin fumes were suspected in that case.

Given the potential for catastrophe, these “toxic fume events” have spurred airline labour organisations to lobby for passage of a US senate measure called the Cabin Air Safety Act. The legislation, from the senator Richard Blumenthal, a Connecticut Democrat, would require the Federal Aviation Administration to devise a standard form for incident reports from pilots, flight attendants, and maintenance technicians. The agency would then publish a quarterly tally, require annual training so flight crews could identify fume events, and make airlines install carbon monoxide sensors fleet wide.

Mr. Blumenthal’s proposal was offered in June as an amendment to legislation reauthorizing the Federal Aviation Administration, and co-sponsored by two other Democratic senators. A similar measure on fumes is pending in the House.

Existing FAA rules on fume event reporting apply to airlines as entities, while the proposed law would cover pilots, flight attendants and maintenance personnel individually.

Gregory Martin, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, said the agency received reports from carriers of 98 fume events in 2015 out of almost 9 million flights. Kathy Grannis Allen, a spokeswoman for the industry lobbying group Airlines For America, said in the Federal Aviation Administration told Congress in 2015 that the “risk of these issues” is “extremely low”.

The passenger jet engine-air design dates to the 1950s and has been used in virtually all commercial airliners save the Boeing 787, which uses electrical power for air conditioning and other tasks of bleed air. Boeing said this approach allows the engine to operate more efficiently and uses all the high-speed air to generate thrust.

In 2015, the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organisation issued guidelines for flight crew training and reporting of fume events. “Often oil fumes do not smell like oil,” the group said. “Instead, they are typically described as smelling like dirty socks/smelly feet, foul, or musty.” American’s 737 operations manual uses similar terms for engine oil at high temperatures: “Sweat, locker room, dirty sock, rancid cheese, wet dog, burning rubber, musty, sour milk, (fresh oil) sweet, mild irritation to eyes.”

The frequency of these fume events is difficult to assess, but estimates run to as many as 2.6 per day. The Allied Pilots Association (APA), which represents American’s  pilots, has cited as many as 20,000 fume incidents over the past decade, or about five per day.

One reason for the rough estimates is that each carrier typically has different procedures on how pilots and maintenance technicians characterise and then address a fume issue, said Dennis Tajer, a spokesman for the 15,000-member APA.

“It’s all done on a parochial basis, as each airline sees an issue,” said Mr. Tajer, a Boeing 737 captain who said he experienced a fume event earlier this year while commanding a flight to Chicago. “We took off from Orlando and just after lift-off … I looked at my first officer and she looked back at me holding her hand up to her nose,” he said. Mr Tajer said he strapped on his oxygen mask and considered returning to the airport but the fumes dissipated above 7,000 feet and they decided to continue.

The pilots’ union has been pressing American to add a distinct fumes checklist for pilots, one that is separate from a lengthier checklist for smoke and fumes in the aircraft. Spirit Airlines has taken that approach in a fumes checklist for its Airbus fleet.

“Most of us will never experience a serious fume event,” the union said last autumn in its member newsletter, likening these to the rarity of jet engine failures in flight – a common scenario in pilot training but unusual in commercial aviation. “However, it is incumbent upon us to know how to react.”

The issue has led to at least two lawsuits against Boeing brought by five Alaska Air Group flight attendants who fell ill while working on Boeing 737s. In some cases, the employee is unable to return to work, according to the lawsuits, filed in Chicago.

“Most Americans go to work with the expectation of breathing clean air, but until we achieve better standards for cabin air quality, flight attendants don’t have this guarantee,” said Sara Nelson, the president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, the largest US attendants’ union. 

“When your workplace is 30,000 feet above the ground, you can’t step outside for a breath of fresh air,” added Bob Ross, the president of the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, which represents 26,000 attendants at American.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.thenational.ae

Bumped by Allegiant, hermit crabs get a free ride to Illinois on Delta

FORT WALTON BEACH — Two hermit crabs evicted from a plane at the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport last week have caught a new ride to Illinois.

The crabs, named Spirit and Rainbow, belong to 7-year-old Ella and 5-year-old Elin Palmer, whose parents own a condo in Panama City Beach.

Shelly and Richard Palmer told the Daily News that they called the airport as well as Allegiant Airlines to make sure they could bring the crabs on the plane. They also say that they walked into the airport, checked with an Allegiant employee at the ticket counter, carried the crabs through the TSA screening and boarded the plane with them.

But before the plane pulled away from the gate, the flight attendant told them it was against the law to fly with hermit crabs and confiscated them.

A gate agent came and got the small plastic tank, which Ella had been holding, and told the girls the crabs would be sent to a “shelter.”

“She sobbed for 15 minutes in my husband’s lap,” Shelly said of Ella’s reaction.

A spokeswoman for Allegiant Airlines said they have no record of the Palmers calling the airline until after the incident. Although their website does not specifically mention whether hermit crabs can be brought on board, it does specify that dogs and cats are the only live animals allowed outside of the cargo hold.

The crabs were confiscated on a Saturday. When Panhandle Animal Welfare Society Director Dee Thompson came into work Monday, she got a call from Shelly Palmer asking about her crabs.

Thompson called out to the airport and tracked down the crustaceans, which were staying in an employee’s home on his coffee table. An animal control officer picked them up the next day.

The Palmers plan to fly back into town Thursday for a few days, this time using Delta Airlines. Shelly spent Tuesday morning on the phone with Delta, which agreed to ship the crabs back to Illinois at no charge.

“Delta for the win,” Shelly texted the Daily News, adding that it would have cost $95.46 to ship the crabs.

She added that the Delta employee told her, “This is so much bigger than hermit crabs ... It’s the integrity and honesty of a company that earns people’s trust and Delta is so humbled and proud to be a part of this happy ending.”

Spirit and Rainbow’s fates have already taken a turn for the better since their arrival at PAWS a week ago.

Thompson gave Spirit, who arrived in a purple painted shell, a new home to move into and the crab transferred into it Monday night. A new shell is waiting for Rainbow back in Illinois, as well as a 10-gallon tank and two new hermit crabs, purchased after the family returned home.

“Now they will be one big happy crab family,” Shelly texted. “It may seem silly — just some hermit crabs.

“It’s the principle of it,” she added. “We were not treated with good customer service.”

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

Ultimate Air Shuttle lands at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport (KPDK)

Members of the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, Chamblee Chamber of Commerce, and Chamblee City Council welcome members of Ultimate Air Shuttle to Dekalb-Peachtree Airport.

The newest charter air service at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport is aiming to go sky-high serving the North Atlanta business community and beyond.

Ultimate Air Shuttle, which offers jet travel to and from cities like Chicago, New York and Charlotte expanded to Atlanta in March after listening to what their passengers wanted, said Regional Manager Jeania Uplinger.

“More than 90 percent of our business travelers live or work in the Buckhead area and we’re excited to serve this community,” she said.

The plane seats thirty people and flies into DeKalb-Peachtree Airport each morning and departs in the afternoon Monday through Friday. And for those living or working in the north metro area, the benefits to flying in and out of Georgia’s second busiest airport are numerous, said Uplinger.

“It can be exhausting trying to travel to Hartsfield-Jackson with navigating traffic, paying for parking, lugging all your belongings across the airport and more. With us, passengers can arrive 25 minutes before we depart. We do the TSA pre-check before your arrival, there’s check in at our counter and we take your bags up to the plane,” she said. “There is also free parking, no baggage fees and wine, fruits and vegetables, cocktails, juice, soda and more so that our passengers arrive rested and stress free.”

The company recently celebrated a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the airport with members of the Chamblee Chamber of Commerce and Uplinger said working with city of Chamblee officials and DeKalb Peachtree airport officials has been a positive experience.

“Once we expressed that we are not a commercial airline and are not looking to expand any runways, we found everyone we’ve worked with to be very welcoming,” Uplinger said.

While Ultimate Air Shuttle is approved to provide public charter service to any airport within the United States, the business is not looking to copy commercial airline models of multiple seating capacities and aggressive growth plans.

The twin jet engine planes must still follow a strenuous safety and security program and the company boasts no aircraft accidents or incidents.

“We want to provide a simple, comfortable and hassle-free way to travel,” said Uplinger.

Through September 5, first time fliers can purchase any round trip ticket, excluding Monday morning flights, for $299. For more information, visit www.ultimateairshuttle.com/promotions/

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

Editorial: Buffalo Niagara International Airport (KBUF) deserves a shot at flights to Europe

The Buffalo Niagara International Airport is poised to grow, and what better direction than toward Western Europe?

The notion of regularly scheduled nonstop transatlantic flights out of Buffalo is a logical extension of service at the airport, which serves millions of passengers from Western New York and Southern Ontario.

The Buffalo airport has the infrastructure and sophisticated operation necessary for expanded service, without the congestion that is a hallmark of larger facilities. International carriers looking for a bigger slice of the American market should consider making a home here.

Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority officials are bullish on the idea of scheduled international flights out of the local airport. Timing is everything.
As News political reporter Robert J. McCarthy recently wrote, the larger eastern gateway airports are becoming more congested and European carriers are starting to turn to midsize U.S. airports – Buffalo’s category.

Midsize airports already benefiting from the move include Newburgh’s Stewart International, home to Norwegian Airlines flights to Edinburgh, Scotland, and elsewhere in Europe. Bradley International, serving Hartford, Conn., just attracted the Irish airline Aer Lingus. Bradley is the nation’s 54th busiest airport and is often considered a peer to Buffalo, which ranks 58th nationally with about 4.6 million passengers each year.

The NFTA is looking to capitalize on that wave of expansion of service to Europe. William R. Vanecek, the NFTA’s director of aviation, noted, “I’d like to say it’s only a matter of time.”

Hope lies in the numerous points of contact between Buffalo airport staff and European-based airlines. There is a lot to recommend here; high passenger count, an efficient, easy-to-use facility and comparatively uncluttered airspace compared to European gateways such as New York City.

That uncluttered airspace is attractive to international carriers that face restrictions on the number of flights allowed at busy East Coast airports. While Buffalo’s 8,827-foot runway can handle jumbo jets, this market would likely see smaller aircraft, according to Vanecek.

Filling the aircraft likely would not be an issue. There is already a healthy influx of Canadian passengers unwilling to brave the congestion at Pearson International in Toronto or seeking lower fares. Cars with Canadian license plates fill the Buffalo airport parking lot. Canadians have been known to cross the border under the iffiest weather conditions to catch flights.

One way Buffalo is not competitive is in incentives. Other midsize airports have put together incentive packages worth millions of dollars to airlines. The NFTA is trying to compete by offering to waive landing fees for two years, along with other cost breaks and a “significant” marketing package.

Landing an international carrier will not happen right away. Southwest and JetBlue took their time adding Buffalo to their schedules. Frontier Airlines recently started serving Buffalo with nonstop flights to Denver and four Florida cities after 18 years of courtship.

But Buffalo’s airport has enough advantages that travelers headed to Europe may some day be able to skip that tiresome change of planes on the East Coast.

Original article can be found here ➤ http://buffalonews.com

Airlines and passengers to benefit from pilotless planes, says new study

In an era when the airline industry is on the brink of a pilot shortage and technology is king, passengers still aren’t very keen on flying on a pilotless plane—even though it could save them money.

According to a study of 8,000 consumers by UBS, 54% of respondents said they were “unlikely” take a flight aboard an aircraft without pilots behind the controls while 17% of people said they would try it.

However, an 11% saving could be passed onto U.S. passengers, assuming there were no added costs for flying pilotless and the air carriers don’t keep the benefits, UBS’s research said. Despite the potential savings, half of those who responded to the study still said they wouldn’t purchase a ticket on a flight without a pilot, even if was cheaper.

Flyers from the U.S. were the largest group willing to take to the skies on a plane run solely on technology at 27%, compared to other countries, whereas respondents from France and Germany were the least likely to fly on a plane without a pilot. The demographic of respondents that would most likely fly on a pilotless flight were 18-34 year-olds who were “more educated.”

Additionally, the UBS study found that transitioning to pilotless aircraft, which has the potential to begin in 2025 in both passenger and cargo planes, could save the airline industry more than $30 billion. Commercial carriers could save on fuel gains related to better-optimized flight paths. The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the trade association for the world’s airlines which represents roughly 275 carriers, forecasts the fuel bill for airlines will total $129 billion, representing 18.8 percent of average operating costs, as prices for jet fuel have begun to rise in tandem with oil prices. The research also surmised that airlines could “potentially benefit” from lower operating and crew costs.

Also, the study suggests safety would improve if pilots were removed from the flight deck—citing the majority of accidents are due to human error— and therefore driving down the cost of insurance premiums.

Furthermore, airplane maker Boeing estimates that the world will need more than 630,000 new pilots by 2036.  By eliminating the use of pilots, the “pressure to train and recruit” aviators could be alleviated. The training required to become a pilot for a commercial airliner can run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. For example, JetBlue Gateway Select pilot training program, which provides instruction for aspiring pilots for a career at the airline, costs about $125,000 Opens a New Window. . UBS’s data sees potential savings from pilot training being in the billions of dollars.

But the savings would not only be tied to the commercial airline sector. Both the business jet and civil helicopter industries could reap the benefits of up to $3 billion and $2.1 billion, respectively.

UBS’s study also said that if the reduction from an aircraft being piloted by two aviators was too abrupt over the next 10-20 years, there could first be a move to having only one pilot in the cockpit and one on the ground.

Of course, there are also potential hurdles that could keep this from becoming reality. The study said “regulatory framework will define the waves of technology advancements becoming reality and cargo will likely be at the forefront,” along with consumer perception.

Story and video ➤ http://www.foxbusiness.com

New England Patriots become first NFL team to have own planes

The New England Patriots have become the first NFL team to buy their own plane to fly to games. Make that two planes.

Sources tell ESPN that the reigning Super Bowl champions bought two 767 Boeing wide-body jets in the offseason and retrofitted them with all first-class seats, some of which recline completely. On the outside of at least one of the planes is the team logo and five Lombardi trophies on the tail.

These planes, depending on miles flown and condition, generally cost between $5 million and $65 million. A source said the planes the Patriots bought are extended range, which allows the planes to fly nonstop for about 12 hours.

A brand-new plane could cost $200 million.

One plane will be used as the main plane for the season, while the other will be the backup, with flight operations being run out of Providence, Rhode Island, sources said. Patriots spokesman Stacey James said team officials would not be publicly commenting on the acquisitions.

NFL teams haven't thought much about buying their own planes in the past, with only 10 games on the road. But charter travel has gotten more expensive over the past couple of years, due to the major carriers starting to retire the bigger planes that fly the teams around.

The bigger planes -- which can carry a full team, its support staff and the onerous amount of equipment the team needs on the road -- are being retired because they are nearing a point in their life cycle where they have to be stripped, fully gutted and reworked in order to satisfy Federal Aviation Administration requirements. Airlines like Delta and American have chosen to begin retiring the planes instead of going through what would be a cost-prohibitive reboot.

American said last year that it would no longer fly the Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Pittsburgh Steelers and Miami Dolphins. At least two of those teams, the Steelers and the Dolphins, took their business to charter-only airline Miami Air, sources said.

The rising cost of chartering flights for NFL teams makes the decision to buy a plane somewhat easier. Sources with knowledge of the deals teams have done with charter companies say the 10 round-trip flights per season can cost up to $4 million.

It is expected that team-owned planes will help give athletes a leg up on the recovery process, which is one of the areas that interested the Patriots.

In 2014, a concept plane designed by a firm named Teague, in partnership with Nike, sought to equalize the effects of air travel on mind and body as well as get a head start on recovery through an in-flight training room. Two years later, Russian aircraft maker Sukhoi built its concept plane, which had features including a "smart toilet" that measured an athlete's state of hydration and sensors in seats that could detect an athlete's physiological changes.

The Patriots will allow for the planes to be rented out during the season when they are not needed for team travel, sources said. It is not known how aggressively the team will seek to make up some of its costs by advertising the planes' availability.

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

Protesters blast Los Angeles Police Department drone plan

LOS ANGELES >> Three years after it acquired a pair of drones that it chose not to deploy in response to protests about potential surveillance uses, the Los Angeles Police Department plans on taking its first step today in opening a drone pilot program.

But the move comes amid protests from civil libertarians who feel the aerial devices are intrusive. 

The LAPD’s move comes weeks after a majority of the Los Angeles County Sheriff Civilian Oversight commissioners voted they wanted Sheriff Jim McDonnell to stop flying a drone used in law enforcement operations, and as local organizations continue to express concerns about law enforcement drones.

Despite the opposition, the LAPD is pushing forward with plans for a pilot drone program and will be presenting it today to the Board of Police Commissioners. Two organizations, the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition and the Drone- Free LAPD/No Drones, LA! Campaign, held a protest and news conference before the meeting.

A pair of Draganflyer X6 drones were given to the LAPD by Seattle in 2014, but they have never been deployed. Police Chief Charlie Beck said at the time that the drones could be used during tactical events such as manhunts and standoffs. But he also said the department planned to work closely with the American Civil Liberties Union to ensure the drones would not infringe on individual privacy rights.

The chief in 2014 also defended accepting the drones, and said such devices are already being used by private citizens, businesses and sports teams.

Even if the drones are initially confined to narrow uses, they could easily undergo “mission creep” and be used to invade the privacy of the city’s residents, according to some of the groups opposed to them.

“While the whole country is demanding an end to police militarization, a concerted effort to add military-style drone technology to LAPD’s vast arsenal of tactical weapons is underway,” the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition said in a statement.

The Los Angeles City Council cleared the way in June for the city’s fire department to begin using drones. A Los Angeles Fire Department report on the potential program addressed the issue of privacy concerns and said the devices would not be used to monitor or provide surveillance for law enforcement.

Despite the assurance the LAFD drones would not be used for surveillance or police operations, the ACLU and the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition still objected.

“We reject the use of these drones because what you have, even in this policy document, is gaping holes for mission creep. So the issue is not if, but when, and we have seen that happen over and over again,” said Hamid Khan of the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition.

Story and comments ➤ http://www.dailynews.com

U.S. Jet Takes Evasive Action After Close Call With Iranian Drone

An Iranian drone came dangerously close to a U.S. Navy F/A-18 as it was preparing to land on the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf on Tuesday, according to U.S. Naval Forces Central Command.

Despite numerous radio calls, the drone repeatedly changed altitude and came within 100 vertical feet of the jet. The close call, while the jet was flying in international airspace, forced the aircraft to maneuver to avoid collision.

This the 13th unsafe and or unprofessional interaction between American and Iranian maritime forces this year, according to a statement from the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command.

The aircraft from the Nimitz are conducting regular sorties for Operation Inherent Resolve in Iraq and Syria, but a U.S. military official could not say whether this jet was returning from one of those missions.

The drone "created a collision hazard," U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said, adding that the actions were "not in keeping with maritime customs and laws."

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

Kingston, Jamaica: Cabinet approves US$22.7m contract for maritime aircraft

KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — Cabinet has approved a contract in the sum of US$22.742 million for the completion of maritime aircraft patrol capability for the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF).

Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator Ruel Reid, made the disclosure at a post-Cabinet Press briefing held recently at Jamaica House.

Giving a breakdown of the figure, Senator Reid said US$16.873 million will go to Sierra Nevada Corporation for the integration of Mission Systems into the newly acquired Beechcraft King Air Maritime Patrol Aircraft.

He further informed that a sum of US$2.567 million has been allocated to International Built Environment Consultant for the design and construction of a secure new integrated hangar facility at the JDF Air Wing Base at the Norman Manley International Airport for the new maritime patrol aircraft.

Additionally, Textron Aviation Parts and Distribution is allocated an amount of US$984,960 for the supply of tools and spare parts and integrated logistics support for the new maritime patrol aircraft.

Meanwhile, a contract was also approved for the supply of medical gases to the Western Regional Health Authority in the amount of $121.594 million to Industrial Gases Limited.

Cabinet also approved a contract for the procurement of 450,000 solid waste cold-water meters by the National Water Commission (NWC) in the amount of $40.760 million to Diehl Metering GMbH. Additionally, a contract valued at $206.08 million was approved to Toyota Jamaica Limited for the supply of 50 full-panel vans, by the NWC.

Original article ➤ http://www.jamaicaobserver.com

Lawmakers wrestling with public response to drones

BOSTON —With a patchwork of local rules on unmanned aircraft across the nation, there is bound to be some confusion about what measures can legally be taken when a drone becomes a pest, or even dangerous.

Yet, there is at least one blanket rule nationwide. Homeowners and local police are not allowed to blast one out of the sky.

The question of how far a homeowner or law enforcement can go to stop a pesky drone came up Monday as state lawmakers from across the country, lawyers and a Federal Aviation Administration official discussed the emerging unmanned aircraft system (UAS) technology.

“In the state of Arkansas, we have a lot of shotguns,” Arkansas Rep. Stephen Meeks, a Greenbrier Republican, began. “And this is going to become more and more of an issue. Do I as a landowner if I feel threatened by one of these drones who’s being invasive, does a landowner or property owner have a right to shoot one of these out of the sky, or conversely do law enforcement have a right to shoot one of these out of the sky?”

“UAS is an aircraft. It’s a felony to shoot down an aircraft,” replied Marke “Hoot” Gibson, a retired major general in the U.S. Air Force, who now works on drone policy for the FAA. He said, “We can’t go out and take down these vehicles — even we can’t.”

Gibson said the Departments of Defense and of Energy have some “limited capability” to take down dangerous drones, and Congress is interested in expanding the government’s authority to protect the public from threats posed by drones. The retired general said Major League Baseball, the National Football League and other organizations that run large outdoor venues are “very concerned” about the hazards drones can pose, and there is a “rush” on technology to detect and counter them.

The drone discussion took place at a panel organized by the National Conference of State Legislatures, which is meeting at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center this week.

Brendan Schulman, vice president of policy and legal affairs for DJI, the largest manufacturer of civilian drones in the world, said his company equips drones with a system to prevent them from being flown over airports, prisons, and nuclear power plants.

Schulman also said that while it is technically illegal to shoot down a drone, he doesn’t know of any case in which that has been enforced, and self-defense might apply in the circumstance Meeks described. Schulman said the better course would be if the drone’s operator could be identified so that the offended party could talk to the person. The FAA in June established a rule-making committee to “create standards for remotely identifying and tracking unmanned aircraft during operations.”

The FA. bars civilian drone operators from flying their crafts above 400 feet, according to Nevada Assemblyman Elliott Anderson, a Las Vegas Democrat who moderated the panel discussion. The minimum flying height for planes in rural areas is 500 feet aboveground.

Anderson said Nevada passed a “comprehensive law” in 2015 that restricted people from flying drones recklessly, and defined trespassing as flying a drone over someone’s property at 250 feet or less.

Massachusetts lawmakers are considering imposing new regulations on drones, and the city of Newton passed an ordinance that, according to the Newton Tab, requires operators to keep the drone within sight and obtain permission before flying over someone else’s property. According to the paper, Newton drone owner Michael Singer sued the city over the regulation in January, arguing it effectively prohibits commercial drone operation within the city.

Gibson said drones, which have myriad military applications, are the “most fundamental change to aviation in our lifetimes.” Schulman said civilian drone operators want to abide by the rules, citing the roughly 800,000 operators who have registered with the FAA.

Sens. Michael Moore, a Millbury Democrat, and Sen. Patrick O’Connor, a Weymouth Republican, have both filed bills to restrict law enforcement’s use of drones, requiring a warrant for police to use the aircraft as an investigatory tool. The Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security held a hearing on the legislation in May.

Original article ➤ http://www.gloucestertimes.com

Airworthiness Directives: Piper Aircraft, Inc.

Federal Aviation Administration
14 CFR Part 39
[Docket No.FAA-2017-0759; Product Identifier 2017-CE-023-AD; Amendment 39-18980; AD2017-16-03]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Piper Aircraft, Inc. Airplanes

AGENCY:Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:Final rule; request for comments.

SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Piper Aircraft, Inc. (Piper) Model PA-46-600TP (M600) airplanes. This AD requires inspection of the aft wing spars with repair as necessary. This AD was prompted by a report from Piper of the aft wing spar cracking during wing assembly. We are issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.  

Read more here ➤ https://www.federalregister.gov

Drone disrupts firefighting efforts in Prater Fire

Crews wasted 10 minutes of firefighting time when a drone interrupted their work battling the Prater Fire over the weekend.

They had to stop when a drone flew over the area and disrupted the path of a helicopter, which were being used to survey the blaze and drop retardant.

The fire grew to 2,800 acres and was 40 percent contained as of Monday morning. Fire crews expect to have the fire fully contained by Monday night, according to Fire Marshal Bob King, of the Sparks Fire Department.

King said the fire was reported at about 3 p.m. on Sunday in an area on East Prater Way and Pete’s Way, behind the Northern Nevada Medical Center. Crews initially believed 20 homes were being threatened and ambulances were temporarily kept from arriving at the hospital until the fire began moving north and east.

The Sparks Police Department issued a statement on Sunday asking the owner of the drone to stop flying.

“Absolutely no drones are (to) be flown anywhere near the fire,” the Sparks Police Department said in a statement on Sunday. “It is interrupting the air drops for getting water on the fire. If you are flying a drone stop now.”

Gallop said the incident marked the first time firefighting efforts had to be suspended because of a drone. Crews had to wait until the drone was out of the air before returning to work.

“The danger in flying a drone, it obstructs emergency personnel from doing their jobs, and in this case, saving homes,” Reno Police Officer Ken Gallop said on Monday. “Flying drones is irresponsible and illegal and puts people at risk.”

Gallop said drones can easily take down a helicopter and that drone owners need to register their aircrafts and alert traffic control when flying them.

It was unknown who was flying the drone or where it came from.

Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, allow owners to control the small, helicopter-like technology from a distance, sometimes with cameras or sensors. Though such devices are helpful for capturing a scenic view, drone opponents say that such devices also can be used to violate privacy and that amateur pilots can cause damage to airplanes, buildings and people if they aren’t trained in flight safety.

In addition to registration, the FAA has other guidelines that it requires of drone hobbyists. These include:

Drones must be kept below 400 feet and never be out of the line of sight of the operator.
They must stay 5 miles away from airports and never fly near other aircraft.
Operators must never fly drones while under the influence.
Drones shouldn’t be flown over large groups of people, stadiums or sporting events.

Model airplanes, drones and quadcopters are unmanned aerial systems and are regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration. Flying an unregistered drone could result in a fine of up to $27,500, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation.

Criminal penalties include a fine of up to $250,000 and up to three years in jail.

Once registered, the FAA issues an ID number that can be used for all drones that an individual owns. Registration is good for three years.

Story and video ➤ http://www.rgj.com

Boeing 747, China cargo flight CKK227: Incident occurred August 07, 2017 in Anchorage, Alaska

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Anchorage, Alaska

China cargo flight CKK227, Boeing 747. Aircraft on taxi struck a truck with the number 4 engine. No injuries. Damage in minor.

Date: 07-AUG-17
Time: 11:29:00Z
Regis#: CKK227
Aircraft Make: BOEING
Aircraft Model: B747
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Activity: CARGO
Flight Phase: TAXI (TXI)
Aircraft Operator: CHINA CARGO
Flight Number: CCK227

Piper PA-28R-200, N33759, Flight Time Club LLC: Incident occurred August 04, 2017 at Searcy Municipal Airport (KSRC), White County, Arkansas

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Little Rock, Arkansas

Flight Time Club LLC: http://registry.faa.gov/N33759

Aircraft landed and gear collapsed.

Date: 04-AUG-17
Time: 22:45:00Z
Regis#: N33759
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: PA28
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)

Incident occurred August 07, 2017 in Dubuque County, Iowa

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Des Moines, Iowa

Helicopter during aerial application, severed a powerline. Landed without incident.

Date: 07-AUG-17
Time: 00:00:00Z
Regis#: UNKN
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
State: IOWA

Piper PA-44-180 Seminole, N79NA, Coast Flight Training and Management Inc: Incident occurred August 07, 2017 in San Marcos, Texas

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Antonio, Texas

Coast Flight Training and Management Inc


Aircraft during flight, window separated from fuselage and fell to the ground.

Date: 07-AUG-17

Time: 22:00:00Z
Regis#: N79NA
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: PA44
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
State: TEXAS

Diamond DA-20C-1 Eclipse, N879CT, Utah Valley University: Incident occurred August 07, 2017 in Nephi, Juab County, Utah

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Salt Lake City, Utah

Utah Valley University:   http://registry.faa.gov/N879CT

Aircraft force landed in a field.

Date: 07-AUG-17
Time: 20:15:00Z
Regis#: N879CT
Aircraft Make: DIAMOND
Aircraft Model: DA20
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: NONE
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
State: UTAH

Cessna 172P Skyhawk, N52126, TSS Flying Club Inc: Fatal accident occurred September 27, 2016 near Davis Airport (W50), Laytonsville, Montgomery County, Maryland

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

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA329
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, September 27, 2016 in Laytonsville, MD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/09/2017
Aircraft: CESSNA 172, registration: N52126
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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.

Earlier on the day of the accident, the pilot/mechanic flew the airplane from its home base airport to another airport to perform scheduled maintenance. Airport security video captured the entire maintenance event and showed the pilot/mechanic removing the engine cowling, draining the engine oil, and inspecting the spark plugs, air filter, and other components. The video did not show him adding engine oil before reinstalling the engine cowling and departing on the accident flight. Shortly after takeoff, the pilot reported to an air traffic controller that the airplane's engine was losing power and that he was returning to the airport. Witnesses reported that the airplane began to fly erratically, rolled into a steep bank, and descended to ground impact about 1 mile from the airport. The witness observations were consistent with the pilot failing to maintain airspeed following the loss of engine power, which resulted in the airplane exceeding its critical angle of attack and experiencing an aerodynamic stall. Postaccident disassembly of the engine revealed catastrophic failure of internal engine components and signatures consistent with no lubrication and high heat.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot/mechanic's failure to maintain airspeed following a loss of engine power, which resulted in the airplane exceeding its critical angle of attack and experiencing an aerodynamic stall. Also causal was the pilot/mechanic's failure to service the engine with oil following maintenance, which resulted in the total loss of engine power.

William A. Hughes, 78, of Gaithersburg, Maryland

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Baltimore, Maryland
Textron; Wichita, Kansas
Lycoming; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

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

Investigation Docket  - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

TSS Flying Club Inc: http://registry.faa.gov/N52126

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA329
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, September 27, 2016 in Laytonsville, MD
Aircraft: CESSNA 172, registration: N52126
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 September 27, 2016, about 1830 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172P, N52126, was destroyed when it impacted terrain following a loss of control near Laytonsville, Maryland. The commercial pilot/mechanic was fatally injured. The airplane was owned by TSS Flying Club, Inc., and was operated by the pilot. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The airplane departed from Davis Airport (W50) in Laytonsville and was destined for Montgomery County Airpark (GAI), Gaithersburg, Maryland.

According to representatives at the TSS Flying Club, about 1400, the pilot/mechanic flew the airplane from the club's base at GAI to W50 to complete a 100-hour maintenance inspection of the airplane. A review of airport security video at W50 revealed that the pilot taxied the airplane onto the maintenance ramp, shut down the engine, and uncowled the engine. He then drained the engine oil and inspected the spark plugs, air filter, and other engine components before reinstalling the engine cowling. The pilot then pushed the airplane back, started the engine, and taxied to the runway for takeoff. The video did not depict the pilot/mechanic servicing the engine with oil. 

According to air traffic control audio communication recordings provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), shortly after takeoff from W50, the pilot reported to an air traffic controller that he was "losing an engine" and was returning to the airport. Several witnesses reported that the airplane flew in a southeasterly direction, completed a 180° turn, and flew back toward W50. The airplane was then seen "flying erratically" before it stabilized momentarily and then "fell out of the sky sideways." One witness stated he could see the top of the airplane's wing during its entire descent to the ground. Review of airport security surveillance video revealed that about 8 minutes after the airplane departed, it began emitting a smoke plume. At that point, the airplane was about 1 mile southeast of the airport. 


According to FAA records, the pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. His most recent FAA third-class medical certificate was issued on April 13, 2016. He reported 1,183 total hours of flight experience on that date. He also held a mechanic certificate with ratings for airframe and powerplant. 


The four-seat, high-wing airplane was manufactured in 1981. It was powered by a 180-horsepower Lycoming O-360-A4M engine and was equipped with a two-bladed Sensenich propeller. The airplane's maintenance records were destroyed in the postimpact fire and maintenance intervals could not be verified. 


The 1815 recorded weather at GAI, located 4 miles southwest of the accident site, included wind from 180° at 5 knots, visibility 10 miles, clear skies, temperature 22°C, dew point 11°C, and an altimeter setting of 29.94 inches of mercury.


The wreckage was examined at the accident site, and all major components were accounted for at the scene. The engine compartment, cockpit, cabin area, empennage, and most of both wings were consumed by postcrash fire. Flight control cable continuity was confirmed from the cockpit area to the flight control surfaces. The two-bladed propeller remained attached to the engine. One blade was bent aft, partially melted, and displayed leading edge nicks. The outboard half of the other propeller blade was consumed by fire.

The engine was separated from the wreckage and placed on an engine stand for examination. The oil sump, oil filter, and the accessory section were destroyed by fire. Examination of the starter housing and starter ring gear support revealed no witness marks.

The top spark plugs were removed, and an attempt to rotate the crankshaft with the propeller was unsuccessful. The valve covers were removed, and they contained no oil or oil residue. Investigators then attempted to remove the cylinders. Only cylinder Nos. 1 and 2 could be removed from the case base studs. The No. 1 cylinder had internal damage to the piston, and the connecting rod exhibited restricted rotation about the crankshaft. The No. 2 cylinder connecting rod was found to move freely. 

The rear accessory housing was removed, and the oil pump was disassembled. Investigators attempted to rotate the oil pump drive shaft by hand with negative results. The steel gears were locked and would not rotate. The accessory housing side of the oil pump was discolored and exhibited signs consistent with a lack of lubrication.

The case halves were split. The No. 3 intake tappet body and the No. 4 exhaust tappet body were found damaged and fell out of the case. The outside of the case at the No. 4 cylinder was fractured. The No. 3 cylinder was thermally damaged at the cylinder head to steel barrel interface. The inside of the case was noted to be void of residual oil.

The camshaft exhibited heat signatures consistent with a lack of lubrication. The Nos. 1 and 2 connecting rod bearings were removed from the crankshaft. The No. 1 connecting rod bearing exhibited discoloration and heat damage consistent with a lack of lubrication. Once the case halves were split, the No. 4 connecting rod was found broken and discolored. The No. 4 connecting rod cap was found inside the case half and was severely damaged, consistent with impact with the rotating crankshaft. The No. 4 connecting rod bearing halves were found discolored and impact damaged, consistent with the broken connecting rod and crankshaft striking the halves and flattening the bearing. 

The crankshaft was removed and found to be highly discolored at the connecting rod and main journals. The No. 4 journal exhibited a crack about 2 inches long near the middle of the journal. The No. 3 bearing exhibited discoloration and showed the copper underlay. The bearing edges exhibited signs of extruding of the surfaces. All engine damage signatures were consistent with a lack of lubrication.


The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, State of Maryland, performed an autopsy on the pilot. The autopsy findings included "multiple injuries."

The FAA Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed forensic toxicology on specimens from the pilot. The toxicology report stated that no ethanol or drugs were detected in the urine.

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA329
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, September 27, 2016 in Laytonsville, MD
Aircraft: CESSNA 172, registration: N52126
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 September 27, 2016, about 1830 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172P, N52126, was destroyed when it impacted terrain near Laytonsville, Maryland. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. The airplane departed from Davis Airport (W50), Laytonsville, and was destined for Montgomery County Airpark (GAI), Gaithersburg, Maryland. The airplane was owned by TSS Flying Club Inc., and operated by a private individual. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to initial information received from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the pilot reported that the airplane was experiencing engine problems shortly after takeoff. Several witnesses reported that they saw the airplane flying in a southeasterly direction. It then made a 180 degree turn and flew back toward W50. The airplane then started "flying erratically" but gained control for a few seconds and then lost control and "fell out of the sky sideways." One witness stated he could see the top of the airplane's wing during its entire descent to the ground.

The wreckage was subsequently located about 2 miles southeast of W50, in the middle of a corn field. The airplane had extensive thermal damage from a postcrash fire. Flight control cable continuity was established from the cockpit area to all flight control surfaces. Impact marks in the corn-field revealed that the left wing impacted the ground first, then the airplane cartwheeled and flipped 180 degrees before coming to rest on a heading of 130 degrees. The propeller remained attached to the engine. The engine could not be rotated by hand and valve train continuity could not be verified. The engine was retained for further examination.

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land. His most recent FAA third-class medical certificate was issued on April 13, 2016. At that time, he reported a total flight experience of 1,183 hours.