Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Federal Air Marshals accused of more than 200 gun mishaps: Air marshal mishap led to concerns of possible hijacking at Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport (KMSP) control tower


When a passenger found a federal air marshal's loaded service weapon in the bathroom during a trans-Atlantic flight last year, the blunder became headline news. It sparked public outrage, prompted an investigation and led to calls for reform.

But the misplaced gun debacle was hardly an isolated incident, according to documents recently obtained by CNN.

The Transportation Security Administration's Office of Inspection has documented more than 200 cases of air marshals allegedly misusing firearms or misbehaving with guns between roughly 2005 and 2017, according to records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.

The cases ranged from seemingly mundane issues, such as improper storage of weapons, to situations in which air marshals allegedly jeopardized public safety.

In 19 of the cases, air marshals allegedly fired their weapons accidentally. For example, the documents state that in 2017 an agent based in Charlotte, North Carolina, "unintentionally discharged a personally owned firearm resulting in a gunshot wound to his right foot."

A 2013 case described an air marshal mistakenly firing his weapon inside a hotel room and damaging a television in an adjoining room.

More than 70 of the incidents relate to lost, misplaced or stolen weapons. At least three of those cases involved air marshals forgetting their firearms in airplane bathrooms. Two others involved weapons misplaced in airports.

On one occasion, an air marshal allegedly left his gun inside a Bed Bath & Beyond store in Totowa, New Jersey. In another, an investigation was launched after police found a "range bag" containing a gun box and ammunition in a school park.

At least 13 of the cases involved alcohol, including a 2012 case in which an armed air marshal allegedly flew on a plane while drunk and another in 2014 in which an agent was accused of being intoxicated during a firearms training session.

The TSA touts federal air marshals as elite officers who receive extensive firearms training that surpasses the standards within many other law enforcement agencies. In a statement to CNN, Thomas Kelly, a spokesman for the air marshals, said the cases involved less than 1% of its workforce.

"All reports of misconduct are taken seriously and fully investigated. When those investigations validate any misconduct, TSA takes swift disciplinary actions," said Kelly, who added, "we are proud of the highly skilled and trained Federal Air Marshals (FAMs) who keep our skies safe every day."

The documents from TSA's Office of Inspection, which audits and inspects TSA operations, do not stipulate whether the allegations of misconduct were substantiated, or whether the air marshals involved were disciplined. The records also did not identify the employees by name.

TSA has investigated 35 incidents in which air marshals were alleged to have unintentionally or inappropriately discharged or brandished weapons between 2007 and 2017. Of those, 27 incidents were substantiated and resulted in disciplinary action, while eight were cleared with no action taken.

TSA did not share the number and outcome of investigations of other types of alleged misconduct involving firearms described in the documents.

How the cases compare to rates of misconduct with firearms within other law enforcement agencies is unclear because the total number of air marshals is classified. However, former air marshals say any mishap with a firearm is unacceptable because of the unique sensitivity of aviation security.

"When you're in an airport around thousands of people or in an airplane that's essentially a small tube 30,000 feet in the air, you have to be incredibly accurate. You can't make mistakes," said Henry Preston, a former air marshal and training instructor who retired in 2014.

Preston and four other former air marshals reached by CNN said they observed inconsistencies in "recurrent training" during their time with the Federal Air Marshal Service, such as disagreements among instructors on how to enforce marksmanship and safety standards.

Air marshals are required to undergo recurrent training that includes quarterly marksmanship evaluations and annual off-range safety courses, but a 2016 report by the Government Accountability Office found the air marshal service did not have complete and timely data on the extent to which its officers completed that training. Kelly, the air marshal spokesman, said TSA has implemented the GAO's recommendations on how to better evaluate air marshal training.

Three of the cases in the documents obtained by CNN related to misconduct during firearms training.

In 2013, for example, an air marshal instructor "committed egregious safety violations" by allegedly throwing a handful of expired simulation ammunition into an open fire during a training exercise, according to the records. The ammunition exploded and flying debris hit one staff member in the face, the documents state.

Daniel Kowal, a current supervisory air marshal and section chief at the agency's training facility near Atlantic City, New Jersey, said that while any case of misconduct is embarrassing, the Federal Air Marshal Service prides itself on rigorous firearms training and strives for zero errors.

"When we hear incidents like this, we immediately convene a panel to address them and we look at what was the underlying cause, what happened, if and when the training failed, how and why did it fail, and how do we plug that gap," Kowal said.

In addition to recurrent training, all air marshals must first go through a 16-week training course that starts with basic law enforcement techniques, taught in New Mexico, and ends with more advanced weapons-handling and other skills taught at the Atlantic City facility, where CNN observed training in action.

Kowal said air marshals must achieve a minimum marksmanship score of 255 out of 300, which he described as the highest firearms qualification standard in federal law enforcement, and he said air marshals have an average individual score of about 283.

Brian Borek, who represents air marshals as agency president at the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, told CNN some field offices do an excellent job with recurrent training, while disparities exist at others because of limitations on size, resources and personnel. He said that doesn't make them less effective, "just different and limited."

"These challenges are not unique to FAMS agency, however. This exists at all large-scale organizations. This in no way translates to the readiness or skill set of air marshals. They are the best in the world," Borek said.

The incidents of misconduct with firearms adds to a history of controversies that have plagued the Federal Air Marshal Service. Several former air marshals reached by CNN said that in addition to inconsistencies in recurrent training, grueling hours, low morale and even alcoholism affect the mission-readiness of many air marshals.

"There are systemic problems within the culture that affect the men and women doing the job," said Clay Biles, a former air marshal who wrote a book about the agency, titled "Unsecure Skies."

In 2012, a commissioned study conducted by the Division of Sleep Medicine of Brigham and Women's Hospital at Harvard Medical School found that 75% of air marshals flying domestic missions were sleep-deficient. The study stated air marshals suffering from fatigue have increased risk of "self-injury" and "greater incidence of serious errors."

In 2015, CNN reported that 10 federal air marshals had killed themselves since 2002, and representatives of the Air Marshal Association said job stress contributed to those deaths. At least two of the cases in the TSA Office of Inspection documents obtained by CNN involved alleged suicides by air marshals.

The New York Times reported in April that the TSA has had to monitor whether air marshals show up for their flights sober. The TSA said its Office of Inspection makes quality assurance visits to ensure mission readiness.

Some government reports have indicated money spent on some air marshal programs would be more effective in funding other forms of aviation security. Last year, the Department of Homeland Security's inspector general found that the air marshal service's "contribution to aviation transportation security is questionable."

A document obtained by CNN in August showed a TSA proposal to reduce the federal air marshal program that would save the agency nearly $39 million per year.

John Mueller, a political science professor at Ohio State University who has assessed the efficiencies of various forms of aviation security, argues that the costs of air marshals outweigh their benefits. He recommends training and arming more pilots to resist hijackers and adding secondary cockpit barriers.

Referring to air marshals, Mueller said, "They deliver about 5 cents or maybe 10 cents of benefit for every dollar that's spent on them. There are much less expensive security measures, which could replace them and save lots of money."

Story and video: https://www.cnn.com



A mishap that led to a flight crew not being notified of the presence of two federal air marshals on board a United Airlines flight in August prompted concerns of a possible hijacking, according to a newly released report.

Through a public information request, 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS obtained an incident report from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport police, which details the confusion aboard United Airlines flight 3531 from Newark to Minneapolis the night of August 20th.

Two armed federal air marshals were among the 64 passengers on United flight 3531.  However, neither the flight attendants nor the pilot were aware marshals had boarded the plane.

When one of the air marshals made his presence known, it sparked an emergency on board. 

According to the incident report, a flight attendant told investigators she was sitting in the front gallery when a passenger approached and, "demanded to see the passenger manifest."

After telling him no, she said the passenger responded by saying, "didn't they tell you me and my partner (redacted) were on board?"

When the flight attendant asked for his credentials, she says he said "how about this for credentials," and then lifted up his shirt to reveal a handgun.

The flight attendant told police "her heart was racing and that she was scared" after seeing the weapon.

She notified the pilot who said he was, "unaware of any (federal air marshals) aboard the aircraft."

According to the report, the pilot told her, "to not create any suspicion until he could contact dispatch."

An air traffic controller told investigators the information they first received suggested a possible hijacking attempt.

That information, according to the incident report, indicated "a person on board the aircraft with a gun causing a disturbance, not breached the cockpit yet."

The flight attendant told investigators one of the air marshals got out of his seat to check his bag in the overhead compartments while the plane was still taxiing down the runway.  When she instructed him to sit down, the report states the air marshal refused to listen.  The marshal retrieved his Federal Air Marshal badge from his bag and showed it to the flight attendant.

Once the plane landed, Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport police arrested and disarmed two men.

During questioning, the two presented their Federal Air Marshal identification cards, and they were subsequently released from custody.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS reached out to Republic Airlines, who was operating the flight for United Airlines, as well as the Transportation Security Administration. 

A TSA spokesperson issued the following statement:

TSA works closely with aviation partners to identify, correct and prevent disruptive incidents and ensure procedures are followed. Although we cannot comment on the specifics of this particular case, TSA has worked with all involved parties to ensure a similar incident does not happen again.

Story and video:  https://kstp.com

Cessna T206H Turbo Stationair, N164CS: Accident occurred May 15, 2015 at Piggott Municipal Airport (7M7), Clay County, Arkansas

Mid-Continent Aircraft Corporation et al v. Textron Aviation, Inc.

Filed: November 30, 2018 as 6:2018cv01332

Plaintiff: Mid-Continent Aircraft Corporation, National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Defendant: Textron Aviation, Inc.

Cause Of Action: Diversity-Contract Dispute

Court: Tenth Circuit › Kansas District Court

Type: Contract › Recovery/Enforcement

https://dockets.justia.com

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:  
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Little Rock, Arkansas
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania 
Lycoming Engines; Arlington, Texas
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas 

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

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

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

https://registry.faa.gov/N164CS

Location: Piggott, AR
Accident Number: CEN15LA233
Date & Time: 05/15/2015, 0840 CDT
Registration: N164CS
Aircraft: CESSNA T206H
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Powerplant sys/comp malf/fail
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Business

Analysis

**This report was modified on August 28, 2016. Please see the docket for this accident to view the original report.**

The airline transport rated pilot reported that, after an en route stop, he planned to continue his cross-country personal flight. The pilot reported that, during takeoff and as the airplane was between about 20 and 30 ft above the ground, he felt the engine surge, and it then lost power. The airplane was traveling too fast to stop on the remaining runway, and it impacted a ditch at the end of the runway.

Examinations of the airframe and engine revealed that the left magneto was malfunctioning. During subsequent examination of the magneto, a section of a drill bit, which approximated the diameter of a timing pin, was found inside of it. A review of maintenance records revealed that the left magneto had been replaced 15.6 hours before the accident.

A review of engine monitor data revealed that the exhaust gas temperature spiked three times; two of the spikes were attributed to the "before takeoff" magneto checks. The third spike occurred during the takeoff and just before a power reduction. The data are consistent with the left magneto failing during the takeoff. The accident is consistent with maintenance personnel improperly using a drill bit as a timing pin to time the magneto before installing it on the engine. Maintenance personnel likely rotated the engine while the drill bit was still in the magneto, which resulted in a section of the drill bit then breaking off and eventually causing the magneto to fail.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The loss of engine power due to a malfunctioning magneto. Contributing to the accident was maintenance personnel improper use of a drill bit instead of a timing pin during magneto installation, which resulted in a section of the drill bit breaking off and ultimately to the magneto failure. 

Findings

Aircraft
Engine (reciprocating) - Malfunction (Cause)
Engine (reciprocating) - Incorrect service/maintenance (Cause)
Maintenance/inspections - Incorrect service/maintenance (Cause)

Personnel issues
Maintenance - Maintenance personnel (Cause)

Factual Information

On May 15, 2015, about 0840 central daylight time, a Cessna T206H airplane, N164CS, overran the end of the runway, following a rejected takeoff from the Piggott Municipal Airport (7M7), Piggott, Arkansas. The airline transport rated pilot received minor injuries and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by Mid Continent Aircraft Corporation, Hayti, Missouri, under the provisions of the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a cross-country flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time.  The flight was originating at the time of the accident and was en route to the Walnut Ridge Regional Airport (KARG), Walnut Ridge, Arkansas.

The pilot reported that he planned on departing 7M7's runway 18, and the airplane was configured for a no-flap takeoff. About 1,000 feet down the runway, he rotated for takeoff.  When the airplane was about 20-30 feet in the air, the engine "surged", and then lost power.  The airplane settled back on to the runway; however, it was traveling too fast to stop on the remaining runway.  The airplane came to rest in an irrigation ditch near the runway.   The airplane was equipped with air bags, and the pilot's airbag deployed during the accident.

The initial examination of the airplane revealed substantial damage to the left wing and fuselage.  The airplane was recovered from the ditch; however, the airplane received extensive damage during the recovery, including separation of the empennage from the fuselage.

The airplane was a 2014 Cessna turbo Stationair (T206H), powered by a Lycoming TIO-540-AJ1A, six-cylinder reciprocating engine, rated at 310 hp.  The airplane's "hobbs" meter read 113.6 total flight hours.  The airplane was equipped with a Garmin G1000 avionics suite; the engine monitoring data was downloaded from the unit. A review of maintenance records revealed the most recent manufacturer's inspection was completed on March 30, 2015 at a hobbs time of 96.1 flight hours.

The NTSB Investigator in Charge (IIC), a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector, and technical representatives from the airframe and engine manufacturers, examined the airplane at a salvage yard facility located in Clinton, Arkansas.

A visual examination of the engine did not reveal any anomalies, so an engine run was planned; however, damage to the airplane's engine mount and propeller limited the test run to low power settings.  During the test run, a malfunctioning left magneto was discovered.  A review of the engine's maintenance records revealed the left magneto had been replaced at a hobb's time of 98.0 hours.

The engine was separated from the airframe and shipped to Lycoming's engine facility located in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The engine's left magneto was replaced with a factory test unit and the engine was prepped, and placed in an engine test cell. The NTSB IIC and technical representatives then conducted an engine test run.  No abnormalities were noted during the engine test run.

The engine's fuel injection servo unit was removed and sent to Precision Airmotive, LLC, for examination.  The examination was conducted under the supervision of the NTSB, with technical representatives from the airframe and fuel servo manufacturers.  The fuel servo was bench tested; the unit tested satisfactory, with no performance abnormalities noted.   Disassembly of the unit revealed two separation areas on the fuel diaphragm, which failed to show up during the bench test.

The original left magneto and the replacement magneto, which was on the engine at the time of the accident, were shipped to Champion Aerospace facility in Liberty, South Carolina. The NTSB IIC and technical representatives from Textron Aviation (Cessna) and Slick Ignition systems examined the magnetos. The original magneto was placed on a bench test machine; the magneto appeared operational with no abnormalities noted.  The magneto on the engine at the time of the accident was then bench tested.  The magneto initially displayed normal ignition spark; however, as the rpm increased, the spark became erratic and failed at times to produce spark on all (six) terminals.

The failed magneto was then disassembled; small bits of plastic like material was found inside the magneto consistent with the magneto's rotor. The rotor arm attached to the plastic rotor was out of position and could turn independent of the rotor. The contact points inside the magneto cap showed abnormal wear. Parts from inside the magneto were laid out on a table. A section of a drill bit, about 3/8 inch long, was among the pieces found inside the magneto.

During maintenance and prior to installation of the magneto to the engine, a timing pin (Slick T-118 Magneto Locking pin) is used to time the magneto.  The section of drill bit approximated the diameter of the timing pin.

The accident data from the engine monitor was reviewed.  Three areas of EGT (exhaust gas temperature) spikes were noted.  Two spikes before the takeoff roll were attributed to the pilot conducting the 'before takeoff' magneto checks.  The third spike happened during the takeoff and just before a reduction in engine rpms.  The data is consistent with the left magneto failing during the takeoff.

History of Flight

Prior to flight
Powerplant sys/comp malf/fail (Defining event)

Takeoff
Loss of engine power (partial)

Takeoff-rejected takeoff
Runway excursion
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Airline Transport
Age: 68
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 01/07/2015
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  23020 hours (Total, all aircraft), 800 hours (Total, this make and model), 20650 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 50 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 20 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N164CS
Model/Series: T206H
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture:
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: T20609132
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats:
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/30/2015, AAIP
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3605 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 18 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 113.6 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: TIO-540-AJ1A
Registered Owner: Mid Continent Aircraft Corp
Rated Power: 310 hp
Operator: Mid Continent Aircraft Corp
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: K4M9
Distance from Accident Site: 23 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0735 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 270°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Unknown
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Unknown
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 3 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 140°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.08 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / 18°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Precipitation
Departure Point: Piggott, AR (7M7)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Walnut Ridge, AR (KARG)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0740 CDT
Type of Airspace: 

Airport Information

Airport: Piggott Municipal (7M7)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 275 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 18
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2550 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: None 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 36.374722, -90.166111

Are you safer if you fly on a private jet than a commercial airplane?


No airport security lines. No time-consuming transfers at hubs. And no unruly kids kicking your seat back.

Business jet travel is certainly more efficient and glamorous than flying commercial. But is it as safe?

The accident rate for corporate aviation is hard to determine, but studies show a higher accident risk in taking a business jet over a commercial airliner, though both are considered extremely safe.

In 2015, the last year for which the National Transportation Safety Board has figures, the accident rate was 11.85 per million miles flown in business-size planes compared with one per million miles for regularly scheduled commercial airline flights.

Last year, there were five fatal business-jet accidents in the U.S. and four in other countries, according to Aviation International News. In contrast, there were no fatalities on commercial airlines in what was the safest year ever for commercial aviation.

The Courier Journal examined the safety of business jet travel in the wake of Friday’s crash that killed architect Wayne Estopinal and two others when the Cessna 525A owned by Estopinal’s company crashed shortly after takeoff from Clark Regional Airport.

Safety records show the same model of light jet has been involved in a dozen accidents since 2004, but only one involved fatalities. In that accident, four people were killed in Santa Monica, California, on Sept. 29, 2013. The NTSB determined the pilot failed to decrease speed as he was landing. The plane veered off the runway, crashed into a hangar and bust into flames. 

The NTSB said a large dog was on board, along with other unrestrained animals that had the potential to create a distraction during the landing roll.

Only one of the accidents involved a mechanical problem — a brake failure on landing attributed to fatigue cracks in old hydraulic lines. All others were attributed to pilot error.

Estopinal's company plane was built in 2009. A former TEG pilot said the company bought the plane new, and it was configured to seat seven passengers.

The Cessna Citation 525 has been a workhorse of the business aviation industry, with about 2,000 sold between first delivery in 1993 and June 2017, according to Cessna.

Among all models in the 525 series, there have been 49 accidents — 12 with fatalities, including the one in Santa Monica, according to the NTSB's aviation database. Thirty-four people died in total. Most of the fatal accidents involved the original model, which had a significantly smaller wingspan and fuselage than TEG's late-model 525A.

None of the accidents was attributed to mechanical problems.

In one crash, the pilot deliberately flew into his own house in Utah after his arrest on a domestic violence charge. He died, but his wife and son — his intended victims — escaped the burning house. 

In one of the accidents, a Cessna Citation crashed into a smaller plane on the runway, killing passengers of the other plane. 

In another, an unlocked door to the nose baggage compartment came open during takeoff and the pilot stalled and crashed while trying to return to the airport to close it. The NTSB noted several other instances where Citation doors came open but pilots were able to safely return to the airport.

In three accidents, pilots became disoriented and crashed during instrument flight.

In the most recent accident, on April 16, a private pilot took off on a personal flight from Richmond, Virginia, and crashed 19 minutes later. The NTSB has yet to determine a probable cause.

JetAdvisors.com, an aircraft broker in Bedford, Massachusetts, describes the Cessna 525A as “extremely easy to fly'' and says it can be flown with one pilot, making it more cost-effective than planes requiring two.

Estopinal, the founder of Louisville City FC, was a licensed private pilot who flew his own small plane but wasn't rated to fly his company's jet. Estopinal's company, TEG Architects, had two pilots on staff.

TEG pilot Andrew Davis, 32, died in the crash. The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday that his record was free of accidents, incidents or enforcement actions. Also killed was passenger Sandra Holland Johnson, 54, a TEG vice president based in Shreveport, Louisiana.

The cause of the crash shortly after takeoff from the Clark Regional Airport remains under investigation. Workers Monday were hauling parts of the demolished plane from a densely wooded area west of unincorporated Memphis, about 16 miles north of Louisville.

Because business jets can be registered in multiple categories — some as general aviation aircraft, while others are listed as aircraft for hire — accident rate comparisons are difficult.

In 2014, Time magazine reported that private jet travel is slightly riskier than going commercial, but Bloomberg reported the next year that since 2000 there had been five times more fatal accidents in the U.S. involving private and chartered corporate planes than commercial airliners.

Based on a review of hundreds of investigative reports and news accounts, Bloomberg said pilot error was cited in 88 percent of business aircraft crashes. The news outlet said investigations found that pilots of private and chartered corporate planes worked long days, skipped safety checks and overlooked hazards such as icing on the wings. It also said business jets and corporate pilots were not regulated as closely as those in the commercial sector.

Dan Hubbard, a spokesman for the National Business Aviation Association, which promotes the business jet industry, said its data, which is several years old, show the accident rate and fatality rate for corporate-designated flights with two pilots equals that of commercial airlines. 

He said the Bloomberg report included all business flights, including those using single-engine planes that are more dangerous.

In one of the most highly publicized business jet crashes, PGA golfer Payne Stewart and six others died in 1999 when a chartered Learjet 35 crashed into a field near Aberdeen, South Dakota. The NTSB said the two pilots lost consciousness because of a loss of cabin pressure, though the cause of the failure was never determined. The plane flew for four hours after air traffic controllers lost contact with the crew and eventually crashed after running out of fuel.

Business executives who have perished in private jet crashes include:

– Lewis Katz, a former owner of the NBA’s New Jersey Nets and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, and six others died in 2014 when his Gulfstream IV exploded on a runway near Boston. The NTSB cited pilot error, finding that the pilots mistakenly kept locks on the aircraft, designed to keep it parked, engaged when they tried to take off. The plane crashed into a ravine and burst into flames. The agency found that accident would have been averted if the crew had performed preflight checks.

– Christophe de Margerie, CEO of French oil giant Total, and three crew members were killed in 2014 when his private jet hit a snowplow while taking off in Moscow. News reports said the snowplow driver was drunk. He and a duty engineer later pleaded guilty to causing the deaths.

– Dr. Steven Roth, a heart surgeon, and four of his staff were killed in 2013 in a crash on landing in Thomson, Georgia, that the NTSB blamed in part on the pilot's fatigue and unfamiliarity with the Beechcraft 390 premier. The pilot and co-pilot both survived. The NTSB said the pilot, who crashed into a pole near the runway, had tried to sleep the night before in Nashville, but cellphone records showed his longest break between calls and texts was 65 minutes.

"As a result, five people died who did not have to," said NTSB acting chairman Christopher Hart. "Just as pilots should not take off without enough fuel, they should not operate an aircraft without enough rest."

– In 2001, a private jet crashed at night while trying to land in Aspen, Colorado, killing all 18 on board. The Gulfstream III jet, operated by Avjet Corp., had been chartered to take 15 people from Southern California to a birthday party in the ski resort. The NTSB noted that several other pilots had diverted because of stormy conditions but the man who chartered the plane grew "irate" at the idea and pressured the pilot to land, despite limited visibility and a nighttime curfew.

Original article ➤  https://www.courier-journal.com

Cessna 172N Skyhawk, N4855G: Accident occurred July 28, 2018 at Weltzien Skypark Airport (15G), Medina County, Ohio

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Cleveland, Ohio

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

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

http://registry.faa.gov/N4855G

Location: Wadsworth, OH
Accident Number: GAA18CA452
Date & Time: 07/28/2018, 1330 EDT
Registration: N4855G
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot reported during a telephone interview that, while landing in variable wind conditions, his approach speed was fast, and that during the landing roll, the wind pushed the airplane off the runway to the right. He added that he did not apply full braking action.

The pilot reiterated on the NTSB Form 6120.1 that, during the landing roll, a strong crosswind gust pushed the airplane off the right side of the runway into bushes. He described the wind as variable and gusting but did not report the wind speed.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The automated weather observation station located about 10 miles south-southwest from the airport reported that, about 34 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 290° at 8 knots. The same automated station reported that, about 26 minutes after the accident, the wind was from 310° at 5 knots. The airplane landed on runway 3.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 82, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Unknown
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 10/30/2015
Occupational Pilot:
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: (Estimated)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N4855G
Model/Series: 172 N
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1979
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17273402
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/01/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2550 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1554.6 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT:  C91  installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-320 SERIES
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 180 hp
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: KBJJ, 1137 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1756 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 203°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 4700 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 5 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 310°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 22°C / 13°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Wadsworth, OH (15G)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Port Clinton, OH (PCW)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0930 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: WELTZIEN SKYPARK (15G)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 1210 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 03
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2410 ft / 37 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  41.027222, -81.798889 (est)

Van’s RV-9A, N899RV: Accident occurred July 28, 2018 at Park Township Airport (KHLM), Holland, Michigan

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Grand Rapids, Michigan

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

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

http://registry.faa.gov/N899RV


Location: Holland, MI
Accident Number: GAA18CA466
Date & Time: 07/28/2018, 0950 EDT
Registration: N899RV
Aircraft: VANS RV9
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot reported that, during landing, the airplane bounced. He initiated a go around, the airplane veered left, touched back down on the ground, and impacted trees.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 46, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 5-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 11/28/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 05/04/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 220.8 hours (Total, all aircraft), 35.5 hours (Total, this make and model), 168 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 29.7 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 8.1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)


Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: VANS
Registration: N899RV
Model/Series: RV9 A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2006
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 90537
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/05/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1750 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 513 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series:
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 160 hp
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: KBIV, 689 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 4 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1353 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 136°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Calm /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction:
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.13 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 21°C / 15°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Oshkosh, WI (OSH)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: Holland, MI (HLM)
Type of Clearance: VFR; VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 0830 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: PARK TOWNSHIP (HLM)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 603 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 05
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2999 ft / 59 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Go Around; Straight-in

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  42.796667, -86.162500 (est)

Cessna 525B Citation CJ3, N5MQ: Incident occurred December 03, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Atlanta, Georgia

Went off the runway into the grass.

Incomm Leasing LLC

https://registry.faa.gov/N5MQ

Date: 03-DEC-18
Time: 13:48:00Z
Regis#: N5MQ
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 525B
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: ATLANTA
State: GEORGIA

Beechcraft 35-A33 Debonair, N425T: Incident occurred December 02, 2018 at Hammond Northshore Regional Airport (KHDC), Louisiana and Incident occurred November 14, 2012 in Rocklin, Placer County, California

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Baton Rouge, Louisiana

December 02, 2018: Hit MALSR light bars on runway.

https://registry.faa.gov/N425T

Date: 02-DEC-18
Time: 00:20:00Z
Regis#: N425T
Aircraft Make: BEECH
Aircraft Model: 35 A33
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: HAMMOND
State: LOUISIANA

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Sacramento, California

November 14, 2012:  Aircraft force landed on a highway median.

Date: 14-NOV-12
Time:  1835
Regis#: N425T
Aircraft Make: BEECH
Aircraft Model: 35 A33
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: NONE
Activity: Unknown
Flight Phase: Landing
Operation: Other
City:  ROCKVILLE
State:  CALIFORNIA 

 
November 14, 2012

November 14, 2012

November 14, 2012

November 14, 2012

 Beech 35-A33 (N425T) rests on the grassy median of Highway 65 near Blue Oaks after the pilot landed there on November 14, 2012.