Saturday, February 23, 2019

Visual Flight Rules encounter with Instrument Meteorological Conditions: Beechcraft D55 Baron, N533Q; fatal accident occurred February 21, 2019 in Stallion Springs, Kern County, California

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board 

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Van Nuys, California
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Continental Motors Group; Mobile, Alabama

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Stallion Springs, California 
Accident Number: WPR19FA086
Date & Time: February 21, 2019, 16:45 Local 
Registration: N533Q
Aircraft: Beech D55
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: VFR encounter with IMC
Injuries: 3 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation


The pilot departed on a visual flight rules cross-country flight with two passengers. There were no communications with air traffic control, and the flight did not arrive at its intended destination. The wreckage was located the next day on rising, mountainous snow-capped terrain at an elevation of about 6,700 ft mean sea level.

Examination of the wreckage revealed that the airplane initially impacted trees and left a distribution path of about 392 ft, which is consistent with controlled flight into terrain. Examination of both engines at the accident site revealed no evidence of a mechanical anomaly that would have precluded normal operation. The propellers from both engines exhibited impact damage with rotational scoring on the cambered surfaces and torsional bending of the blades, and damaged trees around the wreckage exhibited 45° cut sections that appeared to be from the propeller blades, consistent with the engines producing power at the time of impact.

There were no records of the pilot obtaining a weather briefing or filing a flight plan before departure; it is unknown if the pilot reviewed other weather sources before the flight. Along the route of flight, the combination of a low-pressure system at the surface and at 500-hPa provided the support for upward vertical motion and the development of rain showers and thunderstorms, with snow showers in higher elevations. Terrain above about 4,600 ft in the vicinity of the accident site was likely obscured in clouds with light freezing conditions and snow about the time of the accident. The available weather reports, forecasts, and advisories depicted the conditions and identified instrument flight rules and icing conditions along the route of flight. Had the pilot obtained a weather briefing for his planned route of flight, he would have been aware of the weather hazards, and alternate routing may have allowed for safe operations in visual conditions.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot’s continued visual flight into instrument meteorological conditions associated with mountain obscuration conditions, which resulted in controlled flight into rising terrain. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s failure to obtain a weather briefing.


Personnel issues Weather planning - Pilot
Personnel issues Decision making/judgment - Pilot
Environmental issues Mountainous/hilly terrain - Contributed to outcome
Environmental issues Obscuration - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Enroute-cruise VFR encounter with IMC (Defining event)
Enroute-cruise Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT)

On February 21, 2019, about 1645 Pacific standard time, a Beech D55 airplane, N533Q, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Stallion Springs, California. The pilot and two passengers were fatally injured. The airplane was being operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot’s son reported that a family friend had asked the pilot to fly two passengers to see a client but that the flight was not for compensation or hire. The airplane departed San Luis County Regional Airport (SBP), San Luis Obispo, California, about 1600, on the cross-country flight destined for Whiteman Airport (WHP), Los Angeles, California, but did not arrive. There was no contact with air traffic control. About 2116, an alert notice was issued for the missing accident airplane. On February 22, 2019, the wreckage was located by search and rescue crews on snow-covered rising terrain at an elevation of 6,700 ft mean sea level (msl).

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Flight instructor; Private
Age: 74,Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Multi-engine land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane 
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane multi-engine; Airplane single-engine; Instrument airplane
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: BasicMed With waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: May 13, 2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 4012 hours (Total, all aircraft), 100 hours (Total, this make and model), 38 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft)

The pilot, age 74, held a private pilot certificate for airplane multi-engine land with a restriction of visual flight rules only. He also held a commercial certificate for airplane single-engine land and instrument rating. He held an airframe and powerplant certificate and was an authorized inspector. He was issued a third-class airman medical certificate on November 24, 2014, with the following limitation: Must have available glasses for near vision. The pilot’s medical expired for all classes on November 30, 2016. According to the FAA, he completed the BasicMed Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) on May 8, 2017 and the Basic Med Course on May 13, 2017.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech
Registration: N533Q
Model/Series: D55
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1968
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: TE-616
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle 
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: April 4, 2018
Annual Certified Max Gross Wt.: 5300 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 2 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 4965.7 Hrs as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: C91A installed, activated, aided in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-520-C
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 285 Horsepower
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Unknown 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KTSP,4001 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 9 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 16:55 Local
Direction from Accident Site: 56°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 600 ft AGL
Visibility: 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 1900 ft AGL
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 8 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  /
Wind Direction: 310° 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 29.62 inches Hg 
Temperature/Dew Point: -2°C / -3°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: San Luis Obispo, CA (SBP)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Los Angeles, CA (WHP) 
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 16:00 Local 
Type of Airspace: Class G

The National Weather Service (NWS) Surface Analysis Chart for 1600 depicted a low-pressure system associated with an occluded front over Utah, extending south into Arizona and back to the southwest into New Mexico as a cold front. Another low-pressure system was located over southern California, with a trough of low pressure extending between the two lows. The accident site was immediately north of the low in California and behind the occluded front. Station models depicted variable winds and variable cloud cover, with several stations reporting rain and snow, especially over Arizona and Nevada.

The NWS 500-hPa Constant Pressure Chart for 1600 depicted an upper-level low-pressure system over central California with a long wave trough extending southwest. The accident site was near the base of the upper-level low. Troughs are typically areas of favorable upward vertical motion and support the development of clouds and precipitation.

The closest weather reporting station to the accident site was Tehachapi Municipal Airport (TSP), Tehachapi, California, located about 9 miles northeast at an elevation of 4,001 ft. At 1635, the airport’s automated weather observation system reported wind from 310º at 6 kts, visibility 10 miles or more in light rain, ceiling broken at 600 ft above ground level (agl), broken at 1,200 ft, overcast at 2,900 ft, temperature -2°C, dew point -2°C, and altimeter 29.61 inches of Mercury. Before this period, a band of heavy snow and unknown precipitation impacted the station, with the precipitation turning over to rain with below-freezing surface temperatures during the period before changing back to snow.

The next closest weather reporting location was the NWS Sandburg (SDB) automated surface observing system near the crest of Bald Mountain, located about 19 miles south of the accident site at an elevation of 4,521 ft. At 1653, SDB reported wind from 350º at 13 kts gusting to 24 kts, visibility 10 miles or more, ceiling broken at 500 ft agl, broken at 1,200 ft, temperature -2ºC, dew point -3ºC, and altimeter 29.59 inches of Mercury. Remarks included snow began at 1629 and ended at 1630, ceiling 200 ft, variable 800 ft, hourly precipitation a trace, temperature -2.2ºC, and dew point -3.3ºC.

The graphic forecast for aviation (GFA) forecast expected areas of restricted visibility in rain and snow showers in the vicinity of the accident site, with overcast clouds with bases near 5,000 ft msl and tops layered to 23,000 ft. The GFA also depicted the G-AIRMETs for mountain obscuration and moderate icing conditions current over the accident site.

A review of the observations indicated that a thunderstorm was reported at 1656 and ended at 1705.

A search of the FAA Automated Flight Service Station (AFSS) provider Leidos indicated that they had no requests from the pilot for a weather briefing, or to file a flight plan, and no other contact with him on February 21, 2019. A similar search with ForeFlight also came up with no contact for any weather briefing information. It is therefore unknown what the pilot reviewed to familiarize himself with regards to the reported and forecast weather conditions prior to flight. It is also unknown as to the pilot’s intended flight route.

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 3 Fatal 
Latitude, Longitude: 35.0475,-118.59694(est)

Examination of the accident site revealed that the airplane impacted rising, mountainous snow-capped terrain that gradually sloped upward in a northwest-to-southeast direction. The wreckage debris field was orientated on a magnetic heading of 125° and at an elevation of 6,700 ft msl. All major structural components of the airplane were located at the accident site. The wreckage debris path was 392 ft from the initial impact point (IIP) to the last piece of wreckage. The IIP was identified as a severed treetop about 30 ft high and about 143 ft northwest from the first piece of identifiable wreckage. The latter was about 6 inches of the outboard section of the left horizontal stabilator. The last piece of identified wreckage was the forward section of the fuselage.

Flight control cable continuity could not be established due to fragmentation of the wreckage. All control cable separations observed were tension overload type separations. Sections of both ailerons, both elevators, the top of the rudder, and the flaps were observed in the wreckage path. The fuselage was observed in two major sections. Both wings were highly fragmented.

Both engines were separated from the wings and displayed extensive impact damage. Examination of both engines at the accident site revealed no evidence of a mechanical anomaly that would have precluded normal operation. Both propeller assemblies were separated from the engines. Both propellers exhibited impact damage with rotational scoring on the cambered surfaces and torsional bending of the blades. Damaged trees exhibited 45° cut sections consistent with cuts from propeller blades”.

The wreckage was not recovered from the accident site.

Medical and Pathological Information

An autopsy was performed on the pilot by the coroner’s office in Bakersfield, California. The cause of death was attributed to “blunt injuries instantaneously or within just a few seconds.”

Toxicology testing by the FAA Forensic Sciences Laboratory revealed Tamsulosin and valsartan were detected in liver and muscle tissue. Tamsulosin (Flomax®) is used in the symptomatic treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Valsartan is used to treat high blood pressure, congestive heart failure (CHF), and post-myocardial infarction (MI).


Location: Stallion Springs, CA
Accident Number: WPR19FA086
Date & Time: 02/21/2019, 1645 PST
Registration: N533Q
Aircraft: Beech 55
Injuries: 3 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Business 

On February 21, 2019, about 1645 Pacific standard time, a Beech D55 multi-engine airplane, N533Q, impacted terrain near Stallion Springs, California. The private pilot and both passengers were fatally injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to a private individual and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, cross country flight. Visual meteorological conditions were reported near the accident site about the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from San Luis County Regional Airport (SBP), San Luis Obispo, California, at 1600 and was destined for Whiteman Airport (WHP), Los Angeles, California.

Examination of the accident site revealed that the airplane impacted rising mountainous snow capped terrain on an approximate heading of 125° magnetic, at an elevation of about 6,700 ft mean sea level (MSL). All major structural components of the airplane were located at the accident site. The wreckage debris path was about 392 ft from the initial impact point (IIP) to the last piece of identified wreckage. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech
Registration: N533Q
Model/Series: 55 D55
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: KTSP, 4001 ft msl
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:  9 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling:
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: San Luis Obispo, CA (SBP)
Destination: Los Angeles, CA (WHP) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 3 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 35.047500, -118.596944 (est)

Around 10:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 21, KCSO was notified of an overdue plane that was traveling from San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles. The overdue aircraft was a 
Beechcraft D55 Baron three passengers.

KCSO patrol began a search in the area of Interstate 5 and Highway 166, with the search leading them to the Tehachapi Mountains.

The original search was led by patrol units and Search and Rescue assisted.

KCSO coordinated with the Civil Air Patrol, Kern County Fire Department and the California Office of Emergency Services.

Efforts continued until 3:30 a.m.

The area is mountainous and had two to three feet of snow during the time of the search.

KCSO requested Civil Air Patrol to fly over the mountains and kept Search and Rescue team members on standby.

Patrol deputies began the search on Friday morning with Search and Rescue and Kern County Fire, who located the wreckage at about 10:30 a.m. Much of the wreckage was buried under about 5 feet of snow.

One passenger was confirmed deceased initially, while the other two were not immediately located. Search and Rescue Sergeant Steven Williams confirmed later that two other bodies had been located under several feet of snow and downed trees.

The passengers killed were Felipe Iniguez Plascencia, 53, of Whittier; Ruben Piranian, 74, of Granada Hills; and Marina Villavicencio, 38, of Yorba Linda.

Felipe Plascencia
December 13, 1965 ~ February 21, 2019 

Prominent attorney Felipe Plascencia perished in an airplane crash in the Tehachapi Mountains on Thursday night at the age of 53. The La Habra Heights resident was returning from a court appearance in San Luis Obispo when the Beechcraft D55 Baron he was in went down. In addition to Plascencia, and the pilot, the crash killed attorney Marina Villavicencio aged 38. Plascencia was an extremely well respected trial attorney and political activist. Plascencia was nationally regarded as as an expert in driving under the influence cases and he was frequently asked to lecture on the subject to both the legal community and members of law enforcement.

Plascencia was born in Tepatitlan, Jalisco, Mexico in 1965. He immigrated to Santa Ana, California at the age of seven with his parents Rafael Plascencia, Maria Guadalupe Plascencia and three brothers and a sister. Plascencia attended Los Amigos High School in Fountain Valley and while at Los Amigos he distinguished himself academically. He was also a top varsity athlete on the soccer, cross country and track team. Plascencia did so while working a number of jobs throughout his childhood to contribute to his family’s household.

Plascencia matriculated to California State University Fullerton where he obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. While at CSUF, Plascencia actively participated in student organizations to advocate on behalf of Latino and other minority students. It was in college that Plascencia met and married his sweetheart, Yolanda Brito Plascencia who attended Santa Ana College.

In 1990 Loyola Law School admitted Plascencia and he continued to be active in politics focusing on issues that impacted the working poor and underserved immigrant communities. Upon graduation from Loyola Law School in 1993, Plascencia remained a loyal alumnus and regularly donated his time and money to the institution.

Prior to opening his own practice, Plascencia served as a Los Angeles County Deputy Public Defender, and a Deputy City Attorney for the City of Compton. A graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyer’s College, Plascencia regularly lectured on trial techniques and often mentored law students and new lawyers. A life long student of psychology and human nature, Plascencia encouraged lawyers to empathize with all those involved in the legal process and role play the perspectives of all participants in a case before trial. Plascencia was known for his charming, down to earth style in front of a jury and his relentless advocacy on behalf of his clients. In 2009 he was recognized as the Attorney of the Year by the Mexican American Bar Association, and he was introduced by then Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley. 

Plascencia remained active in California politics and was President of the Mexican American Bar Association Political Action Committee from 2005 to present. During his presidency Plascencia raised the visibility of MABAPAC in Los Angeles county and Sacramento. Plascencia, a lifelong Democrat, encouraged MABAPAC to endorse the candidates they felt would best serve the community regardless of political affiliation. The annual MABAPAC mixer, held at Plascencia’s residence in La Habra Heights, hosted prominent members of the legal and political communities.  Plascencia is survived by his wife Yolanda, and his daughters Magali and Alena. Additionally he is survived by his father Rafael and his siblings Ramon, Rosa, Moises, Rafael, Joseph, and Erika.

Marina Isabelle Villavicencio
January 9th, 1981 – February 21st, 2019 

Marina Isabelle Villavicencio was the first-born child of Isauro and Antonia Villavicencio. She was born on January 9, 1981 in Santa Monica, California. She was a beautiful baby girl and a joy to her parents. Tragically, Marina was taken on the evening of February 21, 2019. Marina was only 38 years old and at the prime of her life. Marina attended St. Catherine of Laboure Catholic School in Redondo Beach, California. She went on to attend and graduate from El Dorado High School in Placentia, CA. After high school she attended Cal State University, Fullerton, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History. Marina was confident, self-assured and courageous in her next challenge. Marina attended Western State College of Law where she graduated with her Law Degree on December 2, 2013. 

In 2017, Marina founded the Villavicencio Law Firm. Marina was a member of the Mexican American Bar Association – Political Action Committee (MABA-PAC), where she served as a Board Member. She was a dedicated warrior in the battlefield of social justice and promoted equality for all. Despite her busy schedule, Marina always made time to serve her local community. She was a Professor for Paralegal Studies at Fullerton College, and a mentor to future law students. In addition, she also coached girls soccer, Marina was very family oriented and was involved in all family activities. She was admired, respected and often loved by her peers, colleagues and almost everyone she came to know. Marina was known for her loyalty and love of family, friends, clients and anyone in need of a friend or just a helping hand. 

Marina had a life-long passion for soccer and loved playing the sport throughout her life. Marina had an incredible smile that would light up a room. She had a way of captivating people with her smile, charm, and witty sense of humor. Marina always brought comfort, joy, smiles, and laughter to those around her. Marina is survived by her parents Isauro, Antonia, her brother Richard and sisters Bianca and Evelyn.

Three people killed in a small plane crash in the Tehachapi Mountains were identified by the Kern County coroner on Monday, and among them was a longtime public defender.

Felipe Plascencia, a 53-year-old resident of Whittier, was also a nationally recognized figure in DUI cases in the latter half of his career.

Defenders and prosecutors throughout Southern California honored him Monday night on social media, praising him as a relentless advocate and beloved mentor.

In one photo, Plascencia is seen with fellow attorney Marina Villavicencio, of Yorba Linda, who was also killed in the crash on Thursday night.

The third victim was identified as Ruben Piranian, a resident of Granada Hills.

The Beechcraft D55 Baron was reported overdue Thursday on a flight from San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles.

Kern County authorities spotted the wreck on Saturday and retrieved the bodies over the weekend. Much of the wreckage was under about 5 feet of snow.

Federal investigators are trying to determine the cause of the crash.

Story and video ➤

TEHACHAPI — The three victims of the plane crash in the Tehachapi Mountains were recovered Sunday afternoon, the Kern County Sheriff's Office reported Sunday night.

"All bodies were under several feet of snow and trees that had fallen over and among the wreckage," Search and Rescue Sgt. Steven Williams said outside the Golden Hills Community Services District office.

He said the wreckage of the Beechcraft D55 Baron, which was first reported missing Thursday night during a snowstorm, was buried in many pieces on Cummings Mountain under about five feet of snow at an elevation of some 6,700 feet. All major components of the plane were found.

"Getting to the bodies was extremely difficult and working under those conditions was also difficult," the sergeant said. "We ended up flying them out."

The identities of the three people will be released by the coroner's division of the Sheriff's Office.

KCSO's operation is concluded, he said, adding that there will be operations in the future to recover the aircraft.

"It will be up to the owners of the aircraft and the property owners to make arrangements to remove the aircraft," he said.

The Sheriff's Office was first called around 10:30 p.m. Thursday for a plane that had an overdue flight plan from San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles.

One person was confirmed dead Friday as crews worked to find the plane.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will continue investigating the incident. Other agencies involved in the operation were the Civil Air Patrol, Kern County Fire Department and California Office of Emergency Services.

Original article can be found here ➤

Sgt. Steve Williams of the Kern County Sheriff’s Office Search & Rescue Team.

Search crews on Friday found the wreckage of a small airplane that crashed on a mountaintop near Tehachapi, along with at least one body, officials said.

The remains of one person were immediately found at the crash scene, Sgt. Steve Williams of the Kern County Sheriff’s Office Search & Rescue Team said.

But the airplane was reported to have three people on board, he said. Deep snow in the area slowed down the search process at the crash site, which was inaccessible by roads.

“We have been able to confirm there is the remains of at least one body at the wreckage site,” Williams said. “The report is that there were three people on board. We’re still attempting to confirm that.”

The search began Thursday night after the son of the pilot contacted the Federal Aviation Administration to report his father’s airplane, which was traveling from San Luis Obispo to Whiteman Airport in Pacoima, was overdue.

The Beechcraft D55 Baron took off about 4 p.m., FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said.

No information was available Friday about what may have gone wrong.

“During it’s flight, it disappeared,” Williams said.

A signal from a cell phone aboard the plane helped search crews find the wreckage, about nine miles west of Tehachapi, officials said.

With help from a Kern County Fire Department Helicopter, as well as the Civil Air Patrol, searchers found the crash site Friday afternoon.

Anyone with information can reach the Kern County Sheriff’s Office at 661-861-3110.

Story and video ➤

The Kern County Sheriff's Office confirmed Friday afternoon that at one person died and two are unaccounted for after a plane crash near Cummings Mountain sometime Thursday during a snowstorm.

A Beechcraft D55 Baron traveling from San Luis Obispo and heading for Whiteman Airport in Pacoima in Los Angeles was reported missing by the son of the pilot at around 10:30 p.m. Thursday after the aircraft failed to reach its destination, said Sgt. Steven Williams of the Kern County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue Unit.

Cummings Mountain is part of the Tehachapi Mountains. The plane's wreckage was found on Cummings Mountain, which rises above the Stallion Springs Police Department.

The Federal Aviation Administration launched an investigation, Williams said, including the search of at least one of the cell phones belonging to one of the passengers in addition to an analysis of radar that was conducted and led searchers to the discovery of the crash site around 10:30 a.m. Friday.

A body was discovered one hour later next to the crash site. However, rescue attempts of the other two occupants of the plane were unsuccessful due to the steep terrain and snow drifts in excess of three feet.

Assisting in the search was the Kern County Fire Department and Civil Air Patrol.

"Because of the terrain and several feet of snow, we haven't been able to go through the wreckage and determine exactly how many remains we have," Williams said.

The search for the missing passengers will resume Friday evening when Snow Cats will be used to blaze a trail to the crash site, Williams said.

The identity of the victim has not been confirmed, and the cause of the crash is still under investigation. Williams could not confirm the city of residence of the victim or the other people on the plane.

Original article can be found here ➤


  1. he was quite far east of any route between these two locations..

  2. The New Tone of San Luis ObispoTuesday, February 26, 2019 at 8:31:00 AM EST

    Normally, pilots go down through San Marcos VOR for better terrain between those points. They were not on an IFR plan apparently.

  3. I'm seeing his name in the Airmen's registry as a student pilot. The registry says carrying passengers prohibited. Anyone else find him on the registry?

  4. I think it's safe to assume that if he's flying a twin-engine airplane, he has a pilot's license. Hopefully he also has a multi-engine & instrument rating as well.

  5. He was a 74 year old commercial rated pilot and the operator of the FBO Burbank Air Service. His commercial and instrument ratings were for single engine aircraft only.
    The aircraft did not belong to the pilot but to yet another pair of attorneys in SoCal.

    Certificate: COMMERCIAL PILOT
    Date of Issue: 7/21/2017


    Type Ratings:

    CE-500 (VFR ONLY).

  6. Will be interesting to see if this is another SoCal 134.5 operation.

  7. ^^^ Sure does read that way.

    RIP to all

  8. What is a SO. Cal 134.5 OPeration?

  9. The pilot has been involved in numerous crashes of aircraft and court records show that he had flown and crashed aircraft before that he was not rated or qualified to fly. He was also involved in lawsuits regarding his mechanic's licenses for doing improper work and inspections on aircraft. FAA pulled his mechanic/inspection license, but he still performed work while he was suspended. He was know to fly people for money in his customer's plane without their knowledge. It was only a matter of time. Too bad he killed other people, but thank GOD he didn't crash into a school, hospital or mall. Newspaper reports show that he did crash into a car lot several years ago and injured a passenger. Aircraft was on a test flight after he performed maintenance on it and it ran out of gas. Per FAA regulations, he should not have had anyone aboard.

  10. Researched further and found that aircraft involved was Classified as Special Flight Permit; This means aircraft could only be operated legally for

    Flying aircraft to a point for repairs, alterations, maintenance, or storage (for example, ferrying an aircraft from point A to point B).
    Delivering new aircraft to the base of a purchaser or to a storage point.
    Conducting production flight tests.
    Evacuating an aircraft from impending danger.
    Conducting customer demonstration flights in new production aircraft that have passed or completed production flight tests.
    Excess weight operations.

    This aircraft had previously be involved in a crash back East years ago. It may not have ever been legal to fly since. This fits exactly into the way the pilot operated and disregarded the FAA rules, for his own enrichment.

  11. As others have mentioned, the crash site is a very strange location for a flight from KSBP to KWHP to end up. Whiteman is about 140 miles SE from San Luis Obispo and the typical route is down the coast. The crash site is about 116 miles almost due east of San Luis Obispo and about 50 miles almost due north from Whiteman. The only reasons I can think of for this would be either bad weather in Santa Barbara/Ventura, or pilot incapacitation.

  12. NTSB Investigation Docket: