Saturday, May 04, 2019

Guimbal Cabri G2, registered to a corporation and operated by Monumental Helicopters as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight, N572MD: Fatal accident occurred May 04, 2019 in Chesapeake Bay, Chesapeake Bay near Kent Island, Maryland

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Baltimore, Maryland
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: 

Location: Kent Island, MD
Accident Number: ERA19FA163
Date & Time: 05/04/2019, 1210 EDT
Registration: N572MD
Aircraft: Guimbal CABRI
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 4, 2019, about 1210 eastern daylight time, a Guimbal Cabri G2, N572MD, was destroyed when it impacted the Chesapeake Bay near Kent Island, Maryland. The private pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The helicopter was registered to a corporation and operated by Monumental Helicopters as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, and a special flight rules area flight plan was filed for the local flight that originated from Tipton Airport (FME), Fort Meade, Maryland, around 1130.

According to a fuel receipt, the pilot fueled the helicopter with 14 gallons of fuel before departing on the accident flight.

According to several witnesses and preliminary radar data obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the helicopter was flying around the southern point of Kent Island for several minutes before the accident occurred. One witness stated that the weather was "cloudy and the fog was heavy." Another witness reported that the helicopter was "flying very low to the water in dense fog," before the accident occurred.

According to FAA airman records, the pilot held a private pilot certificate with a rating for rotorcraft-helicopter. The pilot was issued a second-class medical certificate on July 6, 2017, with no limitations. The pilot's logbook was recovered, and he recorded 103.5 total hours of flight time; all of which were in the accident helicopter. He did not hold an instrument rating, nor did he record any instrument flight time or simulated instrument flight time.

According to FAA airworthiness records, the two-seat, light helicopter was manufactured in 2017. It was equipped with a Lycoming O-360-J2A engine and it was not certificated to fly in instrument meteorological conditions. The main rotor had 3 rotor blades that turned in the clockwise direction. The helicopter's most recent 100-hour inspection was completed on April 1, 2019, at a Hobbs time of 599.1 hours. The Hobbs meter that was observed postaccident indicated 645.5 hours.

The recorded weather observation at Bay Bridge Airport (W29), Stevensville, Maryland, around the time of the accident, which was about 8 miles to the northeast of the accident location, included wind from 350° at 5 knots, visibility 3 miles, mist, overcast clouds at 400 ft above ground level, temperature 18° C, dew point 18° C; and an altimeter setting of 29.88 inches of mercury.

The helicopter impacted the Chesapeake Bay, about 1 mile from the shoreline and was located in about 63 feet of water. All major components of the helicopter were recovered and an oil and fuel sheen was noted on the water by first responders. Flight control continuity was confirmed from the flight controls to the main rotor and tail rotor through multiple overstress fractures. Continuity was confirmed from the throttle to the engine through all push pull tubes. The windscreen, doors, and forward section of the fuselage were fragmented. The instrument console remained attached to the main wreckage through cables and wires. Both seats were impact separated but remained attached to the fuselage by their seatbelts.

All main rotor blades remained attached to the rotor head but were removed to facilitate recovery. The yellow rotor blade exhibited impact damage and was fragmented. The lead/lag damper was not extended. The green rotor blade was impact damaged and the outboard portion of the blade was partially separated. The lead/lag damper was extended about 0.5 centimeters (cm). The red rotor blade was impact damaged and sections of the trailing edge were splayed open. The red lead/lag damper was extended about 4 cm.

The fenestron remained attached to the tailboom. Chordwise scratching was noted on the fenestron housing. All fenestron vanes were bent the opposite direction of travel. The tail rotor rotated freely when the tail rotor drive shaft was rotated by hand. The tail rotor drive shaft was bent and separated from the transmission. Continuity was confirmed from the anti-torque pedals to the tail rotor.

The engine remained attached to the helicopter through two of the three engine mounts and was removed from the airframe for further examination. Crankshaft continuity was confirmed by rotating the scroll assembly by hand. The scroll assembly exhibited impact damage about 1/3 of the circumference. Thumb compression and suction was noted on the Nos. 2, 3, and 4 cylinders. The No. 1 cylinder was removed and examined. When water was placed in the cylinder, the majority of the water leaked through the exhaust valve seat and a minor amount of water leaked through the intake valve seat.

The carburetor was removed from the engine. Fuel and water were noted in the bowl. The carburetor floats exhibited hydraulic deformation. The accelerator pump operated when the throttle arm was moved by hand. The carburetor fuel inlet screen was removed and no debris was noted. The carburetor gasket was removed and no tears were noted. The carburetor heat door was located in the closed position. The assembly was impact damaged and pushed up onto the carburetor. The automatic carburetor door was tested using a 12V battery. When the wires were connected to the battery, the door operated and moved to an open position. The wires were then moved to the opposite poles of the battery and the carburetor door moved to the closed position.

The oil suction screen was removed and no debris was noted. The oil filter was removed and disassembled. No debris was noted in the filter. The engine driven fuel pump was removed from the engine and it operated when moved by hand. The helicopter was equipped with an electronic and single-conventional magneto ignition system. The magneto was removed from the engine and produced spark on all towers when rotated.

An Electronic Pilot Monitor was removed from the instrument panel and sent to the NTSB Recorders Laboratory for further examination. In addition, the passenger's cell phone was retained and sent to the NTSB Recorders Laboratory for data download.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Guimbal
Registration: N572MD
Model/Series: CABRI G2
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Monumental Helicopters
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Instrument Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: W29, 17 ft msl
Observation Time: 1600 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 18°C / 18°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 5 knots / , 350°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 400 ft agl
Visibility:  3 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.88 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Departure Point: Fort Meade(Odenton), MD (FME)
Destination: Fort Meade(Odenton), MD (FME) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 38.815833, -76.383056

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 

Matthew David Clarke

Matthew David Clarke, 36, of Pasadena passed away suddenly on May 4, 2019. 

The name Matthew means gift of God and he spent his life being just that. Matthew was the middle child of Steve and Barbara (Weller) Clarke. He grew up in Pasadena and graduated from Calvary Baptist Academy in 2001. He married Allison Gray on July 19, 2003, the two met during a youth conference at church. 

Matthew cherished and absolutely adored Allison. Together they served the Lord, raised their children, and were business partners. At the age of 20 Matthew embarked on a career with New York Life. Matthew was an Independent Financial Advisor with New York life for many years and was the founder of Retirement Income Solutions. 

Matt has studied at the American College and earned the designations of Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF) and Certified Long Term Care Consultant (CLTC). In 2004, he was named Rookie of the Year for the Baltimore New York Life office and then in 2008 was promoted to Partner, where he ranked in the top 25 Partners nationally (out of 300+) in his firm. He also has been a qualifying member of Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) many times. MDRT is recognized throughout the industry as the standard of excellence among financial professionals. In 2012 he was President of National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) , Anne Arundel Chapter. Matthew has successfully passed his Life and Health license exams along with his Series 6, 63 and 65. 

Matthew was Christ like, hardworking, ambitious, and determined and it reflected in the quality of his work. He received numerous accolades and awards in his career. Following his devotion to his Savior Jesus his family relationships were the most important thing. He shared a special relationship with his parents not only as son but friend and next door neighbor, together they shared the unique experience of raising three generations together. He enjoyed MANY hobbies to include, hunting, fishing, shooting, leatherworking, boating, camping in his RV and was a legend on the grill his smoking skills left everyone coming back for seconds. Before he passed he was working on his latest smoking Delicacy an alligator.  He relished in doing all these activities with others creating lasting memories. He loved quality one on one time with each of his children they always enjoyed breakfast with dad. He was a devoted member of Grace Pointe Church of the Nazarene where he served as a leader on the church board. His relationship with God did not express its self only in his church membership but in his personal devotion to the Lord. He constantly abided in his presence and it equipped him to lead his family and community. He was truly a renaissance man, he could go from baking a cake to sitting in a tree stand hunting and excel at each.

He was preceded in death by his father-in-law, Rev. Thomas Gray; grandfather Everett Weller; grandmothers, Shirley Weller, and Jean Clarke. He leaves to cherish precious memories his wife, Allison Michelle Gray Clarke; his children, Carter, Tanner, and Madeline; his parents, Steve and Barbara Clarke; his siblings, Niki Furry and Tim Clarke and his wife Patrice; grandfather, Alvin Clarke, Jr.; mother-in-law, Karen Gray; sister-in-law, Ashley Fisher and her husband Cody; 5 nephews, Alex, Dylan, Everett, Graham, and Harvey; uncles and aunts, Steve and Janet Weller and Dave and Gail Clarke; a host of other relatives, business associates, and special friends.

The family will receive visitors at Singleton Funeral & Cremation Services, P.A., 1 2nd Ave. SW (at Crain Hwy) on Friday, May 10 from 7-9 pm. A Celebration of Life will be celebrated at Grace Pointe Church of the Nazarene in Severn on Saturday at 1 PM with a visitation from 12:00 noon until time of service. Interment Glen Haven Memorial Park. Memorial contributions can be made in Matthew’s name to Annapolis Area Christian School for the Clarke Children’s Education Fund- 109 Burns Crossing Rd, Severn, MD 21144. Online donations may be made at

Matthew David Clarke

Charles "Chuck" Knight

The pilot who died in a helicopter crash in the Chesapeake Bay Saturday was remembered this week as an “attentive and conscientious” flyer by those who taught him how to navigate the skies.

Officials responded Saturday around 12:30 p.m to a report of a downed helicopter just south of the lighthouse near Bloody Point, which is off of Kent Island and home to the deepest part of the Chesapeake Bay. The bodies of pilot, Charles Knight, 38, of Mount Airy, and passenger, Matt Clarke, 36 of Pasadena, were recovered around 6 p.m. from the wreckage, found in about 55 feet of water. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Knight’s family could not be reached for comment Monday. A relative of Clarke’s declined to comment Saturday.

News of the crash shocked the staff of Monumental Helicopters, a Tipton-based company that rented the helicopter to Knight on Saturday around 11:30 a.m. Knight had graduated from Monumental’s pilot training program about a year ago and was a familiar face in the tight-knit flying community, said company spokesman Seth Clute.

“We’re dealing with a lot of emotions, a lot of questions that are unanswered,” Clute said. “We’re very interested and invested in finding out what happened. We just don’t know, and that may be one of the worst parts about it.”

Knight did not share any details about the nature of the trip before he took off Saturday, but Clute said he rented the company’s bright yellow Cabri G2.

Monumental owners bought the Cabri G2 model in 2017 for $415,000 and named it the “Bee.” The tiny two-person helicopter was purchased specifically for use in the company’s flight school because of its higher weight capacity, the Capital Gazette reported at the time.

Knight, who was known as a frequent flyer at Monumental, rented the “Bee” several times a month, including the weekend before the crash, Clute said.

Company officials have been in contact with investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration, said Clute, adding he is eager to figure out what went wrong.

“A loss like this deeply affects all of us,” Clute said.

Coast Guard officials ask that if anyone saw anything in the vicinity south of Kent Island, that they contact the Sector Maryland-National Capital Region at 410-576-2525 or on VHF-FM Channel 16.

Original article ➤

The bodies of two men were recovered after a Guimbal Cabri G2 crashed into the Chesapeake Bay, near Bloody Point on the Eastern Shore, after noon Saturday, the Maryland Natural Resources Police said in a statement Sunday morning.

Police identified the victims as the pilot, Charles Knight, 38, of Mount Airy, and the passenger, Matt Clarke, 36 of Pasadena. They said the wreckage was found in 55 feet of water about 6 p.m. Saturday and that Natural Resources Police investigators are working with the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration investigators to recover the wreckage. Police said autopsies will be conducted.

Knight’s family could not be reached Sunday morning; a relative of Clarke’s declined to comment.

Capt. Brian Albert said Saturday that officers responded about 12:30 p.m. to a downed helicopter just south of the lighthouse and Maryland Natural Resources Police were first on the scene.

Bloody Point is off Kent Island, near the Bay Bridge. Nicknamed “The Hole,” Bloody Point is the deepest part of the bay at 174 feet deep.

The Anne Arundel County Fire Department sent considerable resources to assist neighboring Queen Anne’s County emergency responders, Capt. Russ Davies said. The helicopter went down about ¾ of a mile out into the water, he said.

The department sent several boats, a dive team and its Canteen Unit, which provides water and food to emergency responders, to Kent Island in support of a host of Queen Anne’s County fire companies, Davies said.

The U.S. Coast Guard launched two boats to search for the two men. Other agencies responding also include the National Transportation Safety Board, the Federal Aviation Administration, and the Talbot County Fire Department.

The Coast Guard reported winds of five to 10 knots, one-foot seas and a water temperature of 62 degrees.

The helicopter, which was not a military craft, had taken off from Tipton Airport near Fort Meade in Anne Arundel County, said Scott Wheatley of the Queen Anne’s Department of Emergency Services.

Trevor Hardman, a Prince George’s County firefighter, was fishing for rockfish with his 15-year-old son and his friend when he heard a “frantic” distress call over marine VHF radio.

“Another boat said they witnessed a helicopter crash in front of them near Bloody Point,” Hardman said. “I was about a mile away, so I turned around and rushed to Bloody Point.”

Hardman said it was just after noon and the heavy fog in the area had just begun to lift.

At the time, he said there were several other boaters trying to convey latitude and longitude coordinates to rescue authorities to help them find the site of the impact.

Hardman readied lifejackets to pull people out of the water, but when he arrived, he said, “there was nothing but pieces everywhere and jet fuel.”

Hardman pulled a flight bag out of the water that contained a flight log and a maintenance record, he said.

He said the helicopter was a Cabri G2, per the records he found. He handed the records over to the U.S. Coast Guard.

A Coast Guard spokesperson confirmed the type of helicopter and said all materials handed over to the Coast Guard were then transferred to Maryland Natural Resources Police.

An employee at Kent Point Marina said she heard the helicopter circling over a nearby farm shortly after noon.

“Then it went over the marina and it was gone,” said Brandi Colbert, who works in the marina’s bait house.

Coast Guard officials ask that if anyone saw anything in the vicinity south of Kent Island, that they contact the Sector Maryland-National Capital Region at 410-576-2525 or on VHF-FM Channel 16.
Original article can be found here ➤

STEVENSVILLE, Maryland — A Guimbal Cabri G2 crashed into the water near Kent Island Saturday afternoon and killed two men on board.

The Coast Guard confirmed they found two bodies at 8 p.m. near the debris.

Maryland's Department of Natural Resources said the two men they were searching for are 38-year-old Charles Knight and 36-year-old Matt Clarke.

An eyewitness who lives right on the edge of Bloody Point, near where the crash happened, said he saw the helicopter faltering not long before it crashed into the water.

"He come up from there," the neighbor said, pointing at the trees behind his house. "Went over Poplar Island, turned around and come back. When he come back over the trees, the helicopter started missing."

The neighbor asked that his name not be revealed.

Monumental Helicopters says it was one of their Cabri G2 helicopters that this neighbor saw overhead. 

The company said a private pilot, who the DNR identified as Knight, rented it this morning.

The DNR says Knight and Clarke took off from Tipton Airport in the morning and around noon, a call came in that a two-passenger helicopter had crashed into the water near Kent Island off of Bloody Point.

"I thought he was going to hit the house. I really did," the neighbor said.

The neighbor can see where crews had been meeting all day to start the search and rescue mission from his doorstep, but officials said that about a mile off shore, there is a large pile of debris.

The Coast Guard said the wreckage eventually led Anne Arundel divers to find the helicopter and bodies of the two men killed in the crash.

DNR officials said the weather wasn't that bad the morning the chopper was flying, with low winds and only slightly limited visibility.

However, they're still looking for the cause of the crash.

They suspended their search for the night because of weather but plan to continue Sunday morning.

Original article can be found here ➤

The bodies of two men were recovered after their Guimbal Cabri G2 crashed in Maryland, police said.

The helicopter went down Saturday in Chesapeake Bay, Maryland Natural Resources police said. Authorities identified the victims as Maryland residents Charles Knight, 38, of Mount Airy, and Matt Clarke, 36, of Pasadena. Knight was the pilot and Clarke a passenger, police said.

The two went missing Saturday when the helicopter crashed around 12:30 p.m. about a mile south of Kent Island, Maryland, police said. Authorities found the wreckage in about 55 feet of water Saturday evening.

The cause of the crash is unknown. Natural Resources Police investigators will be working with the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration to recover the wreckage, police said.

A brother of one of the men was "boating in the vicinity" when he saw the crash and notified the Coast Guard, said Corinne Zilnicki, a Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class.

First responders found debris in the area but had not located the men earlier Saturday, said Scott Wheatley, assistant chief with the Queen Anne's County Department of Emergency Services. After several hours searching for the men, crews suspended operations as weather conditions worsened.

Capt. Brian Albert with the Maryland Natural Resources Police had said the search will resume Sunday morning.

Rescue boats from the Coast Guard's station in Annapolis, a dive team with the Anne Arundel County Fire Department and several other agencies assisted in the search for the missing men.

The crash took place near Bloody Point in Queen Anne's County, south of the Bay Bridge. The Bloody Point Hole is the deepest part of the bay at 174 feet below sea level and approximately a mile west-southwest off the southern tip of Kent Island, according to the Maryland Geological Survey.

Original article can be found here ➤

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