Monday, April 16, 2018

Quad City Challenger II, N635DT: Fatal accident occurred April 15, 2018 in Friona, Parmer County, Texas

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; Lubbock, Texas

Aircraft crashed in a field under unknown circumstances.

Date: 16-APR-18
Time: 01:00:00Z
Regis#: N635DT
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
Operation: 91
State: TEXAS

PARMER COUNTY, TX (KFDA) -  Two men are dead after the Quad City Challenger II they were flying in crashed in to a field in Parmer County.

The Quad City Challenger II took off from a grass airstrip on a private piece of property roughly 5 miles east of Friona.

Parmer County Sheriff Randy Geries says reports indicate the Quad City Challenger II may not have been in the air too long before it crashed.

"We believe they hadn't been flying long," said Sheriff Geries. "It was just a little bit before dusk [when they took off.] We were told they hadn't been gone that long, but then they became overdue, and after it got dark they began to worry about them.

The plane came to rest in the middle of a wheat field.

The FAA was out investigating in the early morning, tearing through every piece of this wreckage trying to piece together exactly what happened.

The top of the plane had to be weighed down by an engine and a big tire due to the heavy winds.

Reports say the plane was last spotted around 8:30 p.m.

Two hours later, a 911 call was placed, reporting the aircraft and its two passengers had gone missing.

Multiple agencies aided in the search including: the Bovina Fire Dept., the Friona Fire Dept., Friona Police Dept., Parmer County Sheriffs Office and Department of Public Safety.

"We had local fire departments, from both Bovina and Friona come in [to] assist us with the ground search," said Sheriff Geries. "We involved the Department of Public Safety, they sent officers and we also had their aircraft out of Amarillo come and help us."

Sheriff Geries credits advanced technology on a DPS helicopter for helping to locate the downed plane around 1:00 a.m.

The FAA and NTSB are still investigating what caused the crash, but both men were reportedly experienced pilots.

Sheriff Geries called the incident a tragedy.

"We have a lot of people that have small aircraft around in the area," said Geries. "We don't have this happen, its a tragedy when it does happen. We don't know what happened, but we have a couple young men that lost their lives. Our hearts go out to the family. Now it's just trying to figure out what happened so we can educate ourselves and move forward for the family." 

The two passengers onboard the plane have been identified as 25 year-old Clayton Sides from Dimmitt, and 25 year-old Thomas Hefner from Bovina.

A family friend said both men were outstanding citizens and will be missed dearly.

Original article can be found here ➤

PARMER COUNTY, TX (KFDA) - Two people have died after a plane crashed in Parmer County Sunday evening.

Department of Public Safety officials say an aircraft failed to return after taking off from the owner's home. 

The plane was last seen around 8:30 p.m. in flight west of Friona.

Around 10:43 p.m., 911 was called to report the plane missing. 

A ground search was conducted, and a Department of Public Safety aircraft located the plane around eight miles west of Friona.

Both occupants of the aircraft were found dead.

They have been identified as 25-year-old Clayton Sides of Dimmitt and 25-year-old Thomas Jacob Hefner of Bovina.

At this time, Department of Public Safety troopers are securing the scene until Federal Aviation Administration arrive.  The investigation into the crash is ongoing.

Original article can be found here ➤

PARMER COUNTY, TX - Two people are dead following a plane crash in Parmer County Sunday evening. 

According to the Federal Aviation Administration and the Texas Department of Public Safety, the plane crashed in a cornfield approximately 8 miles west of Friona. 

The Federal Aviation Administration said the Quad City Challenger II took off from a private airstrip around 8:00 p.m.

The Department of Public Safety said the plane was reported missing around 10:30 p.m.

Authorities located the downed aircraft around 1:00 a.m. Monday.

The Department of Public Safety identified the victims as Clayton Sides, 25, of Dimmitt and Thomas Jacob Hefner, 25 of Bovina.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the victims were reported to be a flight instructor and a student. 

Federal Aviation Administration investigators are on their way to the crash site and the National Transportation Safety Board has been notified. 

The National Transportation Safety Board will be in charge of the investigation.

Original article ➤

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