Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Loss of Control on Ground: de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver, N67667; fatal accident occurred May 20, 2019 in Metlakatla, Alaska

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board 

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Juneau, Alaska
Taquan Air; Ketchikan, Alaska 

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: 


Location: Metlakatla, Alaska 
Accident Number: ANC19FA019
Date & Time: May 20, 2019, 15:56 Local 
Registration: N67667
Aircraft: De Havilland DHC 2
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground 
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 135: Air taxi & commuter - Scheduled

On May 20, 2019, about 1556 Alaska daylight time, a float-equipped de Havilland DHC-2 (Beaver) airplane, N67667, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Metlakatla, Alaska. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 135 commuter flight.

According to company dispatch documents, the flight was a scheduled commuter flight with one passenger and cargo onboard, which originated from Ketchikan Harbor Seaplane Base (5KE), Ketchikan, Alaska, and was destined for Metlakatla Seaplane Base (MTM), Metlakatla, Alaska, about 16 miles southeast.

A review of GPS track data revealed that the airplane departed 5KE about 1543 and traveled southeast over an area known as the Tongass Narrows, then south to Metlakatla Harbor at an altitude of about 800 ft. The airplane made a right turn to a 240° (magnetic) heading in the southern portion of the harbor then the data ended. (See figure 1.)


There were three witnesses to the airplane’s approach and landing. One of the witnesses, who was taking photographs near the pier, reported that the wind appeared to be pushing the airplane right during touchdown and that the airplane was drifting right as the floats contacted the water. After the airplane skipped once or twice, the left wing “dipped” down, then the right wing “dipped down and dug into the water,” which resulted in the airplane nosing over and the right wing separating.

Another witness, who was in a boat, stated that the airplane hit the water hard and he saw the right float “dig into the water” before the airplane turned over as it pivoted around. The third witness stated that the airplane appeared to be “teetering back and forth” and a gust of wind appeared to push the tail upward as the right wing dropped down and the airplane nosed over. She stated that the wind was from the southeast with gusts of 13 mph and the water was less than choppy. The inverted airplane partially sank with the front fuselage and cockpit under water. (See figures 2 and 3.)


Two boats in the area immediately responded, followed by a Metlakatla Police vessel with volunteer emergency medical technicians onboard. According to statements provided by the first responders, there were numerous boxes, mail, debris, and ATV tires obscuring their view and inhibiting access to the cockpit. After some debris was removed through the left cargo door, the passenger in the front right seat was removed after her shoulder harness was cut; the pilot was removed from the cockpit about 20 minutes later.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Private 
Age: 51,Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Single-engine sea
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: Class 2 With waivers/limitations 
Last FAA Medical Exam: January 21, 2019
Occupational Pilot: Yes 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: May 3, 2019
Flight Time: (Estimated) 1623 hours (Total, all aircraft), 20 hours (Total, this make and model), 1532 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 26 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 20 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Passenger Information

Certificate: Age: Female
Airplane Rating(s): 
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): 
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): 
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): 
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: 
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:

According to the operator's training records, the pilot was hired with 1,606 total hours of flight experience, including 5 hours of previous seaplane experience and no experience in Alaska. He began initial company training on April 22, 2019 and completed a competency check flight in a float-equipped DHC-2 on May 3, 2019, after completing 4 flights and 5.4 training hours. The pilot completed initial operating experience (IOE) flight requirements on May 11, 2019, with 6.9 hours of experience and 11 landings, which allowed him to be assigned to commuter flights in accordance with 14 CFR 135.244. His last IOE flight was to MTM. At the time of the accident, the pilot had accumulated about 22 hours in the accident airplane make and model. He flew 6.5 hours as pilot-in-command (PIC) on tour flights in the weeks before the accident flight.

A review of the pilot’s personal flight logbook revealed that, before flying for the operator, he gained most of his flight experience as a Cessna 208 and Cessna 182 pilot in skydiving operations.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: De Havilland 
Registration: N67667
Model/Series: DHC 2
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1959 
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal 
Serial Number: 1309
Landing Gear Type: Float
Seats: 8
Date/Type of Last Inspection: April 16, 2019 100 hour 
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 5600 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: Engines: 1
Airframe Total Time: 29575 Hrs as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer:
ELT: C126 installed, not activated 
Engine Model/Series:
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power:
Operator:
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Commuter air carrier (135), On-demand air taxi (135), Commercial air tour (136)
Operator Does Business As: Taquan Air
Operator Designator Code: TQ0A

The airplane was equipped with Edo model 679-4930 floats.

The airplane was configured with two Chelton Integrated Display Units (IDU) that operated as a primary flight display (PFD) and a multi-function display (MFD). The PFD displayed aircraft parameter data, including altitude, airspeed, vertical speed, and heading. The MFD displayed navigational information on a moving map, including wind information in the upper left corner, as shown in Figure 4.
During normal system operation, wind was calculated during periods of relatively wings-level flight (bank < 6°). The wind calculation considered true airspeed, heading, ground speed, and track information.

                                                                                                                
Company dispatch documents for the accident flight indicated that the airplane's takeoff weight was 4,915 lbs and center of gravity was -1.6 inches, which were within operating limitations.
  
The Viking DHC-2 Flight Manual states that the maximum crosswind component for takeoff and landing is 10 mph. It does not stipulate a maximum tailwind component, but company pilots stated that 10 mph is generally accepted as the limit.
  
Meteorological Information and Flight Plan
  
Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC)
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PANT,109 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 6 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 23:53 Local 
Direction from Accident Site: 183°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear 
Visibility 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  /
Wind Direction: 160° 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 29.7 inches Hg 
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 9°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Ketchikan, AK (5KE) 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Company VFR
Destination: Metlakatla, AK (MTM) 
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 15:40 Local 
Type of Airspace: Class G
  
Calculated wind velocity from the one of the airplane’s IDUs indicated that the wind during takeoff was from 090° (magnetic) at 15 knots. As the airplane climbed through an indicated altitude of 750 ft, the wind shifted to 290° at 9 knots and remained from the west throughout the en route portion of the flight and the initial segment of the visual approach to the destination. As the airplane descended and turned onto its final approach path of about 242°, the wind shifted from 253° at 6 knots, becoming southerly at 2 knots, then from 083° at 8 knots over the 30 seconds before the airplane landed. This was a shift of 170° and 14 knots, which resulted in a change from a 6-knot headwind to a 7-knot tailwind, and a 2-knot right crosswind to a 3-knot left crosswind component during the approach and landing sequence. According to the manufacturer’s operating handbook, the values can contain errors and wind peaks and gusts are not calculated.
  
Company pilots stated that the winds at MTM can be challenging and unpredictable due to the effects of the surrounding high terrain. Company check airmen stated that MTM is known for downdrafts on the water when the wind is from the east and southeast, where the highest mountains are located.

Airport Information
  
Airport: Metlakatla MTM 
Runway Surface Type: Water
Airport Elevation: 0 ft msl
Runway Surface
Condition: Water-choppy; Wet
Runway Used: W 
 IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5000 ft / 5000 ft 
VFR Approach/Landing: Straight-in
  
The automatic surface observing system (ASOS) for MTM was not reporting information at the time of the accident.
  
No windsock was evident at MTM during the investigation, although it was listed in the Alaska chart supplement.
  
Wreckage and Impact Information
  
Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal 
Latitude, Longitude: 55.131668,-131.57055(est)
  
The airplane came to rest inverted on an easterly heading with the right wing separated and floating about 15 ft to the west. First responders stated that the passenger’s front right seat was removed to facilitate rescue and subsequently sank in the bay. A postaccident examination of the airframe revealed that all other major components were attached. The floats, float struts, spreader bars, and control cables were intact. The right and left sea rudders were each fractured at the lower welds and exhibited minor bending deformation. (See figure 5.)


The right wing forward fuselage attachment lug was fractured and exhibited dull, dimpled fracture surfaces; the rear attachment was fractured and deformed rearward. The right flap was attached to the fuselage by the inboard bracket, with the control rod fractured. An indentation on the right side of the fuselage was consistent with the right flap in the land position during impact. The left wing, aileron and flap were intact and attached. The left flap was extended to the land position. The cockpit flap position indicator was slightly above the land position. Flight control continuity was established from the pilot’s control wheel to the left aileron and right wing aileron pulley and the elevator. Rudder and elevator trim cable continuity was established to the aft trim tabs; however, the trim cables could not be moved due to airframe deformation and cable constriction forward of the cockpit upper trim wheels.
  
The forward fuselage above the cockpit was fractured at the upper center windshield brace, and the forward upper skin was deformed inward and downward into the left side of the cockpit. The left forward door (pilot’s) was secure in place with minor deformation. The right forward door was secure in place with mild deformation and the door opening mechanism worked properly. The right cabin door was open and attached partially by the forward lower attachment. The opening mechanism worked properly. Exit placards were in place.
The aft fuselage and empennage exhibited crushing deformation around the circumference, consistent with rescue efforts and recovery damage noted in photographs. The elevator and rudder were attached and exhibited full control movement.
  
The propeller was attached to the engine and the engine exhibited no damage. Full engine control continuity was observed. The propeller was rotated by hand and engine crank case continuity was established. The three propeller blades were secure in the hub and only one blade exhibited mild aft bending throughout the span and scrapes in various directions.
  
There were no pre-impact anomalies discovered during the airframe and engine examination that would have resulted in a loss of control during landing.
  
Additional Information
  
The FAA Seaplane, Skiplane, and Float/Ski Equipped Helicopter Operations Handbook, FAA-8083-23, states in Chapter 6 that:
  
In water landings, the major objectives are to touch down at the lowest speed possible, in the correct pitch attitude, without side drift, and with full control throughout the approach, landing, and transition to taxiing. Make normal landings directly into the wind. The greater the speed difference between the seaplane and the water, the greater the drag at touchdown, and the greater the tendency for the nose to pitch down. This is why the touchdown is made at the lowest possible speed for the conditions.
  
If the seaplane touches down while drifting sideways, the sudden resistance as the floats contact the water creates a skidding force that tends to push the downwind float deeper into the water. The combination of the skidding force, wind, and weathervaning as the seaplane slows down can lead to a loss of directional control and a waterloop. If the downwind float submerges and the wingtip contacts the water when the seaplane is moving at a significant speed, the seaplane could flip over. See figure 6.3. (Figure 6.)

  
While a landplane pilot seldom thinks about the additional force placed on the landing gear by a higher groundspeed at touchdown, it is a serious concern for the seaplane pilot. A small increase in water speed translates into greatly increased water drag as the seaplane touches down, increasing the tendency of the seaplane to nose over. In light winds, this usually presents little problem if the pilot is familiar with how the seaplane handles when touching down at higher speeds and is anticipating the increased drag forces. In higher winds, the nose-down force may exceed the ability of the pilot or the flight controls to compensate, and the seaplane will flip over at high speed.
  
Organizational and Management Information
  
Taquan Air is a 14 CFR Part 135 air carrier that holds on-demand and commuter operations specifications. The company operated 14 airplanes, of which 10 were DHC-2 Beavers, and employed about 23 pilots, with most working on a seasonal basis, and 4 check airmen. The company conducted tour flights, lodge support flights, scheduled commuter flights, and charter flights.
  
The chief pilot (CP) was responsible for hiring and training pilots. He stated that, each season, pilots were hired to fulfill the summer tour and lodge flights; however, attracting new pilots had become very difficult due to a pilot shortage in Alaska. The company usually hired people with a minimum of 100 hours of seaplane time. He hired the accident pilot, because he had a good attitude and was willing to learn, even though he had very few hours and no operational experience in seaplanes.
  
The company training program for initial hire pilots included practice and evaluation of crosswind landings. Company check airmen stated that tailwind landings were not taught or practiced, because pilots were not expected to perform tailwind landings due to elevated risks of touchdown at greater ground speed.
  
The CP stated that new seasonal pilots were typically assigned to tour flights for 4 to 6 weeks after training. Tour flights were released in groups of multiple airplanes in good weather, and new pilots did not have to make many decisions. Usually by mid-June, pilots were assigned to commuter flights that were easy routes (such as MTM) and then progressed to more challenging destinations at the CP’s discretion. He stated that information about which pilot was ready for a specific type of flight was communicated through “tribal knowledge.” There were no formal meetings with check airmen or flight coordinators. The company station manager and senior flight coordinator (FC) stated that they assigned pilots based on a qualification list that was posted in the flight coordinator’s office, but no list was provided to them for the current year. The station manager, who supervised the flight coordinators, stated that she understood that once a pilot completed IOE, he could be assigned to commuter flights, which conflicted with the CP’s policy.

The company used a flight risk assessment (FRA) process that required the FC on duty to tabulate a risk number based on weather, equipment, landing area, and manpower assessments. Both the pilot and the FC were required to sign the FRA, and if the value was in the caution area, management had to be notified. The FRA for the accident flight indicated a total of 12, which was in the caution area, based on factors such as the pilot having less than 500 hours of flight experience in the airplane type, less than 1 year with the company, the pilot's lack of familiarity with the area, and distraction. The flight coordinator on duty, who was also the company’s senior flight coordinator, did not notify the CP because he previously approved a tour flight with the same value for the accident pilot earlier that day under the same conditions, although the type of flight was different.
                                                                                                                
The company General Operating manual (GOM) indicated that the director of operations routinely delegated the duty of operational control to the FC on duty. Operational control is defined as “the exercise of authority over initiation, conducting, and terminating a flight.”
                                                                                                                
The CP stated that the company usually had an all-pilot pre-season safety meeting each year, but they had not scheduled one this year yet. He also stated that important information was disseminated to pilots through an all-read board posted in the pilot ready room, yet the posted all read board did not have the new seasonal pilots listed.   



Location: Metlakatla, AK
Accident Number: ANC19FA019
Date & Time: 05/20/2019, 1556 AKD
Registration: N67667
Aircraft: De Havilland DHC 2
Injuries: 2 Fatal 
Flight Conducted Under: Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter - Scheduled 

On May 20, 2019, about 1556 Alaska daylight time, a float-equipped de Havilland DHC-2 (Beaver) airplane, N67667, overturned and partially sank during a landing in Metlakatla Harbor, Metlakatla, Alaska. The commercial pilot and passenger sustained fatal injuries, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to Blue Aircraft, LLC and operated by Venture Travel, LLC, dba Taquan Air, Ketchikan, Alaska, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 as a scheduled commuter flight. Company flight following procedures were in effect and visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight originated from the Ketchikan Harbor Seaplane Base (5KE), Ketchikan, about 1540 as Flight 20, and was destined for the Metlakatla Seaplane Base (MTM) in Metlakatla.

According to company dispatch documents, Flight 20 was a scheduled flight with one passenger, U.S. mail, freight and packages destined for Metlakatla, which is a community on Annette Island about 16 miles southeast of Ketchikan.

A preliminary review of archived Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) air traffic control track data revealed that after departure from Ketchikan, the flight traveled southeast over an area known as the Tongass Narrows, then south to Metlakatla Harbor. The end of the flight track indicated a right turn to a westward track in the southern portion of the harbor.

Three eyewitnesses provided statements to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC). All three witnesses reported that the airplane made a normal approach to the water, in a westerly direction.

Two of the witnesses awaiting the arrival of Flight 20, stated that before touchdown on the surface of the water, the wings rocked to the left, and then to the right. One of the witnesses observed the right wing strike the surface of the water, and the airplane nosed over rapidly. After the airplane nosed over, the cockpit and cabin partially sank. The third witness, who was in a fishing vessel north of the accident site, said that as he watched the airplane land, he observed the right float "dig into the water" and then the airplane nosed over.

One of the witnesses photographed the approach, initial touch down, and post-accident events. Refer to figures 1 and 2.

Figure 1. N67667 landing during the accident sequence.

Figure 2. N67667 after the accident. 


Two boats in the area immediately responded, followed by a Metlakatla Police vessel with volunteer emergency medical technicians (EMTs) onboard. According to statements provided by the first responders, the airplane's empennage was hoisted slightly out of the water by the fishing vessel, and good Samaritans together with the EMTs removed airplane seats, mail, packages and cargo netting. The occupants were removed from the airplane and transported to the Annette Island Health Center where they were declared deceased.

On May 21, during the NTSB IIC's on scene examination of the wreckage, it was revealed that the right wing and right lift strut separated from the fuselage in a rearward direction. Witnesses stated that the right wing and strut sank, as well as the passenger's seat after removal, and those components remain missing. All other major aircraft components were intact and accounted for. Several avionics components were subsequently recovered from the wreckage and sent to the NTSB Vehicle Recorders Laboratory in Washington, D.C. for further examination.

According to Taquan Air management personnel, the accident pilot was a new seasonal pilot hired for the 2019 season, and he held a commercial pilot certificate with airplane single-engine land, single-engine sea, and instrument airplane ratings. According to the operator, when the pilot started company orientation on April 22, he had a total of 1,606 flight hours, of which 5 hours were in float-equipped airplanes. He completed the company CFR Part 135.293 and 135.299 check rides in a float-equipped DHC-2 on May 3, and he completed CFR Part 135.244 initial operation experience requirements on May 11, 2019.

The closest weather reporting facility is located at the Annette Island Airport (PANT), about 6 miles south of the accident site. At 1553 an aviation routine weather report (METAR) reported wind from 160° at 10 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, ceiling and cloud cover clear, temperature 55° F, dew point 48° F, and altimeter 29.71 inches of mercury. Witnesses near the accident site stated that the wind conditions were from the southeast, from the direction of Purple Mountain, at 13 to 15 mph, and that the water conditions were less than choppy.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: De Havilland
Registration: N67667
Model/Series: DHC 2
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Venture Travel, LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Commercial Air Tour (136); Commuter Air Carrier (135); On-demand Air Taxi (135)
Operator Does Business As: Taquan Air
Operator Designator Code: 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PANT, 109 ft msl
Observation Time: 2353 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 6 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 9°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 10 knots / , 160°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.71 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Company VFR
Departure Point: Ketchikan, AK (5KE)
Destination: Metlakatla, AK (MTM) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  55.131667, -131.570556 (est)

Sarah Luna

Ron Rash



ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - The day after a deadly plane crash near Metlakatla details about the two people on board who were killed are being released.

The Taquan Air Beaver airplane with a pilot and passenger on board crashed at about 4 p.m Monday afternoon. Taquan Air is the operator of one of two planes that collided near Ketchikan last week, killing six people between the 16 on board both planes.

This is the second Taquan Air crash in just over one week.

The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium confirmed that Sarah Luna, a 31-year-old epidemiologist, died in the Metlakatla crash and the police department in Metlakatla says the pilot was Ron Rash, 51, from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Officials say Luna was working on behalf of ANTHC, for about a year, as part of the diabetes team on her way to the small village near Ketchikan.

"Our most sincere condolences go out to Sarah's family and colleagues and we send our thoughts and prayers during this extremely difficult time," ANTHC wrote in a statement.

ANTHC thanked the community and the first responders for their help.

"Sarah joined the ANTHC family nearly a year ago as a Senior Epidemiologist in the Liver Disease & Hepatitis Program. As a person who was truly committed to improving the health and well-being of Alaska Native people, she was an up and coming research professional. Sarah embodied the characteristics most valuable to our team, as a person committed to improving the health and well-being of Alaska Native people," ANTHC wrote.

Luna had recently purchased a home on the lower Hillside in Anchorage. Peonies line the walkway. A woman who answered the door declined to talk.

The National Transportation Safety Board says several family members are flying to Anchorage.

Meanwhile, Taquan flights have been suspended. The company's public relations firm referred all questions to the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board.

"As you can imagine the past 24 hours have been incredibly overwhelming and we are reeling from not only the incident yesterday, but also from last week. It’s been a really heavy and heartbreaking time for us. Our priority has been our passengers and their families and our internal staff, and pilots," the company posted on its website. "We have voluntarily suspended all of our operations until further notice. We are grateful for your patience and the outpouring of community support and we will update you as soon as we have more information to share."

According to a Facebook page that appears to be Luna's, this was her first float plane ride. Luna also lived and worked in Rwanda at one point and appears to have had several friends who were pilots in Alaska.

"If Alaska were the size of a piece of paper, the amount accessible by roads would be the size of a postage stamp. Planes big and small are essential here, which means pilots are too," Luna wrote on Facebook.

The National Transportation Safety Board held a press conference about the crash Tuesday afternoon.

"We also offer our sympathies to the staff of Taquan Air. The losses this organization has faced in the past week have been devastating. We stand with Taquan Air, in appreciation of all this company does for South East Alaska in general, and Metlakatla in particular," Mayor Karl Cook of Metlakatla Indian Community wrote in a statement posted on Facebook.

The NTSB is required to investigate fatal aircraft incidents. Generally, it will release a preliminary report within a few days, and that will then be replaced with a final description of the crash and its probable cause, if determined.

"It is way too early draw any conclusions," Clint Johnson, the director of the NTSB's Alaska office, said. He said the agency is, "very much in the early stages in the accident investigation."

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



The leadership and staff of the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium extends our condolences to the family and loved ones of Sarah Luna and the pilot who perished in yesterday’s tragic accident. We send our thoughts and prayers during this extremely difficult time to the families of all involved, as well as the people of Metlakatla.

Sarah was traveling to Metlakatla to see patients at Annette Island Service Unit with other ANTHC staff. Sarah joined the ANTHC family nearly a year ago as a Senior Epidemiologist in the Liver Disease & Hepatitis Program. She was an up and coming research professional, who embodied the characteristics most valuable to our team and was truly committed to improving the health and well-being of Alaska Native people. This is a devastating personal loss for many of our staff and partners.

We thank the people of Metlakatla Indian Community as well as the Metlakatla Volunteer Fire Department, the Metlakatla Police Department and the many, many community volunteers who responded to the accident and took heroic efforts in an attempt to save the passengers. We thank those who continue to care for our other staff in the community during this difficult time. We also extend our thanks to Guardian Flight and the U.S. Coast Guard for sending aid and support to the scene.

On behalf of everyone at ANTHC,
Andy Teuber, ANTHC Chairman and President



ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - National Transportation Safety Board officials appeared in a press conference Tuesday afternoon following the fatal floatplane crash that killed two in Metlakatla on Monday.

“There were lots of players involved in the rescue attempt,” said Clint Johnson of the NTSB. About an hour-and a-half after the crash, the two deaths were confirmed, he said.

Johnson also said an NTSB investigator has met with the top management of Taquan Air, the company that owned the plane involved. The investigator then headed straight to the scene to begin on-site research. She is in the process of interviewing witnesses.

“Witnesses watched the airplane landing to the west,” Johnson said, “and there was a wind - about 10 knots - and sometime during the touchdown, a float got caught. The aircraft then cartwheeled and landed inverted. It eventually came to rest upside down.

“The folks who saw the incident are shaken up,” Johnson said.

The right wing was severed in the crash and is missing at this point, but other wreckage has been accounted for; a barge is in Metlakatla to take the plane back to Ketchikan, where most of the detailed documentation will take place. The investigative team will also be meeting with top management personnel, looking at qualifications and others to figure out why the flight may have gone down.

After the agency immediately launched the primary investigation into the crash - as required by law - it also launched a secondary investigation into Taquan Air after the fatal crash in Metlakatla, which happened just a week after a plane operated by the same company was involved in a mid-air collision that killed six near Ketchikan.

NTSB officials launched an investigation into Taquan Air over that fatal flight, as well. The investigations are all being done separately, according to agency officials. All are "very much in the early stages," the NTSB said before Tuesday's press conference.

Preliminary reports are expected to be released in the next few days.

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



ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - A Taquan Air Beaver airplane with a pilot and passenger on board crashed in Metlakatla at about 4 p.m. on Monday according to Deanna Thomas, the spokesperson for the Ketchikan Gateway Borough.

Both people died, and the circumstances of the crash were not immediately available. One of the victims was identified by her employer Tuesday as an epidemiologist.

The National Transportation Safety Board is expected to release a statement about the crash Tuesday afternoon.

The NTSB director for Alaska said the agency had received word of the incident at about 4:30 p.m. An investigator was on her way to Metlakatla Monday, the NTSB's Clint Johnson said, as part of its follow-up to the crash.

"Very, very preliminary information here," Johnson said. "We're hoping to have a little bit more clarity right after this tragic accident, hopefully by mid-day tomorrow."

Johnson said two investigations were launched: One into the fatal crash itself, and another into Taquan Air. The investigations launched Monday, he said, will remain - on the NTSB's end - completely separate from any investigations into the fatal Ketchikan-area crash that happened a week ago.

"It is way too early draw any conclusions," Johnson said. "Very much in the early stages in the accident investigation."

The NTSB is required to investigate fatal aircraft incidents. Generally, it will release a preliminary report within a few days, and that will then be replaced with a final description of the crash and its probable cause if determined.

The Coast Guard had sent a helicopter from Air Station Sitka and a response boat from Ketchikan to try to rescue the plane's occupants, but a Coast Guard spokesperson said Metlakatla Police, Good Samaritans, emergency medical services and Troopers had all responded.

Thomas, with the Borough, said a seining boat was the first to reach the scene of the crash. A Good Samaritan boat towed the plane to shore until it could be secured.

Taquan Air is the operator of one of two planes that collided near Ketchikan last week, killing six people between the 16 on board both planes. A public relations spokesperson hired by the company reached Monday evening said he didn't have any further information at the time.

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

Sikorsky S-76D, N761AF: Accident occurred May 16, 2019 at Morrilton Municipal Airport (KBDQ), Conway County, Arkansas

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. 

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

Additional Participating Entity: 

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Little Rock, Arkansas


Location: Morrilton, AR
Accident Number: CEN19LA146
Date & Time: 05/16/2019, 1830 CDT
Registration: N761AF
Aircraft: SIKORSKY S76
Injuries: 6 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter - Non-scheduled - Air Medical (Unspecified)

On May 15, 2019, about 1830 central daylight time, a Sikorsky S-76D helicopter, N761AF, experienced indications of smoke in the aft baggage compartment and completed an emergency landing at Morrilton Municipal Airport (BDQ) in Morrilton, Arkansas. The pilot, two crewmembers, and 3 passengers were not injured. The helicopter received substantial damage to the rotor drive shaft. The helicopter was operated by Arkansas Children's Hospital as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 on-demand air taxi. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed and VFR flight following was requested for the flight that originated at ACH Springdale Heliport (14AR) in Springdale, Arkansas, with an intended destination of Arkansas Children's Hospital Heliport (AR62) Little Rock, Arkansas.

The pilot reported that 43 minutes into the flight he experienced fumes in the cockpit. He turned the environmental control system off and immediately reduced altitude. Within seconds, he received visual and aural warnings of smoke within the aft baggage compartment. He initiated an emergency descent into BDQ, declaring an emergency with air traffic. He alerted the Arkansas Children's Hospital communications center of the situation and landed at BDQ without further incident.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: SIKORSKY
Registration: N761AF
Model/Series: S76
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Arkansas Children's Hospital
Operating Certificate(s) Held: On-demand Air Taxi (135) 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation:
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction:
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point:
Destination:

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 3 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 3 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 6 None
Latitude, Longitude: 

Mooney M20R Ovation 2, N194DJ: Incident occurred May 20, 2019 at Gainesville Regional Airport (KGNV), Alachua County, Florida

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Orlando, Florida

Aircraft nose gear collapsed after landing on runway 11.

Poly Air LLC

https://registry.faa.gov/N194DJ

Date: 20-MAY-19
Time: 21:08:00Z
Regis#: N194DJ
Aircraft Make: MOONEY
Aircraft Model: M20
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
City: GAINESVILLE
State: FLORIDA

Piper PA-28-181 Archer III, N4166Z: Fatal accident occurred September 08, 2020 and Incident occurred May 18, 2019

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.

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Nashville, Tennessee
Piper Aircraft; Vero Beach, Florida 
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania 

Lebanon Flying Club Inc


Location: McMinnville, TN
Accident Number: ERA20LA309
Date & Time: 09/08/2020, 1130 CDT
Registration: N4166Z
Aircraft: Piper PA28
Injuries: 3 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On September 8, 2020, about 1130 central daylight time, a Piper PA-28-181, N4166Z, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near McMinnville, Tennessee. The pilot and two passengers were fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The airplane was based at Lebanon Municipal Airport (M54), Lebanon, Tennessee. The pilot flew uneventfully from M54 to Warren County Memorial Airport (RNC), McMinnville, Tennessee. Review of security video at RNC revealed that the airplane landed on runway 23 about 1123. It then taxied back to the beginning of the runway for takeoff about 1128 and disappeared from camera view during initial climb about 1 minute later. A witness, who was walking in his backyard heard an airplane engine go silent, then heard the sound of an impact about 30 seconds later. During that time, he briefly saw the airplane through trees, but could not determine its attitude.

Examination of the accident site by Federal Aviation Administration inspectors and a representative from the airframe manufacturer revealed that the airplane came to rest upright in a field about 1,000 ft northwest of runway 23. All major components of the airplane were accounted for and remained intact. The engine was canted right and the left side of the empennage exhibited buckling. The cabin roof had been separated by first responders. Three lapbelts were cut by first responders, but their ends remained attached to the respective fuselage attach points.

Fuel remained in both wing fuel tanks and the fuel selector was found positioned to the right main fuel tank. Flight control continuity was confirmed from the cockpit to all flight control surfaces and the flaps were retracted. Measurement of the pitch trim jackscrew corresponded to a partial nose-down trim setting. Examination of the engine revealed that the No. 4 cylinder head was fractured circumferentially, exposing the top of the piston. The cylinder head was displaced horizontally from the crankcase such that the pushrods and pushrod tubes remained captured in the cylinder head, but were dislodged from the crankcase.

The engine was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N4166Z
Model/Series: PA28 181
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Lebanon Flying Club
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: RNC, 1031 ft msl
Observation Time: 1135 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 17°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots / , 200°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: McMinnville, TN (RNC)
Destination: McMinnville, TN (RNC)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 3 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 35.695278, -85.853611
 
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. 

Federal Aviation Administration investigators were in Warren County on Wednesday to examine a small airplane that crashed Tuesday, killing all three occupants. The plane reportedly crashed shortly after a touch-and-go landing at the airport nearby.


The three passengers who died in a Tuesday morning plane crash near Warren County Airport have been identified.

The victims, all members of the Tennessee Air National Guard, have been identified as Nolansville resident Lt. Col. Shelli Dawn Huether, 45, Murfreesboro resident Capt. Jessica Naomi Wright, 38, and Murfreesboro resident Master Sgt. Scott Alan Bumpus, 53.

All three worked in intelligence support. 

Huether was director of operations for the 118th Intelligence Support Squadron. Wright was assistant director of operations for the 118th Intelligence Support Squadron, and Bumpus was chief of current operations for the 236th Intelligence Support Squadron.

The three were onboard a Piper PA-28-181 Archer III that crashed at 11:30 a.m. in a 50-acre field off Airport Lake Road. 

The airport runway is visible from the crash site.

Warren County Sheriff Tommy Myers said the Federal Aviation Administration was on the scene Wednesday investigating the crash. Myers said the investigation is still in its early stages but it appears the plane did a touch-and-go landing at the airport and had just taken off.

The plane is registered to Lebanon Flying Club. A veteran local airplane pilot told the Southern Standard on Wednesday that touch-and-go landings are used to practice landing and then taking off without the plane ever coming to a stop.

The veteran pilot said the fact the plane is registered to a flying club and a touch-and-go landing was used Tuesday would suggest an inexperienced pilot was gaining flying hours. In speaking to the Standard, the veteran pilot emphasized his thoughts are pure speculation and he has no role in the official investigation.

He said the first thing crash investigators are going to try to determine is whether there is fuel in both gas tanks and whether the engine was still running at the time of the crash. Since the plane crashed near the runway, it indicates there was a problem during takeoff.

“The fact the plane did not catch on fire is a really good thing because that means there’s a lot of available evidence to evaluate,” said the veteran pilot, who also noted the lack of a fire supports the theory the plane had no fuel.

If the plane ran out of gas or stalled for other reasons during takeoff, the proper procedure is to keep the plane straight, the veteran pilot noted, and to point the nose down. A plane of that size is capable of gliding around two miles at just 1,000 feet above ground.

The thing not to do if the plane stalls is to make a sudden turn. If the plane stalled and a quick turn was made to try and return to the airport it could cause the plane to spin, which is similar to when a car spins out. If the plane did spin, it would create a situation where there’s no lift on the wings. This could cause the plane to fall straight down like an elevator.

Based on pictures of the crash, the plane looks like it almost did a belly flop, landing squarely on the ground in this type of scenario. The ground around the plane did not appear disturbed to indicate there was any sort of glide landing for several hundred feet.

“During takeoff, pilots are not thinking about what they’re having for lunch. They should be looking around and constantly monitoring the landscape. You have to be thinking if the motor quits, where am I going to land this thing? You have to push your nose down to get your lift back and you have to fly straight,” the veteran pilot noted.

While it might not seem like the case, altitude is a pilot’s best friend. When a plane is low to the ground, there’s not nearly as much time to recover from a mistake.

The plane was about 100 feet from landing on a farmer who was mowing his field on a tractor. The farmer, Jerry Wiser, had his back to the crash and heard it, but did not see it. Wiser said an eyewitness who helped him at the scene said he saw the crash and described the plane as “falling out of the sky.”

Emergency responders had to use the Jaws of Life to remove the top from the plane to free the three from the wreckage.

According to FlightAware, which tracks flights nationally, the plane took off Tuesday morning in Lebanon at 10:20 a.m. and made an 11-minute flight to Murfreesboro Municipal Airport. It took off in Murfreesboro at 10:53 a.m., according to FlightAware, and was last monitored at 11:18 a.m. near McMinnville. The 911 call of a plane crash came over the local scanner right at 11:30 a.m.

According to FlightAware, the plane was cruising around 1,800 feet and around 108 mph for most of its trip from Murfreesboro. That altitude is about the lowest that’s advisable to fly, according to the veteran local pilot.

According to FlightAware, that plane had been flown frequently in recent days. It was in the air on Monday and Saturday.

It can take months before airplane crash investigations are complete. 

Sheriff Myers said the plane was scheduled to be moved from the crash site and taken to another location for further analysis on Wednesday afternoon.

https://www.southernstandard.com


Captain Jessica Naomi Wright and Family

Investigators with the Federal Aviation Administration were in McMinnville on Wednesday to examine the airplane which crashed Tuesday in a field off Airport Lake Road.


The three passengers who died in a Tuesday morning plane crash near Warren County Airport have been identified.

The victims, all members of the military, have been identified as Nolansville resident Lt. Col. Shelli Dawn Huether, 45, Murfreesboro resident Capt. Jessica Naomi Wright, 38, and Murfreesboro resident Sgt. Scott Alan Bumpus, 53.

The three were onboard a Piper PA-28-181 Archer III plane that crashed at 11:30 a.m. in a 50-acre field off Airport Lake Road. The airport runway is visible from the crash site.

Warren County Sheriff Tommy Myers said the Federal Aviation Administration was on the scene Wednesday investigating the crash. Myers said the investigation is still in its early stages but it appears the plane did a touch-and-go landing at the airport and had just taken off.

The plane is registered to Lebanon Flying Club. A veteran local airplane pilot told the Southern Standard on Wednesday that touch-and-go landings are used to practice landing and then taking off without the plane ever coming to a stop.

The veteran pilot said the fact the plane is registered to a flying club and a touch-and-go landing was used Tuesday would suggest an inexperienced pilot was gaining flying hours. In speaking to the Standard, the veteran pilot emphasized his thoughts are pure speculation and he has no role in the official investigation.

He said the first thing crash investigators are going to try to determine is whether there is fuel in both gas tanks and whether the engine was still running at the time of the crash. Since the plane crashed near the runway, it indicates there was a problem during takeoff.

“Fuel management is a common mistake among low-time pilots. The fact the plane did not catch on fire is a really good thing because that means there’s a lot of available evidence to evaluate,” the veteran pilot said.

If the plane ran out of gas or stalled for other reasons during takeoff, the proper procedure is to keep the plane straight, the veteran pilot noted, and to point the nose down. A plane of that size is capable of gliding around two miles at just 1,000 feet above ground.

The thing not to do if the plane stalls is to make a sudden turn. If the plane stalled and a quick turn was made to try and return to the runway it could cause the plane to spin, which would create a situation where there’s no lift on the wings. This could cause the plane to fall straight down like an elevator.

Based on pictures of the crash, the plane looks like it almost did a belly flop, landing squarely on the ground in this type of scenario. The ground around the plane was not disturbed to indicate there was any sort of glide landing for several hundred feet.

“During takeoff, pilots are not thinking about what they’re having for lunch. They should be looking around and constantly monitoring the landscape. You have to be thinking if the motor quits, where am I going to land this thing? You have to push your nose down to get your lift back and you have to fly straight,” the veteran pilot noted.

While it might not seem like the case, altitude is a pilot’s best friend. When a plane is low to the ground, there’s not nearly as much time to recover from a mistake.

According to FlightAware, which tracks flights nationally, the plane took off Tuesday morning in Lebanon at 10:20 a.m. and made an 11-minute flight to Murfreesboro Municipal Airport. It took off in Murfreesboro at 10:53 a.m., according to FlightAware, and was last monitored at 11:18 a.m. near McMinnville.

According to FlightAware, the plane was cruising around 1,800 feet and around 108 mph for most of its trip from Murfreesboro. That altitude is about the lowest that’s advisable to fly, according to the veteran local pilot.

According to FlightAware, that plane had been flown frequently in recent days. It was in the air on Monday and Saturday.

It can take months before airplane crash investigations are complete.

The three passengers who died in a Tuesday morning plane crash near Warren County Airport have been identified.

The victims, all members of the military, have been identified as Nolansville resident Lt. Col. Shelli Dawn Huether, 45, Murfreesboro resident Capt. Jessica Naomi Wright, 38, and Murfreesboro resident Sgt. Scott Alan Bumpus, 53.

The three were onboard a Piper PA-28-181 Archer III plane that crashed at 11:30 a.m. in a 50-acre field off Airport Lake Road. The airport runway is visible from the crash site.

Warren County Sheriff Tommy Myers said the Federal Aviation Administration was on the scene Wednesday investigating the crash. Myers said the investigation is still in its early stages but it appears the plane did a touch-and-go landing at the airport and had just taken off.

The plane is registered to Lebanon Flying Club. A veteran local airplane pilot told the Southern Standard on Wednesday that touch-and-go landings are used to practice landing and then taking off without the plane ever coming to a stop.

The veteran pilot said the fact the plane is registered to a flying club and a touch-and-go landing was used Tuesday would suggest an inexperienced pilot was gaining flying hours. In speaking to the Standard, the veteran pilot emphasized his thoughts are pure speculation and he has no role in the official investigation.

He said the first thing crash investigators are going to try to determine is whether there is fuel in both gas tanks and whether the engine was still running at the time of the crash. Since the plane crashed near the runway, it indicates there was a problem during takeoff.

“Fuel management is a common mistake among low-time pilots. The fact the plane did not catch on fire is a really good thing because that means there’s a lot of available evidence to evaluate,” the veteran pilot said.

If the plane ran out of gas or stalled for other reasons during takeoff, the proper procedure is to keep the plane straight, the veteran pilot noted, and to point the nose down. A plane of that size is capable of gliding around two miles at just 1,000 feet above ground.

The thing not to do if the plane stalls is to make a sudden turn. If the plane stalled and a quick turn was made to try and return to the runway it could cause the plane to spin, which would create a situation where there’s no lift on the wings. This could cause the plane to fall straight down like an elevator.

Based on pictures of the crash, the plane looks like it almost did a belly flop, landing squarely on the ground in this type of scenario. The ground around the plane was not disturbed to indicate there was any sort of glide landing for several hundred feet.

“During takeoff, pilots are not thinking about what they’re having for lunch. They should be looking around and constantly monitoring the landscape. You have to be thinking if the motor quits, where am I going to land this thing? You have to push your nose down to get your lift back and you have to fly straight,” the veteran pilot noted.

While it might not seem like the case, altitude is a pilot’s best friend. When a plane is low to the ground, there’s not nearly as much time to recover from a mistake.

According to FlightAware, which tracks flights nationally, the plane took off Tuesday morning in Lebanon at 10:20 a.m. and made an 11-minute flight to Murfreesboro Municipal Airport. It took off in Murfreesboro at 10:53 a.m., according to FlightAware, and was last monitored at 11:18 a.m. near McMinnville.

According to FlightAware, the plane was cruising around 1,800 feet and around 108 mph for most of its trip from Murfreesboro. That altitude is about the lowest that’s advisable to fly, according to the veteran local pilot.

According to FlightAware, that plane had been flown frequently in recent days. It was in the air on Monday and Saturday.

It can take months before airplane crash investigations are complete.


All three passengers onboard a Piper PA-28-181 Archer III plane died Tuesday when the plane crashed in a field at the doorstep of Warren County Airport.  The identities of the passengers, all out of town residents, have not been released. Families have been notified. Two women and one man, all members of the military, were onboard the Piper PA-28-181 Archer III plane, according to Sheriff Tommy Myers. The plane is registered to Lebanon Flying Club. It crashed at 11:30 a.m. in a 50-acre field off Airport Lake Road. The field is owned by Jerry Wiser, who was on a tractor mowing at the time and heard the plane crash behind him.

“I really didn’t see anything,” said Wiser. “I heard a crash, a really loud crash. When I turned around there was a plane sitting right behind me. I didn’t expect to see that at all.”  The plane crashed about 100 feet directly behind Wiser’s tractor. He said a person who was working on a nearby barn jumped a fence and rushed to the wreckage with him.  “It was smoking a little when we first got to it,” said Wiser. “I called 911 and was using my knife to cut the seatbelt off one of them when first-responders arrived.”  First-responders used the Jaws of Life to remove the top of the plane to get the occupants out.

Wiser’s property joins Warren County Airport property and the runway is clearly visible from the crash site. The National Transportation Safety Board was called to investigate and is expected to arrive Wednesday.  According to FlightAware, which tracks flights, the plane took off Tuesday morning in Lebanon at 10:20 a.m. and made an 11-minute flight to Murfreesboro Municipal Airport. It took off in Murfreesboro at 10:53 a.m., according to FlightAware, and was last monitored at 11:18 a.m. near McMinnville.

What could have caused the plane to crash is open to speculation. According to FlightAware, the plane was cruising around 1,800 feet and around 108 mph for most of its trip from Murfreesboro. That altitude is about the lowest that’s advisable to fly, according to a veteran local pilot.  The plane crashed in a field and didn’t appear to strike any objects, which is what you want to happen if forced to make an emergency landing. You want to find a large, open area, if forced to make an emergency landing, the veteran pilot noted, and avoid hitting anything such as trees, cows or hay bales.

It’s not known if the engine stopped or ran out of fuel. If the engine did stop, it’s possible for the plane to glide safely to the ground provided it doesn’t lose too much speed. If the plane goes too slow, it prevents proper airflow across the wings, which is what keeps the plane in the air.  If this happens with a plane, proper airflow over the wings stops. The plane can then drop straight down like an elevator. It’s possible to recover from such a spin out, the veteran pilot noted, but not at 1,800 feet.  According to FlightAware, the plane has flown frequently in recent days. It was in the air on Monday and Saturday.  The  National Transportation Safety Board can take months to complete a crash investigation.










Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Alabama and NW Florida

May 18, 2019: Made a hard landing in a field near Shelby County Airport (KEET), Alabaster, County, Alabama.

Vagabond Air LLC

https://registry.faa.gov/N4166Z

Date: 18-MAY-19
Time: 16:37:00Z
Regis#: N4166Z
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: PA 28 181
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: ALABASTER

State: ALABAMA