Wednesday, May 01, 2019

Piper PA-18-105 Super Cub, N294T: Incident occurred August 11, 2019 at Francis S. Gabreski Airport (KFOK), Westhampton Beach, Suffolk County, New York -and- Incident occurred May 01, 2019 in New Dorp, Staten Island, New York

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Farmingdale, New York

August 11, 2019: Aircraft landed and nosed over.

Van Wagner Aerial Media LLC

Date: 11-AUG-19
Time: 18:26:00Z
Regis#: N294T
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: PA18
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91

Incident occurred May 01, 2019 in Staten Island, New York:

STATEN ISLAND, New York -- Maybe the pilot of a banner-in-the-sky plane was “insured” a safe emergency landing in inclement weather at Miller Field on May 1st.

The 57-year-old pilot, who had a valid license, was flying a fixed-wing, single-engine plane advertising GEICO insurance, according to a law enforcement source.

The man was flying solo in a Piper PA-18 along the shoreline when weather became too foggy and he needed to make an emergency landing for his own safety around 5:40 p.m., according to information supplied by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the law-enforcement source.

“The pilot said that he made a precautionary landing due to deteriorating weather conditions,” an FAA spokesman said.

The aircraft came to a stop near a softball field by the Greeley Avenue side of the park.

The man safely landed the plane without injuring himself or damaging the aircraft, according to information supplied by the FAA and police.

The large banner that the plane was carrying was draped on the grass.

He was flying for Van Wagner Aerial Media in the aircraft that initially departed from Somerset, N.J., according to sources.

Van Wagner did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The company’s website bills itself as the “airplane advertising leader.”

“Van Wagner Aerial Media offers any marketer or individual the opportunity to showcase their messaging over exciting events, cities and beaches - and everywhere else that people gather to enjoy themselves,” the website says. “We are by far the largest, most innovative and most dependable worldwide participant in the airship and airplane advertising businesses.”

The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate, a spokesman said.

he pilot said that he made a precautionary landing due to deteriorating weather conditions. There was no damage to the aircraft and no injuries to the pilot.The National Transportation Safety Board is not investigating, a spokesman said.

“We investigate all crashes that result in fatalities, serious injuries or significant damage to the airframe," a spokesman said. "If there is not a fatality, it can sometimes take a day or so to determine, with the help of FAA personnel on the ground, whether the crash meets our statutory threshold.”

Video posted to by a user shows the dramatic moment that the plane made the landing Wednesday evening.

The video, posted by user Teknotic, shows the plane descending from the sky not far from a group of children playing at the park.

The plane was towed away from New Dorp on Thursday morning. Shortly after 6 a.m., the partially-dismantled plane was carted away on a flatbed tow truck. The wings were separated from the main body of the plane and secured to the rear of the flatbed. The nose of the plane pointed toward the cab.

The tow truck was escorted by an unmarked car with emergency lights flashing through the fog as the vehicles headed up New Dorp Lane and then made a left onto Hylan Boulevard.

People waiting for buses along Hylan stared in amazement at the unusual sight of an airplane traveling on a tow truck.

The owner of the aircraft made arrangements to have it moved by truck to New Jersey from Miller Field, a spokesman for the FAA said.

Original article can be found here ➤

STATEN ISLAND, New York - A plane made an emergency landing at Miller Field in New Dorp Wednesday evening, shocking coaches and youngsters who were minutes away from playing games.

The plane was having some sort of mechanical issues which forced the landing, emergency radio transmissions indicate.

There are no injuries reported at this time.

The landing occurred just after 5:30 p.m., as youth soccer teams were starting to arrive for their evening games.

Witnesses told the Advance there was a coach and just a small number of players on the side of the field where the plane landed.

It came to a stop near a softball field by the Greeley Avenue side of the park.

“It came from the water,” said John Consalvo of New Springville. "He was flying 30 feet in the air and dropped his banner.”

The plane went by New Dorp High School, “and all of a sudden he was coming down like he was landing,” Consalvo said. “We pulled the kids off the field."

The plane landed in the middle of the field and rolled, said another witness, Nick, a Great Kills resident.

“We were at the soccer field and it just came over,” said Nick. "Everyone was looking at it and we were like ‘wow, this is really low.' "

“We just kind of ducked," he said. "He put it down in the grass. It was probably smart. He could have lost the plane and possibly his life.”

Witnesses told the Advance the plane rolled a couple of hundred feet before coming to a stop.

Fortunately, the landing occurred just before the games were about to start -- meaning the field was less crowded than it could have been.

“If he was 15 minutes later, there would have been a real problem,” said Baheer. “There was no one here.”

Original article can be found here ➤

Cessna 182P Skylane, registered to and operated by Air Carriage Inc under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight, N7302S: Fatal accident occurred May 01, 2019 in Mill Creek, Tehama County, California

Dr. Lowell Glenn Daun

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Sacramento, California
Textron Aviation (Cessna); Wichita, Kansas
Continental Aerospace Technologies; Mobile, Alabama

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Mill Creek, CA
Accident Number: WPR19FA126
Date & Time: 05/01/2019, 1100 PDT
Registration: N7302S
Aircraft: Cessna 182
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 01, 2019, about 1100 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna T182P airplane, N7302S, experienced a loss of engine power and collided with a power line while making an emergency landing to a grassy marsh in Mill Creek, California. The flight instructor and front-seated passenger sustained serious injuries; the rear-seated pilot-rated passenger was fatally injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to and operated by Air Carriage, Inc. under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed. The flight originated from Chino Airport, Chino, California, about 1010.

The pilot stated that the purpose of the flight was to fly around Mount Shasta. Following departure, he maneuvered the airplane toward Mount Shasta and climbed to about 11,000-11,500 ft mean sea level (msl). The airplane approached the west side of the mountain and the pilot began to maneuver in a right turn with the intention of making a 360° tour. As soon as the airplane transitioned over to the east side of Mount Shasta, he heard a muffled "boom" from the engine compartment immediately followed by a puff of white vapor and a partial loss of engine power (the rear-seated passenger took a photograph several minutes before the engine failure shown below in Picture 1). Thereafter, black smoke began to enter the cockpit consistent with the smell of burnt oil. The pilot trimmed the airplane for the best glide-speed and the airplane began to descend rapidly at an estimated 1,000 ft per minute. While looking for a suitable place to make an off-airport landing, he briefly attempted to troubleshoot the engine problem and noted that when he retarded the throttle control there was a slight reduction in power, which gave him an indication that at least one piston continued to operate. He immediately advanced the throttle fully forward to arrest the descent as much as possible.

Picture 1: Airplane Position Several Minutes Prior to Engine Failure

After rejecting his first selected snow field, the pilot turned the airplane toward a grassy meadow aiming to have enough altitude to clear the treetops. He planned to flare the airplane immediately after clearing the four-foot fence that stretched northwest-southeast across the field. After the airplane passed over the treetops, he extended the flaps and continued toward the fence. The pilot suddenly saw powerlines immediately ahead and attempted to maneuver the airplane in a dive to fly underneath them. The airplane contacted the wires and spun from the impact, coming to rest inverted.

The accident site was located in marshy terrain about 37.5 nautical miles from the destination airport. In character, the terrain was composed of soft, wet grassy marsh. The wreckage was found distributed over a 565-foot distance on a median magnetic bearing of about 230°. There were powerlines, two parallel wires about 20 ft in height, stretched across the field oriented east-west. There were several fence structures, about 4 ft in height, two of which bordered the debris field; one fence located on the south end of the debris field was oriented east-west and the other oriented northwest-southeast was between the wires and the main wreckage (see below Picture 2).

Picture 2: Accident Location Showing the Debris Field

The fuselage came to rest inverted at the end of the debris field. There was an oil sheen on the entire belly of the fuselage and lower surface of the horizontal stabilizer and elevator control surfaces (see below Picture 3). The left wing strut was separated and the lower left cowling contained a rub mark, both were consistent with contact with a wire. Found within the debris field were pieces of an engine connecting rod and parts of a piston.

Picture 3: Bottom of Fuselage with Oil Sheen

An external examination of the engine revealed oil staining on the firewall. There was a hole in the bottom of the case adjacent to the No. 3 cylinder and the push rods were loose. There was additionally a hole in the upper case near the No. 4 cylinder. The internal engine components were examined by using a lighted borescope through the hole in the crankcase. The oil sump contained a small amount of visible oil and numerous pieces of the internal components were at the bottom including pieces of pistons and connecting rods.

The engine was equipped with an F&M Enterprises Inc. engine oil filter adapter, model C6LC-S. The purpose of the adapter was to enable the engine to use a conventional spin-on oil filter. As manufactured, the oil pump has a brass oil screen mounted to the casing and the filter adapter uses the oil screen bore to attach to the engine. The post accident examination revealed that the filter adapter was loose, and the adapter housing could be rotated about the shaft (see below Picture 4). Investigators removed the safety wire and attempted to assess the breakaway torque of the adapter which was required to be 65 foot-pounds (ft/lbs). The torque was less than 20 ft/lbs, which was the force set on the torque wrench.

Picture 4: Oil Filter Adapter

A closer examination of the filter adapter revealed that the fiber gasket, located between the oil pump casting and the adapter housing was protruding with the outside edge extending beyond the castings (see below Picture 5). Additionally, a tear could be seen in the gasket where the adapter housing abutted the engine case. Removal of the adapter revealed that the fiber gasket was completely split The copper crush gasket was intact. The oil filter was removed and cut open; there were several small metal flakes, but otherwise the pleats were clean from debris.

Picture 5: Oil Filter Adapter Fiber Gasket

The engine and oil filter adapter were shipped to the engine manufacturer for further examination.  

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N7302S
Model/Series: 182 P
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Air Carriage Inc
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KRDD, 497 ft msl
Observation Time: 1053 PDT
Distance from Accident Site: 37 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 25°C / -3°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots / , Variable
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.4 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Chico, CA (CIC)
Destination: Chico, CA (CIC) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 40.360000, -121.510556

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 

Lowell Glenn Daun

A private celebration of life will be held for Lowell Glenn Daun, 72 of Chico. 

He passed away on Wednesday, May 1 2019 as the result of a plane crash in Childs Meadows near Mineral, CA.

Lowell was born on January 9, 1947 in Redlands, CA, a third generation Californian.

He is survived by his wife, Dorothy of Chico; four daughters, six grandchildren, two sisters and one brother in law.

Donations may be made in his memory to the National Military Families Association.

A Chico man was killed when a small plane crashed Wednesday near Mineral at Child's Meadows, and two others remain in critical condition, reports the Tehama County Sheriff's Office.

It appears the plane was circling the area on Highway 36W near Highway 172 before crashing around 11:02 a.m.

Killed was 72-year-old Lowell Daun, who was a passenger in the 1976 182P Cessna owned by Air Carriage, Inc.,out the Chico Municipal Airport, said Tehama County sheriff's Det. Robert Bakken.

The names of a second passenger and the pilot, a male and a female, said Bakken, has not been released by the sheriff's office as matter of privacy.

Both were transported by air ambulance to an area hospital.

According to the sheriff's office, the office received a report from Oakland AiTraffic Control that the plane had suffered total engine failure.

CalFire, the sheriff's office and CalTrans responded to the report and located the crashed aircraft in piece at Child's Meadow.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident.

Original article ➤

RED BLUFF, California — At least one person killed in a plane crash in the Childs Meadow vicinity involving a Cessna carrying three persons.

A report was received about 11 a.m. Wednesday from Oakland Air Traffic Control of a Cessna with engine trouble west of Mineral and possibly about 39 miles northeast of Red Bluff, according to scanner traffic. At 12:30 p.m., the Tehama County Sheriff’s Department coroner’s unit was requested.

Initial reports around 11:36 a.m. indicated the plane was found with a missing wing and no persons seen near it in the area of State Route 36E and State Route 172 near Childs Meadows. The Susanville Fire Department was cited as the source for that information.

A medic was requested at 11:38 a.m. and power lines were reported down across 172 near the intersection with 36E at 11:44 a.m.

A Susanville California Highway Patrol unit reported there were three people in the plane and two were injured, but talking. There was no response regarding the status of the third individual.

Caltrans closed 172 at 36E. Nothing further was available as of 1 p.m. Wednesday.

Original article ➤

UPDATE 3:07 p.m. May 1, 2019 - Caltrans District 2 said Highway 172 is now open at the Highway 36 junction after a plane experiencing total engine failure crash-landed in Child's Meadows. 

UPDATE 2:28 p.m. May 1, 2019 - The Tehama County Sheriff's Office has confirmed that one person died and two others were critically injured in the plane crash. 

Authorities received a call from Oakland Air Traffic Control around 11:02 a.m. in regards to a plane experiencing total engine failure in the area of Highway 36 and Highway 172. They advised authorities that the plane was going down. 

The Tehama County Sheriff's Office could not confirm where the plane was coming from and where it was going. 

TEHAMA COUNTY, Calif. - Caltrans District 2 said there are traffic delays on SR 36 east of the junction with SR 172 due to a downed aircraft. 

CAL FIRE first got reports of the downed aircraft around 11:16 a.m. and have sent crews out to the scene. 

Original article ➤

Cessna 172N Skyhawk, operated by PsyFliers Club Inc under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight, N733KZ: Fatal accident occurred May 01, 2019 in Tyrone, Blair County, Pennsylvania

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

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; New Cumberland, Pennsylvania
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: 

Location: Tyrone, PA
Accident Number: ERA19FA161
Date & Time: 05/01/2019, 1251 EDT
Registration: N733KZ
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 1, 2019, about 1251 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172N, N733KZ, was destroyed when it impacted mountainous terrain while maneuvering near Tyrone, Pennsylvania. The commercial pilot and one passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was being operated by PsyFliers Club, Inc. under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, as a personal flight. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed in the area at the time for the visual flight rules (VFR) flight that originated from University Park Airport (UNV), State College, Pennsylvania about 1240, destined for the Pittsburgh/Butler Regional Airport (BTP), Butler, Pennsylvania.

According to preliminary air traffic control information obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the pilot filed an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan; however, he elected depart VFR and asked the UNV air traffic controller to cancel the IFR flight plan. The pilot was cleared for takeoff from runway 24, was provided the updated altimeter setting and told to advise when leaving the class D airspace; however, there were no subsequent communications from the pilot.

According to preliminary ADS-B radar track data of transponder 1200 codes, the airplane departed and remained on runway heading for about 4.5 nautical miles (nm) while climbing to 2,500 ft mean sea level (msl). The flight track turned slightly right to a west-southwest heading, descended to about 2,000 ft msl, and remained on that heading and altitude for about 10 nm. The flight then turned to the same heading initially flown after takeoff, descended slightly then climbed to about 2,000 ft msl over about 3 nm. The radar data indicated that the airplane began a right turn before radar track data was lost. The last radar target at 1251:02, indicated the airplane was at about 2,050 feet msl, about 0.11 mile southeast of the accident site.

A witness who was outside about 1/2 mile east-southeast from the accident site reported it was very foggy but not raining. She heard a loud sounding airplane which got her attention. She then observed the airplane west of her position flying low and "straight" below the fog in a westerly direction "way above a nearby 45 ft tall tree." The airplane banked to the right ("not too steep"), then she lost sight of the airplane when it went behind trees. She then heard the sound of an explosion and called 911 to report the accident.

The airplane impacted heavily wooded terrain near the top of a ridgeline that was at elevation about 2,275 ft msl about 17 miles west-southwest of UNV. The wreckage was highly fragmented and partially consumed by a postcrash fire.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N733KZ
Model/Series: 172 N
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Instrument Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: UNV, 1231 ft msl
Observation Time: 1253 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 17 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 11°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots / , 190°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 1200 ft agl
Visibility:  7 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.27 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: State College, PA (UNV)
Destination: Butler, PA (BTP)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 40.764444, -78.211111

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 

Dr. Joseph T. and Valerie Diane Bernardo

Dr. Joseph T. Bernardo, often called “J.” by many of his colleagues, and his wife Valerie Diane Bernardo perished in an airplane accident on May 1st, 2019.

Joe was born on March 5, 1964, in Lodi, New Jersey, the son of Joseph and Ruth (Niosi) Bernardo, who are both surviving at their home in Andover, New Jersey. Joe earned his Ph.D. from Penn State in IST. He was employed at Penn State for 9 years, where he was a Senior Research Engineer at the Applied Research Lab. Joe loved flying and was a member of the Psyfliers Club.

Valerie was born on January 7, 1965, in Butler, Pennsylvania, the daughter of the late John King and Peggy (Yori) King, who survives at her home in Chicora. Valerie also attended Penn State, where she earned her Master’s degree in nutrition and was a Registered Dietitian for 28 years. She loved to spend time outdoors, gardening. Above all, Valerie proudly devoted her life to taking care of her family and home.

On May 18, 1986, in Rimersburg, Joe and Valerie were united in marriage. The two shared 32 blissful years of marriage together, while lovingly raising their two children.

In addition to Joe’s parents and Valerie’s mother, the couple is survived by their two children, Bethany and Justin Bernardo, both of State College. Also surviving are Joe’s sister Karen Bernardo of New Jersey, Valerie’s sister Sheryl Schmader, niece Madison, nephew Nicholas, all of California, and brother Alan King and spouse Mathew Alexander of New Mexico.

Joe and Valerie were devoted members of Park Forest Baptist Church in State College.

Friends will be received on Tuesday, May 7, 2019, from 5-8 pm at Park Forest Baptist Church at 3030 Carnegie Drive, State College. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, May 8, 2019, at 10 am at the church, with Rev. Jeremy Field officiating. Burial will immediately follow at Boalsburg Cemetery, where Joe and Valerie will be laid to rest, side by side, just as they lived.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Joe and Valerie’s memory to The Door Student Services, Pioneers Japan: Hiroshima Team, or Pregnancy Resource Clinic.

Taylor Township, Centre County, Pennsylvania - WTAJ has gathered new details related to a plane that crashed Wednesday afternoon in the mountains of Taylor Township, Centre County.

The crash killed both the plane's pilot and passenger... who were identified Thursday evening by the Centre County Coroner's office.

The pilot: 55-year-old Joseph T. Bernardo of State College.

The passenger: 54-year-old Valerie Bernardo of State College.

The two were husband and wife.

It's now known that Bernardo took off from the University Park Airport in State College.

However, different sources conflict in stating where the plane was headed. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says the plane was headed for Burlington, Vermont. But, reports that the plane was headed to the Butler County Airport. According to a flight path provided by, the plane appeared to be headed south and west toward the Butler County Airport.

WTAJ gathered audio recordings of air traffic control's contact with the plane before it took off.

Note: At this time, it's unknown who is speaking during each radio transmission (it could be the pilot or air traffic control). Also, IFR (referenced below) stands for instrument flight rules... this is different than VFR- visual flight rules.

A transcription of the radio transmissions is below.

"733 University you want your IFR... "

"Do you want me to remove that strip or leave it open?"

"Your IFR flight plan is good."

"733 Kilo 0 University Tower runway... good for takeoff"

Then about 11 seconds later... this is heard

"Quiet out there"

"Pilots do get nervous"

At the moment, WTAJ is not certain of the context of "Pilots do get nervous".

Was this just a side comment by air traffic control, perhaps referencing the notion that the pilot didn't respond to being cleared for takeoff?

Or did the pilot say this indicating he was actually nervous?

Why was this stated in a radio trasmission?

University Park Airport has not commented on questions related to the trasmissions as the plane crash is still under investigation.

It is known that the plane was owned by a State College flying club called: Pysfliers.

According to, the plane was taken out on at least 5 flights last month... including one flight that lasted just under an hour, on the day before the crash.

All flights listed for the plane before the crash took-off and landed at the University Park Airport.

Story and video ➤

Yesterday at 1300 hours the Columbia Fire Company was alerted to assist the Mountain Top Fire Company with a Level 1 Aircraft Crash near the 4200 block of Tyrone Pike, Rush Township Centre County. 

Engine 22-2, Tanker 22 and Brush Tanker 22 all responded on the alarm. 

The original staging area was at the truck pull off at the top of the Sandy Ridge Mountain. 

Centre County Dispatch Advised the original caller resided on the 3500 block of S Mountain Rd in Taylor Township.

Command had Engine 22-2 go to their address and speak with them to obtain further information. 

Prior to arriving there the engine crew could see a wing from the aircraft in the tree tops on the mountain top. 

Lieutenant 22 gave coordinates of the predicted crash site area and all units redirected to that location.

Lieutenant 22, Chief 13-4, Captain 12-1 and EMS started the hike up the hillside. 

After almost an hour of climbing the crew arrived at the crash site. 

The plane was extinguished with water cans from Engine 22-2. 

Sadly, there were no survivors from the crash. 

After several hours, all units cleared the scene and the call was turned over to the FAA and NTSB. 

The aircraft was a Cessna 172N Skyhawk from the State College area. 

We send our condolences to the families and friends of the deceased. Any further questions can be directed to those two agencies.
Columbia Fire Company

The two people killed in Wednesday's plane crash in Rush Township were a married State College couple, Centre County Chief Deputy Coroner Judith Pleskonko said in a news release on Thursday night.

Joseph T. Bernardo, 55, was the pilot of the single-engine plane and his wife, 54-year-old Valerie D. Bernardo, was the passenger. Both were pronounced dead at the scene after the Cessna 172 crashed into the Sandy Ridge Mountain summit just before 1 p.m.

Autopsies were performed on Thursday but results are pending.

Joseph Bernardo was an employee in Penn State's Applied Research Lab.

"On behalf of Penn State, we extend our heartfelt condolences to friends and family of Joseph Bernardo during this time of tremendous sorrow," Penn State spokeswoman Lisa Powers said.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the plane departed from University Park Airport. A C172 that departed at 12:41 p.m. was listed as being registered to State College-based flying club Psyfliers.

Emergency responders were dispatched when a caller reported seeing a low-flying plane crash near the top of Sandy Ridge Mountain, as well as hearing an explosion.

Mountain Top Fire Company was first on the scene and commanded the response, joined by multiple fire and EMS companies from Centre, Clearfield and Blair counties, as well as state police. Crews worked in the heavily wooded area throughout the afternoon and into Wednesday night.

The FAA is investigating and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine a probable cause of the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤

A Cessna C172 aircraft crashed into the side of Sandy Ridge Mountain in Taylor Township around 1 p.m. Wednesday, the Federal Aviation Administration confirmed.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane took off from University Park Airport.

Daniel Christine Jr. said his parents, Kay and Daniel Christine Sr., were the ones who heard the plane crash from their home on Mountain Road and called 911. 

“My parents heard a plane that sounded like it was having issues, then heard it crash into the mountain with a loud bang,” he said.

Because of the heavy fog that afternoon, Christine Jr. said his parents mostly heard, rather than saw the crash.

Christine Jr. and his father then helped lead state troopers up the dirt road to get to the crash site, where he said they could see flames and debris.

The Centre County deputy coroner was called to the scene, but the number of fatalities has not yet been confirmed.

The area in which the plane crashed was heavily wooded, and rescue crews needed to use all-terrain vehicles to reach the site, firefighters on the scene confirmed. They also used a drone to help pinpoint the location.

Mountain Top Fire Company assumed command, while Columbia, Bald Eagle, Neptune, Philipsburg and Port Matilda also responded, along with state police and EMS.

State police said the investigation has been handed over to the FAA, which will determine the cause of the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤

PsyFliers —
July 30, 2018 

We're currently 11 members sharing use of a 1977 Cessna 172N. The aircraft is meticulously maintained by Gullwing Aviation at Mifflin Airport. It has recent avionics - including an IFR-certified, WAAS (precisie) GPS with moving map, an ADS-B out transponder that provides in-flight weather and traffic information and connects to pilot's electric flight bag devices (e.g., iPads). As of summer 2018, we are equipped with a new Garmin autopilot and Garmin glass-panel instruments. The aircraft itself has an upgraded engine from the stock C172N, increasing useful capacity by 100lbs. The engine is very regularly monitored via oil and oil filter analyses, compression checks, and annual inspections.  Scheduling works via a website and is quite flexible. We are financially responsible and careful, we have savings to account for future maintenance, and members are insured to fly.  Most importantly, we're fun and friendly!

SANDY RIDGE, Pennsylvania — 

UPDATE 3: The Federal Aviation Administration has released the following statement:

A Cessna C172 aircraft crashed in the vicinity of Sandy Ridge Mountain in Rush Township, Pennsylvania,  about 1 p.m. today. The aircraft took off from University Park Airport in State College, Pennsylvania.  Check with local authorities for information about the condition of the two people on board. The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause of the accident.

UPDATE 2: Officials say a resident witnessed a low flying plane descending over an area made up of mostly state game land.

The Mountaintop Fire Chief Timothy Sharpless says the resident thought they heard an explosion moments after seeing the plane.

Numerous fire and rescue crews throughout the area responded to the scene.

The Centre County coroner arrived after crews located the plane and was taken to the scene.

the mountaintop fire chief says getting to the scene was a struggle.

“A resident saw a low flying plane, heard what they thought to be an explosion,” Sharpless says. “We were hampered by heavy fog so we weren’t sure if what they were seeing was smoke or fog which hampered any real surveillance to try to locate.”

Sharpless says he suspects there were multiple fatalities.

The Centre County EMA says the investigation has been handed over to the FAA, they will investigate to determine the cause of the crash.

UPDATE 1: Fire officials say the plane has been found. A 6 News crew near the location says the Centre County coroner is on scene.

ORIGINAL STORY: Crews are searching for the scene of a possible single engine plane crash in Centre County, according to the Columbia Fire Company.

According to officials, the reported crash happened Wednesday afternoon in the area of Sandy Ridge.

Original article can be found here ➤

CENTRE COUNTY, Pennsylvania -- The Coroner has been called to the scene of a plane crash in Centre County.

Officials have confirmed that at least one person is dead near Taylor Township.

State Police in Rockview began searching for the small plane between Sandy Ridge and the Bald Eagle area around 1 p.m.

Story and video ➤