Sunday, February 18, 2018

Socata TBM700, N700VX: Fatal accident occurred February 18, 2018 near Evanston-Uinta County Airport (KEVW), Wyoming

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Salt Lake City, Utah

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: 

Location: Evanston, WY
Accident Number: CEN18FA101
Date & Time: 02/18/2018, 1505 MST
Registration: N700VX
Aircraft: SOCATA TBM 700
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On February 18, 2018, about 1505 mountain standard time, a Socata TBM-700A airplane, N700VX, impacted terrain near Evanston, Wyoming. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured, and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Instrument metrological conditions existed at the airport, and the flight operated on an instrument flight rules flight plan. The flight departed the Tulsa International Airport (KTUL), Tulsa, Oklahoma, about 1210 central standard time and was en route to Evanston-Uinta County Airport/Burns Field (KEVW), Evanston, Wyoming.

The pilot was flying the ILS 23 approach to KEVW. During the approach, the airplane turned left about 180° followed by a right turn before disappearing from radar. Several residents heard the airplane and the accident occur. They called emergency responders who dispatched to the accident site. A post-impact fire ensued which consumed large portions of the fuselage and wings.

The first impact point consisted of several trees. The right wingtip was found near one of the trees. The angle of impact was estimated at 60° nose low on a magnetic heading of 358°. The ground impact point consisted of a small divot followed by the engine. The main wreckage consisted of the fuselage, empennage, and left wing. The right wing was displaced from the fuselage and came to rest on the right side of the debris area. All major airplane components were located at the accident site. The airplane was documented and transported to a secure facility for further examination.

At 1453, an automated weather reporting facility at KEVW reported wind from 340° at 13 knots, 1/4-mile visibility with snow and freezing fog, vertical visibility of 800 ft, temperature -27° F, dew point -27° F, and altimeter 29.47 inches. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: SOCATA
Registration: N700VX
Model/Series: TBM 700 A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Instrument Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KEVW, 7163 ft msl
Observation Time: 1453 MST
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: -3°C / -3°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 13 knots, 340°
Lowest Ceiling:  Indefinite (V V) / 800 ft agl
Altimeter Setting: 29.47 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: TULSA, OK (TUL)
Destination: Evanston, WY (EVW) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: Unknown
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  41.288056, -110.981944

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

William and Michelle Patterson

A man and wife who lived in Park City died in a plane crash in Wyoming on Feb. 18 and were remembered as a loving couple.

William Patterson was 71 and Michelle Patterson was 62. They were the only two people aboard the plane. The husband was the pilot.

Rowdy Dean, the chief deputy at the Sheriff's Office in Uinta County, Wyoming, said the crash occurred at a little after 3 p.m. approximately one mile north of Evanston along the Bear River. The Pattersons were found dead at the scene. They were in a Socata TBM 700 single-engine propeller airplane, he said.

Dean said the plane was traveling from Oklahoma and was preparing to land at Evanston-Uinta County Airport in Evanston. It crashed approximately two miles from the airport. He said emergency dispatchers received several calls from people saying an airplane may have crashed. The authorities contacted the airport and learned that a plane was overdue.

Firefighters, Sheriff's Office deputies and a search-and-rescue team looked for a crashed plane before a resident found the wreckage, Dean said. The searchers found the plane in a large patch of willow and cottonwood trees, he said.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating. Dean said the federal officials brought the wreckage to Greeley, Colorado, as part of the investigation.

Dean said the Pattersons had addresses in Park City and Evanston.

Ken Tolpinrud, who lives in the Holiday Ranch neighborhood of Park Meadows, said he and William Patterson served on a homeowners association together. He knew the couple for approximately four years. There was shock and disbelief after people learned of the crash and fatalities, he said.

"They were two of the most gracious and accomplished people my wife and I met, ever," Tolpinrud said.

William Patterson was a retired executive, he said. Tolpinrud said Patterson had his own plane the entire time he knew him, describing him as an experienced pilot and as someone who loved to fly.

Tolpinrud said he flew with Patterson a number of times. He said Patterson enjoyed the "exhilaration of being in the air."

"It just hurts to lose them," he said.

Jason Aguilera, a senior air safety investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board based in Denver, said the work at the accident scene is complete. The plane crashed in a remote part of a ranch, Aguilera, who traveled to the location, said.

Aguilera said there was snow in the area, but the weather conditions at the time of the accident are not yet known.

The National Transportation Safety Board has ordered an autopsy and toxicology report on the pilot's body. Aguilera said the pilot's experience will also be researched. The steps are standard in an investigation of a plane crash. The investigation is expected to take up to 18 months to complete.

Mike LaSalle, who is the manager at the Evanston-Uinta County Airport, said people headed to or from Park City occasionally use the airport. There are also a few people from Park City or Coalville who keep planes there, he said.

Original article can be found here ➤

A woman with connections to Stone Harbor died in a plane crash while traveling in Wyoming with her husband, according to her family.

Michelle Patterson, whose maiden name was Michelle Mehan, died in a plane crash with her husband, William, on Sunday when he tried to land the plane in a field, according to Michelle’s aunt Kathy Dallahan.

No one else was in the plane, which had flown out of Tulsa, Oklahoma. It’s destination was unavailable.

Dallahan said she heard the news from William’s son Monday.

“I asked him if they had survived, and he told me there were no survivors,” Dallahan said.

According to Dallahan, Michelle and William were married for more than eight years. Michelle Patterson leaves four sons, who live on the East Coast, and William Patterson leaves two sons, who live on the West Coast.

Dallahan said Michelle Patterson spent time in Stone Harbor throughout her life. She had lived in Stone Harbor and in Utah.

“(Stone Harbor) was a place she loved so much. She was vibrant, she was cheerful, she was the most wonderful person you’d want to meet,” Dallahan said.

Mayor Judy Davies-Dunhour confirmed Michelle Patterson’s mother, Dolores, lives in Cape May County. Davies-Dunhour said she immediately thought of Michelle Patterson’s mother when she heard the news.

“It’s a phone call no mother should ever get,” Davies-Dunhour said.

KUTV in Salt Lake City, Utah, reported the plane crashed about 3 p.m. Sunday a mile north of Evanston. Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said the single-engine plane was a Socata TBM-700.

Original article ➤

EVANSTON — A single-engine airplane crashed about a mile north of Evanston Sunday afternoon leaving two people dead. 

Officials identified the passengers as William and Michelle Patterson. According to a press release issued by the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office, the plane is registered to William Patterson, listing an Evanston address. Evanston-Uinta County Airport Burns Field manager Mike LaSalle said, however, that the couple lived out of state.

“[The plane] belonged to a guy who lived in Park City, but the airplane was based here,” LaSalle told the Herald on Monday. “They were inbound from Tulsa, Oklahoma, … they were actually headed here from Florida.”

Two residents — one from 2nd Avenue and one from Cottonwood Street — initially called dispatch advising officials of the crash at 3:12 p.m. Sunday.

Hayden Ezell said he was just finishing up some garage work with his dad on 2nd Avenue when they heard the plane go down.

“It sounded like they were flying in a circle or something,” he told the Herald. “It sounded like something was cutting out.” (A flight path available at shows that the plane was traveling southwest toward the airport but made at least one sharp turn to the north before it crashed).

Then, Ezell said, he and his father heard a loud crashing sound. The two immediately hit the road to try to find the plane. They headed to Willow Park, where they could see smoke north of the mobile home park.

“I was going to jump out then and start running,” Ezell said, “but my dad said, ‘Hey, let’s go around this way.’”

The two drove about one mile north on Highway 89 before they stopped and Ezell, with heavy snow falling, sprinted toward the smoke.

First responders struggled to find the plane in the heavy snow, and had some difficulty getting to it once they had a better idea of where it crashed. Smoke could be seen at times from Highway 89 and from Willow Park, but visibility was limited due to the storm.

“Access was kind of an issue … just finding it with the weather we had yesterday [was difficult],” Evanston Fire Department Cpt. Tim Overy said.

Officials eventually reached the crash site via a dirt road off Highway 89.

“It’s really not that difficult to get to other than [for] the old river channels and willows and stuff out there,” Uinta County Sheriff Doug Matthews said.

Meanwhile, Ezell was able to reach the plane on foot, though his heart sank when he realized there was nothing he could do to help the victims.

“I ran out there and was just hoping I could save somebody’s life,” he said, “but I got there and it was completely in flames so there wasn’t anything I could do.

Ezell said he tried to walk around the smoke and he was yelling, hoping someone could hear him. “I just thought maybe I could save somebody’s mom or dad or grandpa,” he said.

LaSalle said he was acquainted with William Patterson, but didn’t know him well.

“I remember him keeping an airplane here … more than 10 years ago,” LaSalle said. “He was here for a couple of winters in 2005-06, somewhere right in there, then I didn’t see him for two or three years. But every time he’d come back after a couple years he’d have a new plane.”

The plane Patterson was flying Sunday was a French model, LaSalle said, a Socata TBM700. He said it was a single-engine turbo prop plane that seated six people, a common type of owner-flown plane.

LaSalle said Sunday’s snowstorm likely played a part in the plane crash.

Officials with the Federal Aviation Agency and National Transportation Safety Board were scheduled to be in Evanston Monday, Cpt. Overy said, but their arrival was bumped to Tuesday due to poor weather.

Original article ➤

EVANSTON, Wyo. — Law enforcement officials on Monday released the names of two people they believe died in a plane crash near Evanston, Wyoming, Sunday. 

The plane was owned by and registered to William Patterson who has an Evanston address, according to a press release from the Uinta County Sheriff's Office.

Patterson and his wife Michelle were believed to be on the plane when it crashed under unknown circumstances en route to the Evanston airport from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Sunday afternoon.

The aircraft caught fire on its way down and burned upon impact. There were no survivors.

Original article can be found here ➤

A husband and wife are believed to be the two people killed Sunday in a small airplane crash in Wyoming, just over the Utah border.

According to the Uinta County Sheriff's Office, in Wyoming, the plan is registered to William Patterson, with an Evanston, Wyoming address. The office said it is believed Michelle Patterson and William Patterson are the two people who were killed in the crash with no survivors.

The county coroner, the sheriff's office and the Federal Aviation Administration continue to investigate the crash.

Officials said the plane crashed one mile north of Evanston near the Bear River.

Original article can be found here ➤

UPDATE: 8:33 p.m. Uinta County Wyoming Sheriffs have confirmed two people have died.

The identities have not yet been released, but the owner of the aircraft has ties to Evanston and/or Park City, according to Sheriffs.

The bodies were both badly burned in the wreck in which the plane caught fire after crashing.

(KUTV) - A small plane crashed near Evanston, Wyoming at 3:07 p.m., killing everyone on board.

According to the Uinta County Wyoming Sheriffs Department, the plane caught fire after crashing about one mile north of Evanston near the Bear River.

According to Ian Gregor with the Federal Aviation Administration, the plane was a Socata TBM-700.

The airplane left out of Tulsa, Oklahoma. It's unknown where the plane was headed.

The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to arrive Monday to help with the investigation. The National Transportation Safety Board will also investigate.

Original article can be found here ➤

EVANSTON, Wyoming (News4Utah) - The Uinta County Wyoming Sheriff's Office confirms a small plane went down outside of Evanston Sunday afternoon.

The crash occurred at 3:07 p.m.

According to Ian Gregor, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, the Socata TBM700 crashed while on approach into Evanston under unknown circumstances. The plane originated from Tulsa, Oklahoma.

There were two people on board the aircraft at the time of the crash. The parties involved have not been identified.

Both the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤

BEAR RIVER, Wyo. — Emergency crews responded to a fatal plane crash north of Evanston, Wyoming Sunday.

A spokesperson for the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office in Wyoming said they were called about a small plane crash shortly after 3 p.m.

The crash occurred near Bear River, about  one mile north of Evanston. 

The aircraft caught on fire after crashing and the sheriff’s office said there are no survivors.

Ian Gregor of the  Federal Aviation Administration Pacific Division says the Socata TBM700 crashed under unknown circumstances while on approach to the airport in Evanston. 

The Federal Aviation Administration states the plane was carrying two people and departed from Tulsa, Oklahoma.

The parties involved have not been identified.

Original article can be found here ➤


CJ Driver said...

Is there a developing pattern with these TBM crashes over the years?

Jesse said...

A promotional sales video for this aircraft is on YouTube:

William Tripp said...

Sometimes your wallet is thicker than your log book.

Anonymous said...

Do pilots ever check the weather at the destination airport? Yea honey its a blinding snow storm but i thing we can make it no go weather is no go weather.

jbermo said...

N700vx's Flight Aware track tells the story -diverted-diverted-diverted.

Anonymous said...

Indeed. 3 diversions. Gettherhitis is a fatal condition. And "if i paid so much for this machine, its job is to get me there, no matter what" which tends to affect the owners of more pricey and capable birds that nonetheless have stringent limitations.

Anonymous said...

I have to wonder how much fatigue played into this accident? He flew from FL to UT for almost 6 1/2 hrs and had to divert 3 times due to weather. I'm sure he just wanted to get on the ground and call it a day which may have caused him to push on into such poor conditions instead of flying to a VFR airport, get some food,rest and try again tomorrow. Sad outcome.

Anonymous said...

The TBM700 is the Beechcraft Bonanza of the 1960's. "This baby will take us anywhere!". Hey...with the Garmin layout and synthetic vision, who needs a stinkin' instrument approach procedure with those cumbersome minimums? "We'll just go down and take a look..." How many tombstones could that be on? SAD.

Anonymous said...

I'm going with weather, fuel exhaustion on this one...

Anonymous said...

Weather, certainly. Fuel exhaustion, no. He had plenty of fuel, which ignited during the crash sequence and produced a large fire.

Anonymous said...

Aircraft was on an IFR approach. Might have been having icing problems as he dropped below MIA and was given a pilot deviation warning. Probably didn't help with the stress. Visibility was below minimums. I think he had monitoring the weather at EVW and bet that it was improving when he changed his destination back to EVW.

Anonymous said...

Running out of brains, spatial orientation, airspeed and altitude all at the same time.

Anonymous said...

Situational awareness.

Anonymous said...

The weather was not below minimums when the crash occurred. ASOS was reporting 1/2 VIS and VV007. They were on an ILS to a runway with a MALSR. The airplane had the equipment to fly a coupled approach to the runway. I do not believe anyone will ever know what went wrong in the last 2 minutes of the flight.

Anonymous said...

The pilot had over 4,000 hours of flying time over 40 years, and was one of the most careful men I have ever known.

Anonymous said...

4,000 hours in 40 years = 8 hours per month on average/estimated ... low time pilot. Sad :(

Unhappy Cruiser said...

He was certainly not a low time pilot. Your divisional math to make that determination is flawed. With 4,000 hours he has an abundance of real flying experience.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one who notices that a LOT of all the accidents published in the Kathryn's Report are with pilots over 55/60 Yeas of age? Are only older people "rich enough" to fly? Is age an ever increasing risk whilst flying (less sight/hearing/reaction/situational awareness/eye-hand coordination)? Or is it stubbornness to admit one's sharpest days are over and it is time to stop? Especially with complex planes, flown single pilot in detrimental conditions?
You can see this on the roads nearly daily that age kills, not only the person him/herself but taking others with them.
I see around me aviation does not attract young people any more like it used to do.
(I am 65, retired airline cpt, still fly a little GA, however strictly VFR/VMC and also drive a motorbike. But I am constantly monitoring myself, 10 years ago stopping either of both was not in my thinking, but I realise time to stop is approaching for both of them. Better to stop sooner than wait till some policeman pulls You aside for reckless driving...

Anonymous said...

^ Very informative... and insightful commentary.

IMO - Younger pilots who desire to be aircraft owners have the years, a lifetime to devote to building the experimental plane with a young family that has a lot of day-to-day living and household expenses. Whereas the seasoned pilots (with plenty of cash just itching to be spent) tend to go for the complex planes, i.e. good golly gorgeous, has all the bells and whistles aircraft. The later (from what I am reading in accident reports) are lawyers/attorneys, surgeons/doctors, successful business owners/entrepreneurs, high-income wage earners most of their life, etc. Just my two cents worth ;)

Anonymous said...

I too decided to quit flying jets at 61 yrs. voluntarily. Flying for 40 years - but all it takes is one mistake. This pilot should have had a professional pilot with him. Just a personal opinion. Too late now!