Thursday, July 04, 2019

Virgin Atlantic, Airbus A330-300: Incident occurred July 04, 2019 at Logan International Airport (KBOS), Boston, Massachusetts

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Boston, Massachusetts

Diverted to KBOS due to a seat cushion that was on fire in the rear of the aircraft.

Date: 05-JUL-19
Time: 01:25:00Z
Regis#: 11111
Aircraft Make: AIRBUS
Aircraft Model: A333
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: UNKNOWN
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: COMMERCIAL
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 121
Aircraft Operator: VIRGIN ATLANTIC
Flight Number: VIR138M
City: BOSTON
State: MASSACHUSETTS



BOSTON (CBS) – A Virgin Atlantic plane made an emergency landing at Logan International Airport after a passenger seat caught fire in mid-flight Thursday night.

Massachusetts State Police said an external cell phone charger stuffed between the seats may have been to blame. The fire was quickly put out by the crew.


The Boston Fire Department was called to check the plane at about 9 p.m.


“The firefighters were loaded on before we could get off,” said passenger Cory Tanner. “People were definitely nervous just cause we didn’t know what it was.”


No serious injuries were reported, but one passenger did refuse treatment for a smoke-related complaint.


All 217 passengers were evacuated from the plane. They will be rebooked on later flights.


Virgin Atlantic released the following statement: “The VS138 from JFK to London Heathrow (4 July 2019) diverted to Boston due to reports of smoke in the cabin. Our crew responded immediately and the plane has landed safely in Boston. The safety and security of our customers and crew is always our top priority and we are currently investigating to fully understand the circumstances. We’d like to thank our customers for their patience as we work with them to provide local accommodation or to rebook alternative flights to their final destination.”


The plane was flying from John F. Kennedy Airport in New York to Heathrow Airport in London.


Story and video ➤ https://boston.cbslocal.com

MD Helicopters 369E, N5277F: Accident occurred July 04, 2019 near William P. Hobby Airport (KHOU), Houston, Texas

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Houston, Texas

Experienced a hard landing and flipped over.

City of Houston

https://registry.faa.gov/N5277F

Date: 04-JUL-19
Time: 01:45:00Z
Regis#: N5277F
Aircraft Make: MCDONNELL DOUGLAS
Aircraft Model: 369E
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: SUBSTANTIAL
Activity: PUBLIC USE
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: HOUSTON
State: TEXAS


HOUSTON - A Houston Police Department MD Helicopters 369E made a hard landing Thursday at the agency’s hangar near William P.  Hobby Airport.

According to a tweet, a pilot and flight training officer were aboard the chopper when it hit the ground about 8:40 p.m. Neither was seriously injured.

“There is damage to the helicopter but we are very fortunate our officers are okay,” the tweet read.

Both of the officers were evaluated at the scene, according to the tweet.

Original article ➤ https://www.click2houston.com



HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- On Thursday evening, officials responded to reports of a Houston Police Department MD Helicopters 369E to make an emergency hard-landing at William P. Hobby Airport.

According to police, the MD Helicopters 369E had experienced a fuel spill around 8:45 p.m.

Houston Police Department says the pilot experienced a "good jolt" when making its hard-landing.

There is no word on passengers' conditions.

Story and video ➤ https://abc13.com

Fuel Starvation: Cessna 172 Skyhawk, N171Q, accident occurred July 24, 2018 near North Cubs Strip (8AK8), Wasilla, Alaska

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Anchorage, Alaska

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


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms


Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


http://registry.faa.gov/N171Q 


Location: Meadow Lakes, AK
Accident Number: GAA18CA454
Date & Time: 07/24/2018, 1730 AKD
Registration: N171Q
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel starvation
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

Analysis 

The pilot reported that, during the initial climb, the engine experienced a total loss of power. He added that he realized the wrong fuel tank had been selected for takeoff. He subsequently performed a forced landing on a gravel stream bed north of the runway.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings and the empennage.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's selection of the wrong fuel tank for departure, which resulted in fuel starvation and the subsequent total loss of engine power.

Findings

Aircraft
Fuel - Fluid management (Cause)
Fuel selector/shutoff valve - Incorrect use/operation (Cause)

Personnel issues
Incorrect action selection - Pilot (Cause)
Use of equip/system - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Initial climb
Fuel starvation (Defining event)
Loss of engine power (total)

Landing
Off-field or emergency landing

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 45, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/04/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 05/31/2018
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 2300 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1225 hours (Total, this make and model), 2260 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 123 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 67 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1.1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N171Q
Model/Series: 172 Undesignated
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1956
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal; Utility
Serial Number: 28197
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/10/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5674 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C91  installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A1A
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PAWS, 354 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0156 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 130°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 8000 ft agl
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 10000 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 4 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 190°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 18°C / 13°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Meadow Lakes, AK (8AK8)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Anchorage, AK (AK12)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1730 AKD
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: North Cubs Strip (8AK8)
Runway Surface Type: Gravel
Airport Elevation: 350 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 32
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 1500 ft / 50 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing; Full Stop

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage:Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 61.630000, -149.682500 (est)

Why the flight to the hospital is more costly than ever


Air ambulance rates in the United States are soaring.

The cost of a medical ride in a helicopter or airplane climbed about 60% from 2012 to 2016, to a median of $39,000, according to a study of federal data released Monday. The list charges rose to as much as 10 times what Medicare pays for the service, despite a surge of air ambulance carriers entering the market, the study said.

Because many air ambulance companies are not part of insurance networks, patients often get hit with the huge bills, according to the findings by Johns Hopkins University researchers, whose study was published in the journal Health Affairs.

"If you're somebody who gets injured, and an air ambulance comes, you're going to pay huge amounts because most likely you're out of network and you're going to get a bill for $30,000 or $40,000,'' said Gerard Anderson, a professor of health policy and management at Johns Hopkins and co-author of the study.

There are virtually no cost controls in the system, Anderson added. Even though the number of air ambulance carriers is on the rise, most local markets are still limited to a single carrier without competition, he said.

"You keep raising the price until there is a response,'' he said. "Maybe Congress will do something. Until that happens, you continue to raise your price because there are no constraints.''

The Johns Hopkins researchers said the median charge per mile of a helicopter ambulance in 2016 was $238.

The industry says Medicare rates are a poor benchmark for comparison. It claims Medicare air ambulance rates are 40% below cost and that air ambulance companies are forced to increase list prices as a result.

"Because of the vast underpayments by Medicare and Medicaid, and to preserve the ability of air medical services to provide access to critical levels of health care for millions of Americans, rates are raised to cover the losses incurred by providing services to Medicare, Medicaid, and uninsured patients,'' said the industry trade group, the Association of Air Medical Services.

It blamed low Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates for the closure of 32 air ambulance bases in 2019.

The AAMS also said the Johns Hopkins study flawed because it lumped helicopter service in with fixed-wing aircraft, which the industry said are infrequently used in emergencies.

Helicopters with advanced medical equipment airlift people from the scene of accidents, or move them from smaller hospitals to larger medical centers with more advanced surgical capabilities and burn units. The business has grown exponentially over the two decades, with private equity investment ownership of large national chains.

Before 2002 most air ambulances were run by hospitals, according to a 2017 report by Consumers Union, a major consumer advocacy group. Then Medicare set higher rates for reimbursement that drew in private business, fueling the boom.

Market concentration is another hallmark of the explosion in use and costs. The Government Accountability Office, a federal watchdog agency, said in 2017 that just three private companies were flying 692 of the industry's 1,045 helicopters in 2015.

Demand also has grown with the closure of rural hospitals across the country, making it all the more important to move patients longer distances to hospitals in urban centers.

The number of medical helicopters and fix-wing aircraft in the skies has correspondingly exploded to the point that the market may be saturated, the Johns Hopkins study said.

"The high charges, therefore, might be the result not of lack or entrants or limited supply, but of a market failure,'' the study said.

State legislators responding to consumer outrage over whopping air transport bills find themselves handcuffed. The Airline Deregulation Act of 1978 prohibits states from regulating routes or rates, the study said.

The air ambulance industry is fighting legislation in Congress that could owner costs for patients and health insurance companies. Seeking to protect patients from surprise medical bills, a Senate bill on health costs would set the price of an ambulance trip by an out-of-network carrier at the median in-network price.

"The legislation would devastate the provision of this service in the United States," the Association of Air Medical Services said in a statement last month.

In 2017, about two-thirds of air ambulance transports for patients with private insurance were out-of-network, the GAO said this year.

Air Methods is the largest carrier in the United States. The Johns Hopkins study said a former parent company of Air Methods air ambulance service, ranked highest with rates that were 10.4 percent above Medicare's benchmark. The company also was the most commonly used air ambulance service among Medicare patients, accounting for 21 percent of trips in 2016, it said.

Air Methods, which was purchased by private equity firm American Securities in 2017, did not comment but referred to a statement by an industry-backed advocacy group called Save Our Air Medical Resources.

"One hundred percent of emergency air medical providers, not to be confused with nonemergent, fixed wing transports, are called to respond only by EMTs or physicians who determine that the patient should be transported by air,'' SOAR said. "They never self-deploy and go when called, regardless of the patient's ability to pay."

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.news-journal.com

Loss of Control on Ground: Luscombe 8F Silvaire, N1489B, accident occurred July 26, 2018 at Lawrenceville/Brunswick Municipal Airport (KLVL), Virginia

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia

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

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

http://registry.faa.gov/N1489B

Location: LAWRENCEVILLE, VA 
Accident Number: GAA18CA448
Date & Time: 07/26/2018, 1530 EDT
Registration: N1489B
Aircraft: Luscombe 8
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

Analysis 

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during landing, as soon as the main landing gear touched down, the airplane veered left. He tried to correct with right rudder, but the airplane exited the runway to the left into the grass and came to rest inverted.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 5 minutes after the accident, the wind was from 230° at 5 knots. The airplane landed on runway 36.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain directional control during the landing roll with a tailwind.

Findings

Aircraft
Directional control - Attain/maintain not possible (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Tailwind - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing
Loss of control on ground (Defining event)
Attempted remediation/recovery
Runway excursion
Roll over

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 70, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 06/06/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/20/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 1089.3 hours (Total, all aircraft), 158.6 hours (Total, this make and model), 1013.6 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 6.4 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4.1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 3 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Luscombe
Registration: N1489B
Model/Series: 8 F
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1948
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 6116
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/14/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.:  1400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 3588.1 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: C90-12F
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 90 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLVL, 329 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1935 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 338°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4300 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 5 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 230°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.01 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 31°C / 22°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Smoketown, PA (S37)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: LAWRENCEVILLE, VA (LVL)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1246 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: LAWRENCEVILLE/BRUNSWICK MUNI (LVL)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 328 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 36
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 3020 ft / 50 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 36.772778, -77.793889 (est)

AgustaWestland AW139, N32CC: Fatal accident occurred July 04, 2019 in Big Grand Cay, Bahamas








Killed in the July 4, 2019, crash off of Big Grand Cay in the Bahamas were Christopher Cline; his daughter, Kameron, 22; Brittney Searson, 21; Delaney Wykle, 23; Jillian Clark, 22; and pilots David Jude and Geoffrey Painter.

As two pilots prepared to land in the Bahamas in July 2019 on an emergency run to fly two sick newly graduated college students, two of their friends and the pilots’ billionaire boss to Fort Lauderdale, one remarked to the other: “I haven’t flown this thing in over a month until today.”

The co-pilot retorted “Bloody #,” a recently released National Transportation Safety Board transcript from the cockpit reveals. The transcript uses ”#” to replace expletives.

When the pilot, Jupiter resident David Jude, responds that the helicopter has been in “the # shop,” co-pilot Geoffrey Painter replies: “Has it? What’s been wrong with it?”

Jude’s answer would in retrospect prove unnerving: “Every # thing,” he said.

The pilots landed in the pre-dawn hours of July 4 on coal magnate Christopher Cline’s private Big Grand Cay in the Bahamas and soon set off on their medical run with five more passengers.

Within minutes, the 15-passenger Agusta SpA AW139 crashed, killing all seven onboard.

More than a year after the July 4, 2019, crash new details of the tragedy have emerged in National Transportation Safety Board reports released on Aug. 17.

Cline, 60, the self-made West Virginia coal billionaire whose homes included a mansion in northern Palm Beach County, had gathered with family members and their friends for a celebration of his July 5th birthday on his island in Abaco.

The chopper, piloted by Jude, 57, with co-pilot Painter, 52, went down in the ocean about one minute after taking off, records show. Their last utterance came at 1:53 a.m., nine seconds before the transcript stopped.

Besides Cline and the two pilots, on board were Cline’s daughter Kameron, 22; Brittney Searson, 21, her best friend and classmate at The Benjamin School in Palm Beach Gardens and at Louisiana State University, where they had graduated just two months earlier; Delaney Wykle, 23, a childhood friend of Kameron’s; and Jillian Clark, 22, another recent LSU graduate and fellow sorority member of Kameron’s.

About 15 to 20 family members and friends had been arriving on the island by helicopter, fishing yacht and seaplane, according to a witness statement given to investigators by Robert Hogan, Cline’s property manager on Big Grand Cay and his friend for 38 years.

People were playing chess, riding Sea-doos and playing music. They had dinner, and Hogan said he was present with everyone until 11 p.m.

Shortly after, Hogan said he was informed by a host that Kameron Cline and a friend had become ill. Hogan described the young women as “groggy and unresponsive,” and told investigators he was not sure of the cause.

Hogan said he also learned that Jude, one of Cline’s regular corporate pilots, was flying to the island to transport the two ill women, along with Cline and the other two passengers, to the United States for emergency medical attention.

The flight plan shows the helicopter having arrived from Walter’s Cay Airport in the Bahamas, and bound for Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport, where U.S. Customs was still open at that hour.

It landed on a helipad on Big Grand Cay between 1:30 a.m. and 1:45 a.m. and remained on the ground with the engines running, Hogan said. The passengers boarded and the two sick young women had to be helped onto the plane and strapped in.

Cline even brought a puppy dog with them.

‘Warning terrain. Warning terrain’

The chopper lifted off, turned right, climbed three to four stories high, and accelerated with its nose down over the west end of the island for the 30-40 minute flight to Fort Lauderdale, where authorities were alerted to have two ambulances waiting for Kameron and her friend.

According to Hogan and another witness, George Russell, who was on a dock with six other people, the takeoff appeared normal. But he told investigators that he then saw the chopper’s “lights moving funny, the lights went out, and he heard an impact.”

The cockpit voice recorder shows the pilot and co-pilot in discussion over routine pre-flight steps until Painter says at 1:52:30 a.m. “Alright airspeed coming up. No, it’s not coming up. So push that nose forward. Get some airspeed.

Within seconds the sounds of an electronic voice and a warning tone filled the cockpit.

Jude asks at 1:52:56, “How high are you and three seconds later answers his own question, “Three-hundred feet.”

Painter says, “We’re not” and Jude replies “That’s what it says over here.”

An electronic voice repeats “Warning terrain. Warning terrain.”

“Yeah, we were diving,” Painter says at 1:53:05.

Eight seconds later, he adds: “There was a fatal accident in the UK and this is exactly what happened there.”

Jude asks “Give us a heading” three times.

And then the human voices stop. The electronic voice keeps repeating “Warning terrain. Warning terrain.”

At 1:53:22, there’s the sound of an impulsive noise.

The electronic voice says “Bank angle. Bank angle.” And finally “Rotor low,” before recording stops at 1:53:28.

Something was amiss

Hogan said he went to bed that night, and arose at 6 the next morning and began his day as usual.

He said he began to realize something was amiss when he learned that the helicopter never made it back to the hangar where it was stationed at Palm Beach International Airport. Jude was supposed to fly Cline’s other son, Logan, to the island that day.

Hogan began calling the U.S. Coast Guard, hospitals and anyone else he could think of to see if anyone had heard from Cline. No one had. He asked the Coast Guard to begin a search.

Later that day, he learned that people on the island had heard a strange sound, like a thud, around the time the helicopter took off.

By early afternoon, a search team, including Cline’s chef and party planner, boarded a fishing boat and headed into the ocean where witnesses said they heard the strange sound.

They spotted the wreckage, the chopper’s wheels still extended, in an oily spot in the water. A diver spotted the bodies, still strapped to their seats.

They were removed from the wreckage and brought to shore where Hogan said he identified them.


https://www.palmbeachpost.com

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration Office of Accident Investigation; Washington, District of Columbia
Leonardo Helicopters; Cascina Costa
Pratt & Whitney Canada; Longueuil, Quebec 
Air Accident Investigation Department; Nassau New Providence
Transportation Safety Board of Canada; Ontario 
European Aviation Safety Agency; Cologne 
Agenzia Nazionale per la Sicurezza del Volo

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

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

https://registry.faa.gov/N32CC

Location: Big Grand Cay, Bahamas
Accident Number: ERA19FA210
Date & Time: 07/04/2019, 0154 EDT
Registration: N32CC
Aircraft: Agusta AW139
Injuries: 7 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 4, 2019, about 0154 eastern daylight time, an Agusta AW139, N32CC, owned and operated by Challenger Management LLC, was substantially damaged when it impacted the Atlantic Ocean near Big Grand Cay, Abaco, Bahamas. The commercial pilot, airline transport pilot rated copilot, and five passengers were fatally injured. The helicopter was being operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for a flight from Walker's Cay Airport (MYAW), Walker's Cay, Bahamas, to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport (FLL), Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The flight departed from a concrete pad at Big Grand Cay, which was located about 5 nautical miles (nm) southeast from MYAW, about 1 minute prior to the accident.

The purpose of the accident flight was to transport two of the passengers to FLL for medical treatment.

The helicopter departed from Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), West Palm Beach, Florida, about 0057, and a witness reported that it landed on the concrete pad at Big Grand Cay between 0130 and 0145. After landing, the helicopter remained on the ground with the engines operating, while the passengers boarded. During the subsequent takeoff to the east, the witness reported that the helicopter climbed to about 30 to 40 ft and accelerated while in a nose-down attitude. He did not notice anything unusual while he observed the helicopter depart.

Another witness, who was located about 1.6 nm southwest of the accident site reported seeing the helicopter lift off and climb to between 40 and 50 ft above ground level; then shortly thereafter, he noted blue and white lights spinning to the left at a rate of about 1 to 2 seconds between rotations while descending. He estimated that the helicopter rotated to the left three to four times. He then heard a "whoosh whoosh whoosh" sound, and lost sight of the helicopter, which was followed by the sound of an impact. The witness reported what he had heard to the "caregiver" of Big Grand Cay. The witness went out on his boat about 0205 and used spotlights to search the area where he thought the helicopter had crashed but was unable to locate it.

The Federal Aviation Administration issued an alert notice for the overdue flight about 1521. The helicopter was subsequently located by local residents sometime between 1600 and 1700, in about 16 ft of water about 1.2 nm north-northeast of the departure point.

The helicopter was found inverted and the tailboom was separated from the aft fuselage and was recovered in multiple pieces. All five main rotor blades were separated but recovered. The tail rotor assembly, which was also separated was subsequently recovered. All four tail rotor blades were separated, and one tail rotor blade was not recovered. The recovered wreckage was retained for further examination, to include examination of the airframe, engines, flight controls, seats and restraints.

The helicopter was equipped with a multi-purpose flight recorder, an enhanced ground proximity warning system and several additional components capable of storing non-volatile memory, which were retained for evaluation and data download.

The accident investigation was initially under the jurisdiction of the Air Accident Investigation Department (AAID) of the Bahamas. On July 6, 2019, in accordance with Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, the AAID requested delegation of the accident investigation to the NTSB, which the NTSB accepted on July 8, 2019. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Agusta
Registration: N32CC
Model/Series: AW139 No Series
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Challenger Management LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night/Dark
Observation Facility, Elevation: MYGF, 8 ft msl
Observation Time: 2000 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 46 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C / 25°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 2500 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots / , 160°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 25000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Big Grand Cay, FN

Destination: Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 5 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 7 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 27.238056, -78.304444

Geoffrey Lee Painter
October 30th, 1966 – July 4th, 2019








Geoff Painter of West Palm Beach, Florida, formerly of Kingston upon Hull, England died tragically on July 4, 2019. He was born October 30, 1966 in Barnstaple, England. He is survived by his wife Debbie, son Mark, mother Janet Painter of Little Weighton, England and cousin Alison Wells of London, England.

Geoff was accepted into the Royal Air Force as an Officer Cadet in 1989 and was stationed at RAF Cranwell in Lincolnshire, England. On leaving the RAF Geoff worked in financial staff recruitment, before opening his own recruitment agency in Kingston upon Hull which he ran successfully for 10 years. Seeking another career change, in 2003, Geoff decided to return to his real passion, flying, choosing helicopters over fixed wing aircraft. After completing his helicopter flight training in Florida he worked as a helicopter Flight Instructor before establishing Cloud 9 with his business partner in 2005.


Geoff’s first passion was always his family, whom he loved dearly. In addition to his zeal for flying, he also enjoyed clay and game shooting, fast cars and was an ardent England Rugby Union fan. Geoff was a friend to everyone he met and a mentor to many. He was always generous with his time and energy, and encouraged and facilitated the dreams of others, helping them realize their full potential.


Geoff will be greatly missed by all that knew him. 


Blue skies and tail winds forever!


Watch tribute movie ➤ https://www.dignitymemorial.com



David Jude
December 2nd, 1962 - July 4th, 2019

David Jude, 56, of Juno Beach, FL, formerly of Kermit, WV departed this life on July 4, 2019. He was born on December 2nd, 1962 in Louisa, KY. He is survived by his mother, Maxine Jude of Kermit, WV; two sisters, Cathy (Greg) Fraley of Inez, KY and Kellie (Mike) Sheehy of Louisville, KY; four children, Davey Jude, Maxi Jude, Wesley Stanley and Reese Varney. Special family members; Harrison (Dora) Jude, Brenda (Kim John) Jude McCallister, Bryan (Denise) Jude, Jennifer (Odell) Sartin, Auburn Hensley and Bogey along with a host of special nieces, nephews, and friends. He was preceded in death by his father, John David Jude. 

David was one unique individual. To those who knew him, he lived more than nine lives. He started out at an early age as a truck driver, moving on to a successful business owner in Kermit, WV, USAR Hooter’s Cup race car driver and Cloud 9 business partner. His current endeavors included project manager, helicopter and seaplane pilot for the Cline Group, where he was also a loyal, trusted confidant. It could be said that he was the glue that held everything together, both business and personal. 

He was truly extraordinary with his charismatic, but direct personality. He was genuine in every sense of the word. He was kind and always eager to help others. Anyone who met David, knew exactly where they stood with him. If he was your friend, he was devoted to your best interests. 

David was an avid golfer and cyclist, always full of adventure. While living a life that most envy, he never forgot his West Virginia roots. Above all, David’s family fulfilled his true happiness. His family held his heart. It is without uncertainty, that he will be forever remembered. David will be missed by everyone that had the opportunity and pleasure of knowing him.

Funeral services will be held at the Roy F. Collier Community Center in Inez, Kentucky on Monday, July 15, 2019 at 1:00pm with visitation starting at 11:00am. Burial will follow at the Jude Family Cemetery in East Kermit, WV with pallbearers; Davey Jude, Daniel Ortiz, Ardie Jenkins, Jr. Hanshaw, O’Dell Sartin, Steve Dewese, Duane Blankenship, Don Rothrock, Shawn Dewese, Buddy Sartin and Doug Kirk. Friends may visit at the Callaham Funeral Home on Sunday from 2:00-8:00pm. Arrangements are under the direction of the Callaham Funeral Home, Inez, KY. 




















Employees oversee the arrival of the bodies of four women and three men at the airport in Nassau, Bahamas.