Monday, May 21, 2018

Piper PA-34-200T Seneca II, N1101X: Fatal accident occurred May 20, 2018 in Bennington, Vermont

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Portland, Maine
Piper Aircraft; Vero Beach, Florida
Continental Motors; Mobile, Alabama 

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Bennington, VT
Accident Number: ERA18FA148
Date & Time: 05/20/2018, 1423 EDT
Registration: N1101X
Aircraft: PIPER PA34
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 20, 2018, about 1423 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA 34-200T, N1101X, was destroyed during impact with wooded terrain and a postcrash fire on Bald Mountain, while maneuvering near Bennington, Vermont. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the planned flight to Waterbury-Oxford Airport (OXC), Oxford, Connecticut. The flight originated from Burlington International Airport (BTV), Burlington, Vermont, about 1345.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) designated pilot examiner (DPE) at BTV, the pilot had obtained a commercial pilot certificate and certified flight instructor certificate, with a multiengine land rating, on May 17 and May 19, respectively. They then reviewed weather together on May 19 for the pilot's return flight to his home airport, OXC, and the DPE advised the pilot to return on May 21 due to weather. The DPE further stated that he was surprised to learn that the pilot attempted to return home on May 20.

Review of preliminary information from the FAA revealed that the pilot was receiving flight following from Albany Approach Control. The controller advised the pilot of the location of precipitation, along with mountainous terrain nearby. The controller subsequently solicited a pilot report from the pilot regarding cloud bases. The pilot reported that the cloud bases were at 3,000 ft; however, at that time, radar indicated that the accident airplane was at 3,400 ft. The controller then asked the pilot if he was in the clouds and the pilot responded that he was coming out of them. The controller suggested a westbound turn for lower terrain and continued radar coverage. At that time, the accident airplane was flying between 3,200 ft and 4,000 ft mean sea level (msl), but the minimum vectoring altitude for that area was 5,000 ft msl. The airplane briefly turned to a westbound heading, but then turned back to a southeast heading. About 4 miles later, the controller again advised the pilot that if he continued on the present heading that radar coverage would be lost. The pilot asked again what heading he should fly and the controller responded westbound, which the pilot responded "westbound heading 270." Radar and radio contact were then lost during the second westbound turn. The last radar target was recorded at 1423:41, indicating an altitude of 3,500 ft msl and groundspeed of 218 knots, about 1,000 ft from the accident site, which was approximately 2,625 ft msl.

A debris path was observed; beginning with freshly cut tree branches descending about a 45° angle and extending approximately 60 ft on a magnetic heading of 265° to the main wreckage. Several of the branches exhibited cuts with black paint transfer. The main wreckage came to rest upright and was oriented about a 265° magnetic heading, with the empennage canted over the cockpit area. The left propeller separated from the left engine flange and one propeller blade separated from the hub. The blade exhibited s-bending, chordwise scratching, leading edge gouging, tip curling, and was fractured near the blade root. The other left propeller blade was not located and presumed buried beneath the engine. The right propeller separated from the right engine flange; however, both right propeller blades remained attached to the hub. Both blades exhibited s-bending and leading-edge gouging.

The landing gear and flaps were retracted. The cockpit was consumed by fire and no readable instruments were recovered. The emergency locator transmitter was recovered and its switch was found in the off position. The attitude indicator was recovered and its face sustained impact damage. When the attitude indicator was disassembled, its gyro and gyro housing exhibited rotational scoring.

The right wing was partially consumed by fire and exhibited impact damage. The right flap remained attached and the right aileron separated and was located about 2 ft from the right wing. The left wing sustained fire damage, but exhibited less impact damage than the right wing. The left flap and left aileron remained attached to the left wing. The empennage, rudder, and stabilator remained attached. Control continuity was confirmed from the left and right wing aileron bellcranks to the mid-cabin area. Stabilator control continuity was confirmed from the stabilator to the cockpit. Rudder control continuity was confirmed from the rudder to the empennage area. Measurement of the stabilator and rudder trim jackscrews corresponded to an approximate neutral setting, respectively.

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane multiengine land and instrument airplane. He also held a private pilot certificate with rating airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. He held a flight instructor certificate with a rating for airplane multiengine land. His most recent FAA first-class medical certificate was issued on March 5, 2018. At that time, he reported a total flight experience of 227 hours. Review of the pilot's application for a commercial pilot certificate, dated May 17, 2018, revealed a total flight experience of 256 hours; of which, 45 hours were instrument experience; however, the application did not specify, simulated instrument, actual instrument experience, or recent instrument experience.

The six-seat, low-wing, retractable tricycle-gear airplane, was manufactured in 1975. It was powered by a Continental TSIO-360-EB and LTSIO-360-EB (counter rotating), 215-horseppower engines equipped with constant speed, two-blade Hartzell propellers. According to an airplane status sheet completed on May 19, the airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on September 30, 2017. At that time, the airplane had accumulated 7,306 hours.

William H Morse State Airport (DDH), Bennington, Vermont, was located about 5 miles west-southwest of the accident site. The recorded weather at DDH, at 1415, was: wind from 230° at 8 knots; visibility 10 miles; few clouds at 1,700 ft, broken ceiling at 3,600 ft, overcast ceiling at 4,600 ft; temperature 21°C; dew point 17°C, altimeter 29.91 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: PIPER
Registration: N1101X
Model/Series: PA34 200T
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: DDH, 827 ft msl
Observation Time: 1415 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 21°C / 17°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 1700 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots, 230°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 3600 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.91 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Burlington, VT (BTV)
Destination: Oxford, CT (OXC)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 42.923889, -73.139167

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 

WOODFORD, Vt. - Authorities say search crews have found the wreckage of a small plane that crashed into the woods on Bald Mountain in Vermont's Green Mountains, killing the pilot.

The plane that crashed is registered to Persaud Munidat, he's from Waterbury Connecticut. Though we're not certain he was the one flying the plane.

The FAA lost radar contact with a twin-engine piper around 6 p.m. Sunday.

A search started immediately and crews found the wreckage early Monday morning in a wooded area in the town of Woodford.

The victim's body was taken from the scene in Woodford around 1:30 p.m. Monday. State police say he was flying alone.

They say the pilot lost contact with the FAA around 3:30 Sunday afternoon. They believe he was traveling from Vermont to Connecticut.

Search crews began looking for the plane around 7 p.m. Sunday evening. They found the wreckage around 1 a.m. on Monday morning about three miles off Route 9, in that heavily-wooded area.

Police say it was a twin-engine plane that crashed, but there are no details on the specific brand or model of the plane.

Police say the pilot had five to seven years of flying experience and was definitely not a novice.

The FAA and the NTSB are working with state and local officials to determine a cause, why communication was lost and identify the victim.

Story and video ➤

WOODFORD — The pilot of a twin-engine aircraft that crashed into Bald Mountain on Sunday was found dead at the heavily wooded crash site just after 1 a.m. Monday, according to Vermont State Police.

The pilot was alone, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. State police Monday evening identified the pilot and single occupant as Ramsey Sampson Ah-Nee, 31, of Manchester, Conn.

Ah-Nee was described as an experienced pilot with five-plus years of aviation experience. The aircraft was identified as a Piper PA-34 Seneca.

Preliminary information from the FAA indicates that the plane left from Burlington International Airport en route to Waterbury-Oxford Airport in Oxford, Conn.

The crash site is in a heavily wooded area of town, approximately three miles off Route 9, police said.

The plane was not expected at any Vermont airports, said Trini Brassard, assistant director of policy, planning, and intermodal development with the Vermont Agency of Transportation.

Pilots flying into Vermont airports usually call ahead to check on conditions. They aren't required to contact airports if they are merely flying in their area, she said.

State police said they activated search and rescue teams after receiving a report from the Federal Aviation Administration at 5:56 p.m. Sunday that an aircraft had been lost in the vicinity of Bald Mountain. The FAA provided the last known coordinates of the aircraft before it had lost radar confirmation, and the flight plan.

Brassard said that to her knowledge, there were no adverse weather conditions in the area at the time the plane crashed. The National Weather Service reported overcast skies at the time.

Bill Greenwald, manager of Harriman and West Airport in North Adams, Mass., got a call from air traffic control Sunday afternoon. They were looking for the plane, which had disappeared from radar.

They asked him if the plane had landed at Harriman and West, but it had not, he said. Search and rescue teams, consisting of State Police uniformed troopers, State Police Search and Rescue personnel, and Vermont Fish and Wildlife wardens, spread out Sunday night as darkness was falling.

Recovery personnel and state police detectives headed to the area Monday to assess the scene and prepare for the recovery of the pilot's body. State and local officials are working jointly with the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board to support and assist with the investigation and recovery efforts.

State police said they would release more information as it became available. 

Original article ➤

BENNINGTON, VT -- Vermont State Police in Bennington say they have found a missing plane deep in the woods near Bald Mountain.

They say the FAA notified them around 6:00pm Sunday night that a two engine plane went off the radar near Bald Mountain.

State police search and rescue and State Fish & Wildlife crews searched the wooded areas. They found the plane around 1:00am Monday in a heavily wooded area, about three miles of of Route 9 near Woodford. Crews stayed at the crash scene overnight.

Police believe only the pilot was on board. He's been identified as 31-year-old Ramsey Sampson Ah-Nee, of Manchester, Connecticut. They believe the plane was flying from Burlington, VT towards Connecticut. They say the man died in the crash and the body was found.

Crews hiked up the West Ridge Trail early Monday morning with a stretcher to begin the recovery efforts.

Police are unsure what caused the plane to go down.

State Police say they will be investigating with the FAA and NTSB over the next few days.

That area of Bald Mountain will be closed to hikers during the investigation.

Story and video ➤

Search crews have found the wreckage of a small plane that crashed into the woods on Bald Mountain in Vermont's Green Mountains, killing the pilot.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday the pilot was the only person on board the twin-engine propeller plane. He's been identified as 31-year-old Ramsey Sampson Ah-Nee, of Manchester, Connecticut.

State police say they began the search at about 6 p.m. Sunday after the FAA reported it had lost radar contact with the plane. It was flying from Burlington, Vermont, to Oxford, Connecticut, when the crash happened.

Search teams located the wreckage just after 1 a.m. Monday in a heavily wooded area in the town of Woodford in the southwestern corner of the state.

State police say Ah-Nee had more than five years of aviation experience.

Original article ➤

A Manchester, Conn. man was killed in a plane crash in Vermont Sunday, according to Vermont State Police.

According to Vermont State Police, 31-year-old Ramsey Sampson Ah-Nee was the pilot and only occupant in a 1975 Piper PA-34-200T that crashed in Woodford, Vt. Sunday evening.

Police said the Federal Aviation Administration contacted them regarding a lost aircraft in the area of Bald Mountain in Woodford just before 6 p.m. Sunday. The FAA was tracking the plane and lost it on radar.

Search and rescue teams began searching the area of the last known coordinates and located the aircraft in the woods around 1 a.m. The pilot was found deceased on scene, police said.

The plane was scheduled to fly from Burlington, Vt. to Oxford, Conn. Police said Ah-Nee was an experienced pilot with more than five years of experience.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash.

Original article ➤


Anonymous said...

Poor guy...
Looks like he filed IFR to MA, but didn't on the way back

Anonymous said...

Scud running?

Anonymous said...

Weather was clear

Anonymous said...

Not true. If you look at Metars from Bald Mountain area it reported overcast with ceilings coming down from 4500 to 3900 which seemed to track the pilot's descent from his original cruise at 5500. From this evidence, it looks like he had descended beneath the ceiling. Radar terminates at 2:30pm:
Here are the Metars from that day, during his Flight aware reported flight time:
1:54 PM 70.0 °F 62.1 °F 76% 29.89 in 10.0 mi WSW 9.2 mph - N/A Overcast
METAR KDDH 201754Z AUTO 25008KT 10SM BKN015 BKN024 OVC049 21/17 A2990 RMK AO2 SLP122 60012 T02110167 10211 20183 51008
2:15 PM 69.1 °F 62.1 °F 78% 29.91 in 10.0 mi SW 9.2 mph - N/A Overcast
SPECI KDDH 201815Z AUTO 23008KT 10SM FEW017 BKN036 OVC046 21/17 A2991 RMK AO2 T02060167
2:54 PM 69.1 °F 61.0 °F 75% 29.91 in 10.0 mi West 9.2 mph 17.3 mph N/A Overcast
METAR KDDH 201854Z AUTO 28008G15KT 10SM SCT019 BKN026 OVC035 21/16 A2992 RMK AO2 SLP128 T02060161

You can find the link here: Metars:

Anonymous said...

Pilot was running the crap. Too bad, he apparently was properly equipped and qualified