Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Bahamas: New Pilot Requirements ‘Quite Close’, Says Minister

Pilot Darren Clarke 

The chief investigator of the Air Accident Investigation Department confirmed that the pilot of Piper PA-23-250 Aztec F (N62769) that crashed in shallow waters near Mastic Point, Andros, killing all on board on January 17, 2018 was not licensed to operate commercial flights nor did the pilot have the required ratings to operate the aircraft in visually impairing weather conditions.




Aviation regulators are “quite close” to the introduction of new pilot licensing requirements, Tourism and Aviation Minister Dionisio D’Aguilar said yesterday.

In an interview with reporters outside of Cabinet Mr. D’Aguilar said industry officials were preparing to launch the new requirements on the heels of the work currently being done to “frustrate” illegal charter operators within the industry.

He also revealed officials were presently consulting with industry stakeholders to clearly identify what they are willing to work with moving forward.

“Obviously you don’t want to completely kill commerce by air,” the Freetown MP said. “I mean, it is a very important component of our economy and... we want to ensure the travelling public are in planes and piloted by pilots who are properly licensed and have all the necessary qualifications.”

The sector has undergone intense scrutiny in the wake of a fatal plane crash off the coast of Andros a year ago. The January 17th, 2018 accident reignited concerns about the aviation sector’s longstanding “hacker” problem which officials have since vowed to address.

A report into that crash portrayed the pilot, Darren Clarke, as a rule-breaker who experienced anxiety flying in non-ideal conditions and who was not qualified to fly the doomed aircraft. After the crash, which killed six people, the Air Accident Investigation Department recommended Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority “increase its surveillance and oversight of the general aviation sector and put in place policies to reduce the high incidence of unauthorized commercial operations.”

The fallout prompted a pledge by the Civil Aviation Authority to clamp down on illegal charter operations by embracing technology, involving law enforcement and increasing surveillance to identify and prosecute unregulated operators.

The Piper Aztec involved in the crash was US-registered in the state of Delaware. Sources indicated the pilot had a US license, which required a medical examination every two years, but none had been conducted since 2014.

Mr. D’Aguilar, in the days after the incident, described the issue of illegal charters as “unacceptable,” asserting the practice was allowed to continue due to “decades of neglect”.

Addressing the status of the new regulations yesterday, Mr. D’Aguilar said: “We do want to ensure that everybody is properly licensed before they fly a plane for Bahamians moving within the islands.”

“So I think (Charles Beneby, the Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority’s director general) is very close to saying something, I just need to find out what and when.”

Mr. D’Aguilar, when reminded that tomorrow would mark the one year anniversary of the ill-fated Andros flight, commented: “We all are very mindful of that date. I was hoping that we would be able to roll something out prior to that date and I am hoping that we are, if we are not going to meet that deadline that it is very close. But I know, as I’ve said, there has been a lot of work done on how best to regulate this industry, properly regulate this industry without crushing the conduct of commerce by air.”

He said despite the push to implement new regulations, there needs be a level of focus given to ensuring that what is proposed does not bog-down the sector with legal push-back and judicial reviews.

“So, it is always a lot more difficult than you think,” he told reporters.

Original article can be found here ➤ http://www.tribune242.com

Mayors: California Pacific Airlines can’t buy fuel; Pierre, Watertown, South Dakota mayors ask feds for emergency move to let them find new airline



The mayors of Pierre and Watertown, South Dakota, have asked federal officials issue an emergency order so the communities can find another air carrier because they say California Pacific Airlines is having difficulties even buying fuel for its subsidized flights from the South Dakota cities to Denver.

The letter dated Jan. 10 posted this weekend on the federal website www.regulations.gov., is the latest turn in what Pierre Mayor Steve Harding and Watertown Mayor Sarah Caron say appears to be CP Air’s inability to fly, beset by financial and mechanical problems.

CP Air, based at an airport in Carlsbad, just north of San Diego, was formed in 2009 but had no operations until last year when it bought Aerodynamics Inc., (ADI), based in Kennesaw, Georgia, an Atlanta suburb. CP Air’s only aircraft were the four 50-passenger jets ADI had been leasing for its charter service.

Rebranding and re-painting the jets as California Pacific Airlines in August, CPAir continued ADI’s schedule of 12 round trips per week from Watertown and Pierre to Denver, under the federally subsidized Essential Air Service program.

ADI first won a two-year EAS contract beginning flights Aug. 15, 2016. While CPAir was buying it last summer, ADI won a second two-year EAS contract last summer, due in part to the requests from Mayor Harding and Mayor Caron, who touted the great service ADI had provided.

The EAS contract pays ADI/CPAir $7 million a year for flying the 12 weekly flights, on a reimbursement plan that means if a flight is cancelled, no subsidy is paid for it.

But when CPAir last fall began focusing also on new flights from Carlsbad, California, to Las Vegas and Phoenix, service to Pierre and Watertown began to suffer, the mayors told officials of the U.S. Department of Transportation last month. In that December letter, the mayors asked DOT to step in and help CPAir get its finances and jet maintenance in order within 30 days, or allow the two communities to seek another airline under the EAS program.

CP Air owes the Pierre Regional Airport for several months of landing fees and other bills totalling about $38,000, AIrport Manager Mike Isaacs told the Capital Journal last week.

The general manager of the Ramkota Hotel in Watertown said the airline owes the hotel for about four months of bills for flight crews and other employees.

But in the Jan. 10 letter, the mayors said things were so bad, they couldn’t wait.

“It has become obvious that the financial situation at CP AIr has continued to worse in January and we no longer can wait for for those 30 days to determine next steps,” Harding and Caron wrote to Joel Szabat, deputy assistant secretary at DOT’s Office of Aviation and International Affairs. “Approximately two weeks ago, Watertown and Pierre began dealing with an outside investor for CP Air that started to rectify some past due bills, but most importantly was paying for several day-to-day functions such as purchasing fuel on his credit card. Due to CP AIr’s lack of payments to vendors, most vendors are now requiring payment at time of services rendered. Watertown and Pierre were notified this morning (Jan. 10) that the investor is no longer purchasing fuel for flights at Watertown and Pierre. With the inability for CP Air to consistently purchase fuel, many flights have been canceled and we have minimal expectations that CP Air will be able to continue service at Watertown or Pierre.”

Harding and Isaacs told the Capital Journal that a Texas oil company owner who is an investor in CP Air had been paying some of the airlines bills. The oil company's name actually has shown up on the credit card receipts of passengers buying tickets on CP Air recently through its 800 number.

The mayors asked DOT to allow them to start the search for a new airline as soon as possible.

“We formally request the (DOT) to issue an Emergency Request for Proposal for Essential Air Service at both Watertown and Pierre as expeditiously as possible, so that we can find a carrier that can operate at both communities and provide the Essential Air Service that both communities rely upon.”

According to CP Air’s website, at www.mycpair.com, the flights to and from Pierre and Watertown were on for Sunday. A CP Air employee at the Pierre airport on Sunday said the two flights on Sunday were on time, as they had been the past week.

But the number of passengers, at 17 boarding at Pierre, continues to be lower as it has been for the past couple of months, than normal levels in 2017 and earlier in 2018.

Last month, CP Air announced it was cancelling flights in California to focus on the EAS-subsidized flights from Pierre and Watertown.

ADI/CP Air officials have said a key problem is the same one faced by all smaller airlines the past five years: a pilot shortage. On its website, CP Air officials say the company is training new pilots who soon will be flying its jets.

Despite the strongly worded letter from the mayors, and their openness to finding a new airline, Harding said they haven’t shut the door to CP Air.

“We just want to make sure that DOT knows that both cities are concerned and we want them to continue to work on finding a resolution,” Harding told the Capital Journal on Sunday. “The best resolution is for California Pacific to address the concerns and get back on track and have back-up flights and we can just continue on.”

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.capjournal.com

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Federal Aviation Administration Orders Nearly 3,000 Safety Employees Back to Work: Workers had been sidelined during partial government shutdown


The Wall Street Journal
By Andy Pasztor
Updated January 15, 2019 4:26 p.m. ET

The Federal Aviation Administration has ordered nearly 3,000 inspectors and other employees in safety-critical jobs back to work, according to an agency update of its staffing plan for the partial government shutdown.

The revised count released Tuesday, which details the FAA’s latest staffing in response to the shutdown, shows more than 3,100 workers back on the job without pay in what is described as the agency’s aviation-safety organization.

Before a big push that started late last week to recall safety inspectors and other employees responsible for monitoring airline operations, agency officials said only a few hundred such workers were exempt from furloughs.

About 24,000 air-traffic controllers have remained on the job since the partial government shutdown began more than three weeks ago. But the recall of other safety critical employees was prompted partly by the expectation that normal funding probably won’t resume for some time.

The breakdown released by the agency indicates that roughly 14,000 of the FAA’s total workforce of 44,700 remain off the job.

“We are recalling inspectors and engineers to perform duties to ensure continuous operational safety of the entire national airspace,” the agency said Tuesday. “We proactively conduct risk assessment, and we have determined that after three weeks it is appropriate to recall inspectors and engineers.”

An FAA spokesman said Tuesday that roughly 500 inspectors were working at the end of last week and about 2,200 were expected to be on the job by Friday. The spokesman didn’t elaborate on other categories of workers that have been recalled.

Like many other federal agencies, the FAA has been pushed into uncharted waters by the current budget impasse because past furloughs lasted for shorter periods. That meant agency leaders generally didn’t have to make decisions about recalling the bulk of the FAA’s inspectors, engineers and other technical experts most responsible for overseeing safety and monitoring airline operations.

But this time, with White House officials suggesting the partial federal shutdown potentially could stretch weeks longer, the FAA’s leadership has opted to expand categories of employees subject to recall. The decision also reflects management’s conclusion that most employees doing safety-related jobs would be willing to heed the call to resume working without pay.

Since union representatives have organized rallies to complain about possible erosion of safety, FAA leaders have put the onus on employees to shore up safeguards by complying with back-to-work directives.

The FAA’s revised totals also show more than five dozen high-ranking officials working, along with nearly 800 other employees assigned to manage airport improvements and carry out research and engineering functions. Some of the recalled workers are responsible for areas singled out by some lawmakers and industry officials as especially hurt by furloughs. Unless workers are specifically exempt from furloughs, it is against the law for them to carry out their normal duties while agency accounts remains unfunded.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.wsj.com

Monday, January 14, 2019

Beech A36 Bonanza, N410BC: Accident occurred December 17, 2016 in Ormond Beach, Volusia County, Florida

Air One arrives at the accident scene as the pilot speaks with Dale Cohen, who’d arrived there on foot. 


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

Additional Participating Entity: Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Orlando, Florida


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


http://registry.faa.gov/N410BC





Location: Ormond Beach, FL
Accident Number: ERA17LA070
Date & Time: 12/17/2016, 1607 EST
Registration: N410BC
Aircraft: BEECH A36
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel exhaustion
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On December 17, 2016, at 1607 eastern standard time, a Beech A36, N410BC, was substantially damaged during a forced landing at Ormond Beach, Florida. The private pilot was seriously injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as a personal flight. Day, visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated at DeLand Municipal Airport (DED), DeLand, Florida, about 1430 and was destined for Mid Florida Air Service Airport (X55), Eustis, Florida.

The pilot reported in a telephone interview that he was returning to his home airport and was practicing maneuvers at 1,200 feet. The left fuel tank ran dry, and the engine lost all power. He stated that his normal procedure was to exhaust the fuel in one tank before switching to the other. He attempted a restart after switching to the right tank, which, he stated, held 40 gallons of fuel. The engine would not restart, so he performed a forced landing in a field. After touchdown, the landing gear collapsed and the airplane nosed down into the ground.

The pilot did not complete and return the NTSB Form 6120.1, Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report, as requested on multiple occasions by the NTSB investigator-in-charge. The pilot also did not provide the aircraft maintenance records when requested by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector. The details of the latest annual inspection of the aircraft and engine were not available.

The wreckage was recovered from the accident site on December 22, 2017. According to the salvage operator, the left wing was substantially damaged and the left wing fuel tank was breached. The fuselage sustained structural damage. The right wing had minimal damage and the right wing fuel tank was undamaged. No fuel was found in either wing fuel tank. The wing tank selector handle was found in the "OFF" position.

The engine was examined on April 6, 2017. The engine was rotated by hand at the propeller, and compression and suction were observed on all six cylinders. All gears were observed rotating at the accessory (rear) section of the engine. The top spark plugs were removed; their electrodes were intact and were light grey in color. The engine-driven fuel pump was removed; the drive coupling was intact and the pump rotated smoothly.

The engine-driven fuel pump was forwarded to the manufacturer's facility for further examination. The fuel pump displayed impact damage signatures; one of the fuel line AN fittings was fractured. The fuel pump drive shaft was noted to have remained intact and the fuel pump drive shaft was capable of normal rotation. The fractured AN fitting was removed and a serviceable fitting was installed. The fuel pump was placed on a production bench for testing; the fuel pump operated normally. There were no anomalies noted.

According to the FAA medical file, the pilot was first medically certified to fly in 1978. In 2004, he reported a diagnosis of hypertension and treatment with medication. In February, 2008, he was admitted to hospital for several weeks with multiple complex complications of chronic alcoholism, then was admitted for alcohol rehabilitation, and he reported that to the FAA. After obtaining more information including a neurology evaluation following an alcohol withdrawal seizure, and a psychiatric evaluation, the FAA eventually granted him a special issuance third class medical certificate in 2009, which was dependent on him being evaluated and undergoing periodic testing for alcohol.

At the time of his last aviation medical examination, dated August 30, 2011, the pilot reported 1,650 total flight hours. In September, 2011, he tested positive for alcohol and the FAA withdrew his medical certificate in November, 2011.

The pilot was taken emergently to the hospital by helicopter following the accident. Blood drawn at 1709 tested positive for 0.177 gm/dl of alcohol. No other toxicology testing was performed.

Ethanol is the intoxicant commonly found in beer, wine, and liquor. It acts as a central nervous system depressant. After ingestion, at low doses, it impairs judgment, psychomotor functioning, and vigilance; at higher doses it can cause coma and death. The effects of ethanol on aviators are generally well understood; it significantly impairs pilots' performance, even at very low levels. CFR Part 91.17 (a) prohibits any person from acting or attempting to act as a crewmember of a civil aircraft while having 0.040 gm/dl or more ethanol in the blood.

Unlike many other substances, ethanol is eliminated from the body at a fairly constant rate. The rate varies with the regularity of drinking and whether or not the individual has recently eaten, but ranges from 0.010 gm/dl/hr in infrequent drinkers with an empty stomach to as high as 0.035 gm/dl/hr in heavy drinkers who have eaten. As a result, the minimum and maximum levels of ethanol can be back-calculated with some assurance of accuracy. Thus, at the time of the accident, the pilot's alcohol level was likely at or above 0.185 gm/dl.

Pilot Information


Certificate: Private
Age: 57, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: None 
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/30/2011
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 
Flight Time: 1500 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1000 hours (Total, this make and model)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: BEECH
Registration: N410BC
Model/Series: A36 UNDESIGNATED
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1979
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: E-1606
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection:  Unknown
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3651 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time:
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT:
Engine Model/Series: IO-520 Series
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power:
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: OMN, 27 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1450 EST
Direction from Accident Site: 80°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 5000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / None
Wind Direction: 210°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.1 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 28°C / 17°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:  No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Deland, FL (DED)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Eustis, FL (X55)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1430 EST
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information


Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude:  29.266667, -81.254722 (est)



NTSB Identification: ERA17LA070
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, December 17, 2016 in Ormond Beach, FL
Aircraft: BEECH A36, registration: N410BC
Injuries: 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On December 17, 2016, at 1510 eastern standard time, a Beech A36, N410BC, was substantially damaged during a forced landing at Ormond Beach, Florida. The private pilot was seriously injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day, visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated at DeLand Municipal Airport (DED), DeLand, Florida, about 1430 and was destined for Eustis, Florida (X55).

The pilot reported that he was returning to his home airport and was practicing maneuvers at 1,200 feet. The left fuel tank ran dry, and the engine lost all power. He attempted a restart after switching to the right tank, which held 40 gallons of fuel. The engine would not restart, so he attempted a forced landing in a field. After touchdown, the landing gear collapsed and the airplane nosed down into the ground.

An inspector with the Federal Aviation Administration responded to the accident site and examined the wreckage. Structural damage to wings and fuselage was confirmed. The left fuel tank was empty and the right fuel tank contained fuel.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

Piper PA-28-181, N75191: Fatal accident occurred January 13, 2019 in Salem, McCook County, South Dakota

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Rapid City, South Dakota
Piper Aircraft; Vero Beach, Florida
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

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


https://registry.faa.gov/N75191

Location: Salem, SD
Accident Number: CEN19LA053
Date & Time: 01/13/2019, 1425 CST
Registration: N75191
Aircraft: Piper PA28
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On January 13, 2019, about 1425 central standard time, a Piper PA28 181 airplane, N75191, impacted terrain about 6 miles south of Salem, South Dakota. The private pilot, the only person on board, was fatally injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was owned and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area and no flight plan was filed for the cross-country flight that originated from the Mitchell Municipal Airport (MHE), Mitchell, South Dakota, and was destined for Mary Skie-Lincoln County Airport (Y14), Tea, South Dakota.

The pilot reported to Sioux Falls Approach Control that he was having chest pains and was blacking out. The controller tried to get the pilot to land anywhere. The controller lost radio contact with the airplane about 1425.

According to initial information from the McCook County Sheriff's Office, they were notified by a controller that a man in a small airplane was having a medical emergency and were given an approximate location of the airplane. Search and rescue personnel along with officers from the sheriff's office were dispatched. About 1430, they were notified that air traffic control had lost all communication with the airplane. About 1435, their dispatch received notification that the airplane had been located.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the pilot held a private pilot certificate with airplane single-engine land and instrument ratings. The pilot held an FAA third class medical certificate, dated October 5, 2016. On the application for that medical certificate, he reported that he had accumulated 2,250 hours of total flight tine and had accumulated 50 hours of flight time in the six months before the application. That medical certificate was issued with the following limitation: Must wear corrective lenses.

N75191 was a 1976-model Piper PA28 181, four-place, single-engine, low-wing, fixed tricycle landing gear, semi-monocoque design airplane with serial number 28-7690310. According to maintenance records, the airplane was powered by a normally aspirated, direct drive, air-cooled, horizontally opposed, carburetor equipped, four cylinder, 180-horsepower Lycoming O-360 engine with serial number L-1039-36A, which drove a two-blade fixed pitch Sensenich propeller.

At 1422, the recorded weather and MHE was: Wind 200° at 13 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition overcast clouds at 1,500 ft; temperature 1° C; dew point -3° C; altimeter 30.30 inches of mercury.

According to initial information from the McCook County Sheriff's Office, the airplane wreckage was located in a harvested crop field about 30 nautical miles and 108° from MHE. The wreckage was subsequently photographically documented. Review of the sheriff's information and photographs revealed the cockpit of the airplane was crushed. All major components of the airplane can be accounted for in the photographs. The tail of the plane was facing north. A debris field and tracks in the field showed the airplane had made contact with the ground about 600 to 800 ft north of the airplane's resting spot. The total debris field was about 600 ft long 300 ft at the widest part and was cone shaped, getting wider to the south. About 100 ft southeast of the airplane the pilot was found. The airplane wreckage was removed from the scene and was placed in a secure building.

The McCook County Coroner was asked to arrange for an autopsy to be performed on the pilot and to have toxicological samples taken.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N75191
Model/Series: PA28 181
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KMHE, 1299 ft msl
Observation Time: 1422 CST
Distance from Accident Site: 30 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 1°C / -3°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 13 knots / , 200°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 1500 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.3 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Mitchell, SD (MHE)
Destination: Tea, SD (Y14)

Wreckage and Impact Information


Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  43.618611, -97.381111 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

Comet Henry John Haraldson
February 11, 1949 - January 13, 2019

Comet Haraldson died Sunday, January 13th, near Salem, South Dakota, in an airplane accident. He was 69 years old. 

Comet was born on February 11, 1949, in Sharon, ND, the first son of Comet and Olive (Ruud) Haraldson.  He attended school in Harvey ND, Aberdeen SD, and graduated in 1967 from Pierre SD High School.  Comet was an accomplished football and basketball player, and participated in track and field.  He was also an excellent pitcher for the Pierre American Legion baseball team.  In 1967, the team won the State title.

Comet attended USD in Vermillion on a baseball scholarship.  He earned a BA and MA.  While living in Vermillion, he was a member of ‘the Villagers’, a folk singing group. They played around the area, not only earning them a little extra spending money, but occasionally guaranteeing king crab legs at Bogners on a Friday night.

Comet loved music, and was a self-taught guitar player.  He played in several bands, including the Great Wizard Band in San Jose CA.  After his little brother, Steve, graduated from high school, Comet formed his own band, ‘Dakota Morning’, which included Steve and Nick Schwebach.  Their first ‘gig’ was in Trent SD.  From there, they played several places around SD, then sang their way thru Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming, spending several months playing in Jackson Hole.  He also played in various bands around Sioux Falls, most notably Arlie’s All Stars, a group composed of Sioux Falls area professionals whose annual performances have raised more than $800,000 for charitable causes.

He began law school at USD in the fall of 1976 and graduated with a JD in 1979.  After graduation, he was employed as a law clerk for Judge Wollman in Pierre for one year.  He joined the law firm of Woods, Fuller, Shultz and Smith in 1980 and worked there until his death.

He married Tena Anderson in 1981, and they have 2 sons: Andrew and John.

Comet dearly loved his boys, and loved spending time with them.  They spent many summer weekends camping in Yankton, and riding the jet ski around Gavins Point.  In the winter, he would take them snow skiing to Great Bear; as they got older, to Copper Mountain and Keystone CO.  He was very proud and supportive of his boys.

Comet’s hobbies included singing, playing the guitar, reading, traveling, flying his own airplane, and touring on motorcycles.  He was a voracious reader.  He loved his annual ‘rituals’: attending the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and the Sioux Falls Jazz Fest.

 Another ritual was his annual trip with the ‘Golf Guys’.  Every spring, he and his buddies would head to Florida, where they golfed many of their courses under the guidance of their fearless leader, Brad Grossenburg.  Their love of the sport eventually brought them to the birth place of golf - St Andrews, Scotland.  They also golfed many courses around Ireland.   

In 1997 he met Naomi Keiser.  Together they shared everything from their love of travel, friendship, music, movies, good food, reading…to the simple pleasures of a cup of coffee in the morning, and watching the sun set across the beautiful SD sky at night. 

Comet loved life!  Every morning he woke up happy and eager to start the day!  Coffee, a bowl of raisin bran, and he was ‘good to go’.  He rarely complained, and never took life for granted. He lived each day to the fullest.  He heartily embraced every adventure that crossed his path…and many folks he met along the way would ultimately become lifelong friends.  He will be sorely missed.  

Comet took his last flight Sunday, January 13th.  He was 69 years old.  He is preceded in death by his mother and father.  He is survived by his wife, Naomi, sons John and Andy, step daughters Sara and Kim, 3 grandchildren, sister Corrinne Berkland (David), brother Steve (April Rodgers), 3 nephews, and former spouse Tena.

A visitation will be held at Miller Funeral Home, 7400 South Minnesota Ave, Friday from 4-7 PM.  Funeral services will be held Saturday, at First Lutheran Church, 327 South Dakota Avenue, at 11 AM.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations be made to the South Dakota Airshow, Sioux Falls Jazz and Blues, and/or the South Dakota Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Comet served on the boards of these organizations.

http://www.millerfh.com



BRIDGEWATER, South Dakota -- Federal Aviation Administration records indicate that the Sioux Falls attorney who died on January 13th, when his plane crashed in southern McCook County did not have the medical certificate he legally needed to fly.

Comet Haraldson, who was 69 at the time of his death, had flown from Tea to Mitchell earlier that day and was making the return trip when he crashed.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration website that keeps information on pilots’ certifications, Haraldson, who lived in Lincoln County, got a private pilot’s license in January 2007.

According to that same website, Haraldson last updated his medical certification in October 2016. That was a third-class certification which, under the Federal Code of Regulations, expires after 24 months of the date on the medical certificate because Haraldson was over the age of 40.

Pilots are not legally allowed to operate planes if they do not have an up-to-date medical certification or if they have not completed an alternative medical course.

Although some aircraft, such as balloons and gliders, do not require medical certification, operating as a private pilot does.

Representatives from the FAA’s Aerospace Medical Certification Division said they are unsure exactly how long it takes a pilot’s online information to update after a new medical certificate is obtained and refused to comment on the status of Haraldson’s certification. But if the October 2016 certification was Haraldson’s most recent, it would have expired in October 2018, making him unable to legally fly after that point.

An audio recording of air traffic control communication from before Haraldson’s plane crashed on Sunday indicated that he was having a medical issue while in the air. He contacted air traffic controllers at about 2:15 p.m. on Sunday.

In that recording, air traffic controllers can be heard repeatedly suggesting that Haraldson find a road or a field where he could land and they could send emergency personnel to help him.

“If you can safely put the aircraft down at this point in a field, on a road, that’s what we’d recommend, rather than losing consciousness at altitude there,” an air traffic controller said about eight minutes after first making contact with Haraldson.

Soon after that, the controllers lost contact with Haraldson, and the wreckage of his single-engine plane was found later that day.

The National Transportation Safety Board is expected to investigate the crash, but the investigation has been slowed by furloughed workers.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.jamestownsun.com

Comet Haraldson

The pilot killed in a single-engine plane crash in a field Sunday afternoon in McCook County has been identified.

Comet H. Haraldson, 69, of Sioux Falls, was the pilot and lone person on the plane when it crashed Sunday near Bridgewater. Haraldson was flying a plane registered in his name, McCook County Emergency Management Director Brad Stiefvater said Monday.

Haraldson, who was an attorney with nearly 40 years of experience at Woods Fuller Shultz and Smith law firm in Sioux Falls, flew the plane from Tea to Mitchell earlier Sunday, and was flying to return home to Sioux Falls at the time of the crash.

Stiefvater said Sunday that Haraldson had contacted air traffic controllers while in flight around 2:15 p.m. to say he was having health complications and was struggling to control his plane.

About 10 minutes later, air traffic control reported they had lost contact with the plane. The wreckage was later found in the area of 263rd Street and 440th Avenue in the southern part of McCook County, located 1 mile west of U.S. Highway 81.

Because of the partial federal government shutdown, the investigation into the crash will be slow, Stiefvater said. McCook County personnel received permission from the National Transportation Safety Board to preserve the wreckage from the crash site before the NTSB can further investigate. Stiefvater said there’s no timeline on when that investigation will occur because many NTSB employees are on furlough.

“I’m not sure when that will be because of the shutdown, so things are complicated right now,” Stiefvater said Monday.


Original article can be found here ➤ https://mitchellrepublic.com






MCCOOK COUNTY, S.D. (KSFY) - UPDATE:

Authorities have identified the pilot that was killed in a plane crash over the weekend in southeast South Dakota.

McCook County Emergency Management Director Brad Stiefvater confirms Comet Haraldson of Sioux Falls died Sunday afternoon when his single-engine Piper Cherokee aircraft when down in a field between Canistota and Bridgewater.

Authorities said Haraldson had a medical issue prior to the crash.

The sheriff's department has cleared the wreckage, which is being stored in a secure county building due to the government shutdown.

ORIGINAL STORY:

Authorities say a medical condition is likely to blame for a deadly plane crash in southeast South Dakota.

A small single-engine aircraft crashed in a field between Canistota and Bridgewater around 2:15 p.m. Sunday.

McCook County emergency management officials tell KSFY the pilot reported having health issues mid-flight.

Air traffic control audio, recorded on the website LiveATC.net, revealed a nearly half-hour struggle to help the pilot safely land the plane. Controllers advised the pilot to land in on a county road or a field, where first responders would be able to provide assistance.

The pilot ultimately was not able to land safely and crashed into a field.

Air traffic control coordinated a response on the ground with local law enforcement agencies.

"Today, our dispatch center got a call from the air traffic controllers out of Sioux Falls advising that they had a pilot that was calling in an emergency," McCook County Emergency Manager, Brad Stiefvater said.

Stiefvater said they were told the pilot was having health issues.

"He was having medical problems and having trouble controlling the plane as a result of those," Stiefvater

"We tried to reach this individual on the Unicom aircraft frequency from the ground to no avail and then 10 minutes later air traffic control advised that they had lost contact," Stiefvater said.

Shortly after losing contact with the pilot first responders found the crashed plane between Canistota and Bridgewater.

"The NTSB has been contacted and we'll be releasing no more information until the family is notified," Stiefvater said.

Authorities are not saying whether anyone else was on board the plane at the time of the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.ksfy.com

Beechcraft B35 Bonanza, registered to ABCS Association and operated by the pilot, N5093C: Accident occurred January 13, 2019 near Jefferson County International Airport (0S9), Washington

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

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Des Moines, Washington

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

https://registry.faa.gov/N5093C

Location: Port Hadlock, WA
Accident Number: WPR19LA064
Date & Time: 01/13/2019, 1400 PST
Registration: N5093C
Aircraft: Beech 35
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On January 13, 2019, about 1400 Pacific standard time, a Beech B35 airplane, N5093C collided with trees following a loss of engine power near Port Hadlock, Washington, . The commercial pilot received minor injuries. The airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to ABCS Association and operated by the pilot under the provision of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Jefferson County International Airport (0S9), Port Townsend, Washington about 1350 and was destined for Paine Field (PAE), Everett, Washington.

The pilot reported that shortly after takeoff, the cockpit door opened, and that while turning onto left downwind to return to 0S9, the engine lost power. The pilot subsequently initiated an off-airport forced landing. The airplane struck a stand of trees and came to rest behind a church.

The airplane was recovered and secured for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech
Registration: N5093C
Model/Series: 35 B35
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: 0S9, 110 ft msl
Observation Time: 1355 PST
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point: 10°C / 4°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 5 knots / , 230°
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Port Townsend, WA (0S9)
Destination: Everett, WA (PAE)

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: 48.042222, -122.774722 (est)



One male is being treated for minor injuries after a plane he was in crashed just before 2 p.m. Jan. 13 in Port Hadlock-Irondale.

Public Information Officer for East Jefferson Fire and Rescue Bill Beezley said the pilot of a Beechcraft B35 Bonanza was being checked for minor injuries after he crashed at 711 Irondale Road near Irondale Church.

The pilot was the sole occupant of the plane at the time of the crash.

Witness Randy Shepherd said the plane was traveling southwest over the area before it struck one tree causing it to turn northeast and crash into a second tree where it came to rest.

Port Townsend police officer Nathan Holmes said they were waiting for the Federal Aviation Administration to arrive on scene before more information would be given regarding the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.ptleader.com



PORT HADLOCK — A pilot escaped a plane crash near Port Hadlock with minor injuries after his engine died shortly after takeoff Sunday afternoon.

The 87-year-old Snohomish County man, the sole occupant, was transported to Jefferson Healthcare hospital with a minor injury to his hand, according to East Jefferson Fire-Rescue spokesperson Bill Beezley.

The crash was first reported at 1:58 p.m. Sunday near the Irondale Church at 681 Irondale Road.

The pilot, who Beezley did not identify, told responders that shortly after he took off from the Jefferson County International Airport the door on the plane opened.

He then turned around in an effort to make it back to the airport, but the engine died.

“He did a classic pilot maneuver and aimed for a tree with one wing,” Beezley said.

He said that by hitting a tree with one wing, it slows down the plane and increases the chance of survival.

He said another pilot did the same thing last year.

The Beechcraft B35 Bonanza is registered to ABCS Association out of Mukilteo.

Original article ➤ https://www.peninsuladailynews.com

Piper PA-22-160, operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight, N9227D: Fatal accident occurred January 13, 2019 in Kingman, Mohave County, Arizona

Heidi Sue Dowland and Christopher Adam Anderson 


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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Scottsdale, Arizona
Lycoming; Williamsport, Pennsylvania
Piper Aircraft; Vero Beach, Florida

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


https://registry.faa.gov/N9227D

Location: Kingman, AZ
Accident Number: WPR19LA063
Date & Time: 01/13/2019, 1045 MST
Registration: N9227D
Aircraft: Piper PA22
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On January 13, 2019, about 1045 mountain standard time, a Piper PA22-160 airplane, N9227D, was substantially damaged when it impacted mountainous terrain in the Hualapai County Park, Hualapai, Arizona under unknown circumstances. The student pilot received serious injuries, and the owner/non-pilot rated passenger received fatal injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Unknown daylight meteorological conditions existed at the accident site about the time of the accident. No flight plan was filed for the flight, and no records of any pilot pre-flight briefing were discovered. The flight had reportedly originated from Kingman Airport (IGM), Kingman Arizona about 44 minutes prior to the accident.

The accident site was located about 9.5 miles south-southeast of IGM. According to first responders, the pilot reported that the engine had lost power. No additional details were provided, and the pilot has refused to communicate with either NTSB or Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) investigators.

According to the passenger's sister, the passenger had purchased the airplane for the pilot, and the airplane was kept in a rented hangar at Earnest A. Love Field (PRC), Prescott, Arizona. The pilot and passenger flew from PRC to Meadview, Arizona the day before the accident in order to attend a party. The next morning they flew from Meadview to IGM. The sister reported that the airplane was refueled at IGM, and that at 1001 she received a text from the passenger reporting that the two had taken off from IGM. The fueling records at IGM neither confirmed nor contradicted the sister's refueling account.

FAA records indicated that the pilot had been issued a student pilot certificate in January 2014, and was never issued any other certificates. Despite multiple attempts, no pilot training records, flight experience logs, or airplane maintenance records were able to be located by investigators.

FAA records indicated that the airplane was manufactured in 1958, and was equipped with a Lycoming O-320 series engine. The previous owner reported that he sold the airplane to the passenger in late November 2018.

The 1051 IGM automated weather observation included winds from 010° at 4 knots, visibility 10 miles, clear skies, temperature 7° C, dew point -1° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.14 inches of mercury.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N9227D
Model/Series: PA22 160
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
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: , 3448 ft msl
Observation Time: 1051 MST
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 7°C / -1°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots / , 10°
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Kingman, AZ (IGM)
Destination: Glendale, AZ (GEU)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 35.101944, -113.886111 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

Christopher Adam Anderson and Heidi Sue Dowland 
~

Mohave County Sheriff's Office

The Mohave County Sheriff’s Office is continuing an investigation into a plane crash that occurred on January 13, 2019 at approximately 11:45 AM in the Hualapai Mountain Park near Kingman. The plane was occupied by two subjects, a male and female. The female subject, identified as Heidi Sue Dowland, 38 of Prescott Valley, was found deceased on scene. The male subject, identified as Christopher Adam Anderson, 43 of Prescott Valley, was transported to Kingman Regional Medical Center in serious condition. He was later transported to a Las Vegas hospital and is in critical condition. Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board were notified and are conducting the investigation as to the cause of the crash.








Mohave County Sheriff's Office has identified the woman and man involved in a small plane crash in Hualapai Mountain Park near Kingman Sunday.

Heidi Sue Dowland, 38, of Prescott Valley, was found dead at the scene, according to MCSO.

Christopher Adam Anderson, 43, of Prescott Valley, was found in serious condition and taken to Kingman Regional Medical Center. He was later moved to a Las Vegas hospital and is in critical condition, according to an MCSO release.

The plane crashed about 100 yards from the Mohave County Parks Ranger Station. The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are conducting an investigation into the cause of the crash.


Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.azcentral.com