Thursday, February 1, 2018

Beechcraft 35-A33 Debonair, N9378Y: Fatal accident occurred January 30, 2018 in Helenwood, Scott County, Tennessee

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

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Cleveland

Aircraft crashed due to unknown circumstances in a wooded area.

Date: 31-JAN-18

Time: 01:03:00Z
Regis#: N9378Y
Aircraft Make: BEECH
Aircraft Model: 35 A33
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
Operation: 91

David and Vicki Maxwell

Vicki Maxwell, Beechcraft 35-A33 Debonair (N9378Y), Dave Maxwell and Sage (Miniature Labradoodle)

The pilot who survived a deadly plane crash in Scott County is fighting for his life in the hospital.

The University of Tennessee Medical Center said David Maxwell was in critical condition as of the morning of February 1, 2018.

The wreckage of his plane that was also carrying his wife Vicki Maxwell and their dog had been found in Scott County on Wednesday, January 31 after it was reported missing. The plane had crashed the afternoon prior on January 30.

The wife died in the crash. The pilot and dog survived and had been trapped in the plane overnight before being discovered.

Scott County Sheriff Ronnie Phillips said the plane was spotted just before 9 a.m. Wednesday by a USDA helicopter from wildlife management while they were hog hunting. The plane was found off a cliff line in the 500 block of Old Jamestown Road in Helenwood by New River.

The sheriff said David Maxwell was taken to the hospital via LIFESTAR around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday.

According to the initial investigation, the Federal Aviation Administration said the plane was a Beechcraft 35-A33 Debonair that left Venice Municipal Airport in Venice, Florida, on Tuesday morning. The FAA issued an alert when the aircraft did not arrive at its destination in Urbana, Ohio. It was determined the plane was last spotted in Scott County before it disappeared from air traffic tracking systems.

Civil air patrol also had units up Tuesday night and Wednesday morning searching for the couple. A ground search started around midnight after they received a call from the FAA that a plane might be down in a wooded area near the unincorporated community of Helenwood.

Early Wednesday morning, a post from David and Vicki Maxwell’s daughter asking for help finding her parents was being shared widely on Facebook.

Erin Patton said her parents and their dog were flying home from Florida to their home in Springfield, Ohio, in a light aircraft on Tuesday. She said the plane went off the radar while flying around 1:55 p.m. that day in Scott County.

The civil air patrol believes the plane crashed around 4 p.m. Tuesday. Search teams weren't notified of the crash until about eight hours later.

Tennessee Wing Commander Colonel Dent Young was part of the search. He said the Maxwells did not file a flight plan. While it's not required, Young said it's also not safe to go without.

"The aircraft crashed about 4 p.m. last night. If they'd have filed a flight plan, the search would have started by 6 p.m. or so, instead of starting at 11:45 at night. So for 8 hours they were in the airplane on the ground with nobody looking for them," Young said.

The National Transportation Safety Board is working to determine the cause of the crash alongside the FAA investigation.

Original article can be found here ➤

HUNTSVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) - A woman is dead and her husband injured after a plane crashed in in Scott County. 

Erin Patton, an Ohio woman, posted on Facebook that her parents, Vicki and David Maxwell, and their dog were flying from Florida to Ohio on Tuesday when their plane disappeared. 

The Scott County Sheriff's Department says the Maxwell's plane was found just south of Huntsville around 8 a.m. after an overnight search. Officials say the Vicki was killed in the crash. David and their dog survived.

David Maxwell, who was piloting the plane, was airlifted to UT Medical Center. His condition is critical.  

Scott County sheriff's officials said a Civil Air Patrol plane searching the area overnight was able to pick up a signal from the missing plane, but couldn't pinpoint the location. 

"We knew from radar forensics approximately where the aircraft would have been," said Dent Young with Civil Air Patrol. "We centered our search on that, spent about two hours doing that."

Young says because it was so dark ground crews were not able to be sent out. 

The search by ground began around 7:00 am and the search by air began around 8:30 am. 

"While they were beginning their search we were notified that a USDA helicopter which had been in the area on another mission had been diverted to assist us in the search and they had located the aircraft," said Young.

Temperatures in Scott County dropped to 21 degrees overnight according to the National Weather Service.

According to the FAA, the Beechcraft Debonair plane left Venice Municipal Airport in Florida on Tuesday morning. When the plane didn't land at its destination in Urbana, Ohio, 800 miles away, authorities began their search. 

Young says the plane did not have a flight plan.

"This pilot was flying under what we call VFR, visual flight rules, and while not required to file a flight plan, if the pilot had filed a flight plan before they took off from Florida, this rescue effort, and it would have been a rescue effort, would have started about two hours after the air craft was over due to land"

Instead the search effort didn't start until eight hours after the probable landing time. 

The NTSB and FAA will arrive on the scene Friday to begin the investigation into what caused the crash. The investigation could take months. 

Original article can be found here ➤

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