Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Beechcraft V35B Bonanza, N818S: Fatal accident occurred September 04, 2020 in Three Rivers, Tulare County, California

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Fresno, California

Aircraft crashed under unknown circumstances.


Date: 04-SEP-20

Time: 18:30:00Z
Regis#: N818S
Aircraft Make: BEECH
Aircraft Model: V35
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Total Fatal: 2
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 91

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.

The two men who were killed in an airplane crash over Sequoia National Park have been officially identified.

The Tulare County Sheriff’s Office identified the crash victims as Brian Christopher Nepinsky, 45, and Garry William Zinger, 82.

Witnesses at the airport said that Zinzer was the pilot but the plane belonged to Nepinsky.

The crash was reported just after 4 a.m. on Saturday. Deputies were told that the plane left Visalia Municipal Airport around 11 a.m. Friday on its way toward Needles, near the Nevada border and the Mojave Desert.

Nepinsky and Zinger were supposed to arrive early Friday afternoon. However, they never arrived.

Deputies eventually found the plane and the victims near Eagle Lake in Sequoia National Park.

Radar tapes showed the last location to be near the Upper Horse Creek drainage in Mineral King wilderness — not far from the now 68,000-acre Sequoia Complex Fire burning in the forest.

It's possible that smoke from the nearby fires in Sequoia National Forest impaired visibility.

"It is...in the vicinity of the SQF Fire Complex in an area impacted by smoke," said Sintia Kawasaki-Yee, spokeswoman for Sequoia National Forest.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.


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