Friday, November 06, 2020

Cessna 337F Super Skymaster, N337V: Fatal accident occurred July 30, 2020 in Ennis, Madison County, Montana

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: 

Aviation Safety Inspector; Helena, Montana
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Continental Motors; Mobile, Alabama 

Red Devil Skymasters LLC

Location: Ennis, MT
Accident Number: WPR20LA245
Date & Time: 07/30/2020, 0938 MDT
Registration: N337V
Aircraft: Cessna 337
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Business 

On July 30, 2020, about 0938 mountain daylight time, a Cessna 337F, N337V, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Ennis, Montana. The pilot was critically injured, one passenger was seriously injured, and one passenger was fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 personal flight.

The flight departed Helena Regional Airport (HLN), Helena, Montana on a business trip about 0845. Its destination was Jackson Hole Airport (JAC), Jackson Hole, Wyoming, about 185 nautical miles (nm) south-southeast of HLN. About 1032, the Madison County Sheriff's Dispatch office received a 911 call from one of the surviving passengers, who stated that they had crashed, and that the accident site was near Ennis Lake.

About 1600 on the afternoon of the accident, the wreckage was located about 5 nm west-southwest of Ennis Lake in the Gallatin National Forest, at an altitude of about 7,597 ft mean sea level; this was about 75 nm south-southeast of HLN, the departure airport. First responders reported that it appeared that the entire airplane was accounted for at the accident site.

The airplane was recovered to a secure facility for further examination. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N337V
Model/Series:337 F 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: EKS, 5423 ft msl
Observation Time: 0955 MDT
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / 8°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Calm / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  8 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.37 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Unknown
Departure Point: Ennis, MT (HLN)
Destination: Jackson Hole, WY (JAC)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire:None 
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 45.390000, -111.558056 (est)

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

Reef Hogan guesses the odds of being in a plane crash are about one in a million.

Those chances are actually closer to one in 11 million, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. Just a few months after crawling from the plane crash that put him in the hospital and killed his father, Reef already has aims to get back into the air.

“He told me, ‘You have to be strong in a world that’s weak,’” said the 16-year-old from his home in Billings, where he is living with his mother and grandparents.

On July 30, Reef, his father and their flight instructor took off from Helena Regional Airport on a clear morning bound for Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Less than an hour after takeoff, their Cessna 337 Skymaster spiraled into the mountains near Ennis Lake. The impact cracked the plane open, stranding the three passengers in the Gallatin National Forest.

“I can remember everything,” Reef said.

He can remember seeing the flight instructor, who was piloting the plane, flying out of the left seat of the cockpit as the plane hit trees. He can remember the smell of oil mixing with pine at the crash site. And, he remembers the last conversation he had with his father, Brandon Hogan.

“He said, ‘I love you son.’ And I said, ‘I love you, too.’”

Although both he and the flight instructor survived, neither was in any condition to trek through the forest. Hogan’s ankle had swollen larger than a grapefruit, and the flight instructor suffered a compound fracture to one of his legs. Hogan used his own belt as a tourniquet for the pilot.

Brandon Hogan, 52, did not survive the crash, but his cell phone ensured that his son would. Looking through his father’s flight bag, he found the phone. With just 9% left on its battery life, he managed to reach a Madison County dispatcher. While they waited for rescue, the young flight instructor wondered out loud how Reef could forgive him.

“It was very touching, and I’ve got no hate toward him. He’s a good guy and just in his early 20s. We’ve stayed in contact and both said that a plane crash isn’t going to stop us,” Reef said.

After five hours, Reef was in the air again in a rescue basket dropped by a Life Flight helicopter.

“They don’t warn you how dizzy you can get in one of those,” Reef said.

Reef eventually landed in Bozeman. To treat his injuries, staff in the Bozeman emergency room cut through the flight suit Reef was wearing — his father’s flight suit that he wore to keep warm after the crash. The flight suit, along with everything in it, went into a plastic bag. That plastic bag went into a landfill. Those treating Reef didn’t realize that they had thrown away a piece of Brandon Hogan that his son wanted to keep, his father's Rolex watch.

When Reef woke up from spinal surgery, he asked Dr. Ben Smith what happened to his flight suit, his wallet and his father’s watch. Smith, whose own father died when he was in 8th grade, looked through Reef’s room, then he made calls to search through the crash site and the helicopter that brought Reef to Bozeman.

“When I heard ‘We think it may have gone out with the trash,’…before I knew it, I was driving faster than I probably should have to the dump,” Smith said.

With family members and a hospital staff member, Smith plucked through mounds of trash at a local dump for several hours. A safety officer helped guide their search, while another employee operated a plow. About 10 feet deep into a pile of garbage, Smith said he spotted the flight suit. He felt something heavy inside the left breast pocket.

“That was more gratifying than any surgery I’ve ever done,” Smith said.

A video posted to Facebook by Reef’s mother, Kelly Kriskovich Hogan, shows Smith handing the Rolex to him while he laid in a hospital bed. He also held the bag containing the ripped and bloodied flight suit. 

“What a blessing it was to have Dr. Smith. We were there until the morning of the funeral for his father, and Dr. Smith offered to drive Reef to the funeral. I had no idea how to care for him as far as transferring him from the hospital to car,” Kelly Hogan said.

Reef has screws in his body now, in his ankle and back. The impact of the crash shattered his heel and ankle, fractured two of his vertebrae and cracked his sternum. While he suffered no head trauma, he went into the Bozeman hospital room with a cut above his eye. His right arm still carries scars from lacerations.

Kelly Hogan launched a GoFundMe page for her son’s recovery. Insurance offered through her employer did not begin until two days after the accident, leaving her and her family with hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills to pay. To date, it has raised about $13,000.

Although he needed a walker to attend high school classes three days a week since coming to Billings, Reef has since transitioned to a wooden cane. Along with classwork, he has physical therapy sessions and counseling for post-traumatic stress disorder. He said he should be physically recovered by July of next year, and he should also be back inside of a cockpit.

After testing out of high school, Reef said he’ll enroll in the aviation program at Rocky Mountain College to continue his ambition of becoming a pilot.

“I want to go back up to their hangar and visit sometime. There’s a special feeling about being in a hangar…It’s just comfortable…I want my own airplane, a little runway and a tiny house with a hangar,” Reef said.

In following his father’s passion for flying, Reef will become a fourth-generation pilot. Brandon Hogan, a former student at Rocky Mountain College, used his career as a film producer to go from piloting his grandfather’s de Havilland Chipmunk to flying in a U-2 spy plane. His career took him to Afghanistan and Iraq, where he made a documentary about helicopter pilots for the 1st Air Calvalry Brigade, and he also had a chance to introduce his son to astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

"It's a disease," Brandon Hogan told the Gazette in 2008 after speaking to students at Rocky Mountain College. "I fell in love with flying and never deviated from the course."

Reef Hogan of Billings.

Reef's father, Brandon Hogan, pictured in the middle.

Reef Hogan is obsessed with flying, even though he is still recovering from numerous injuries he suffered in a plane crash last summer, including a broken ankle, broken heel and back fractures.

“When it comes to high school and that, I’m not the best. But when it comes to aviation, I love it,” the 16-year-old from Billings says.

It might seem surprising that he feels that way, considering what happened the last time he was in an airplane.

Reef, his father and the pilot were on a trip from Helena to Jackson Hole in a 1971 Cessna 337 Skymaster late last July when the engine stalled as they approached a mountain range in Madison County.

“We weren’t high enough to recover from a stall like that. My Dad just said, 'Reef hold on.' I didn’t say anything. I was just like, 'Oh God.' And he said, 'I love you son,' and I just said, 'I love you too, Dad.'”

Seconds later, the plane crashed into trees on the side of the mountain and tore wide open.

“The pilot on the left seat goes flying out. It was kind of hard to tell what happened to my Dad,” Reef said.

Reef’s father, Brandon Hogan, died in the crash. Brandon Hogan had a military and government background and worked in the film and movie industry.

“He met people that hardly anybody got to meet. When I was four, he introduced me and my brother to astronaut Buzz Aldrin because he was friends with him back then,” Reef recalled.

Reef credits his father for teaching him to stay strong and push through any situation. He found himself in an unimaginable one on that mountain. His father dead—and the pilot injured and in shock.

“I thought, I’ve got to save him if he is still alive. So I took my belt off and used it as a tourniquet on his leg so he wouldn’t bleed out. And I crawled back over and lied down and looked around. Because over by Ennis, that’s bear country up on that mountain,” said Reef.

Fortunately, Reef was able to find his father’s phone—and somehow get a signal to call 911.

“The phone only had nine percent left on it. And I somehow got a hold of them. I just talked to the lady and said we are up in a plane crash southwest of Ennis Lake and I think my dad is dead. The pilot is still alive and I’m still alive,” he said.

Reef and the pilot spent another five hours at the crash site before rescuers could finally reach them. While he was lying there, waiting, he found his father’s Rolex watch lying on the ground next to him.

While Reef went to the hospital, where he stayed for almost a month, his clothes were cut off him- with the watch inside- and accidentally sent to the landfill.

And that’s where his spinal surgeon, Dr. Ben Smith, comes in. Smith later delivered the watch, a wallet, and Reef’s clothes to him in the hospital after searching through the landfill to find them.

“I almost cried because of it. He lost his dad when he was young too, so he felt a connection. He went to a landfill for his about three hours outside of Bozeman with his family and his friends,” said Reef.

“It was a miracle that they even found it in that landfill,” said Reef’s mom, Kelly, who was touched by the effort.

And it’s also a miracle that Reef survived to tell his story. He says he plans to chase his dreams—like his father did—and that includes flying an airplane.

“I want to get back up and flying again. I know what happens if I get into another one, but I don’t plan to,” he said.

Reef's mother had recently started a new job when her son was injured, and her insurance didn't go into effect until two days after the crash. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help with expenses.

After the plane crashed, Reef found his dad's watch. He stuck the watch and his wallet in the pockets of his clothes. When he was in the ER, they cut off his clothes and threw them in the garbage. The surgeon was upset about this as he knew how important that watch would be for Reef. You see, the surgeon lost his dad when he was in 8th grade. The video is the outcome:

Incident occurred November 06, 2020 in Clear Creek County, Colorado

CLEAR CREEK COUNTY, Colorado (CBS4) — US Highway 6 was closed between Golden and Highway 119 after a hang glider crashed in the area on Friday evening.

The Clear Creek County Sheriff, Golden Fire Rescue and the Colorado State Patrol were involved in the operation.

Officials said the hang glider is a man in his 30s and he suffered several broken bones but is expected to survive.

There was no estimate for when Highway 6 would reopen.

Federal appeals court finds Baltimore's surveillance plane program is constitutional

BALTIMORE, Maryland (WBFF) - A panel of federal court of appeals judges ruled this week that Baltimore's controversial aerial surveillance plane program is in fact constitutional.

The three judge panel, which ruled 2-1, found that the plane does help police combat crime without violating resident's right to privacy.

In the opinion, judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III wrote: “In addition to not infringing a reasonable expectation of privacy, the AIR program seeks to meet a serious law enforcement need without unduly burdening constitutional rights."

The lawsuit was originally filed by a local activist group back in June and the ACLU of Maryland later took on the case.

The groups hoped to ground the surveillance plane, which was flying under a 6-month pilot program, citing privacy and constitutional concerns.

In a statement, the ALCU of Maryland wrote that they were disappointed in the court's ruling:

"We and our clients are extremely disappointed by the court’s decision failing to put a stop to this invasive surveillance technology. Because of this decision, this kind of aerial surveillance could become a chilling, all-seeing part of daily life across the country. And as the dissent pointed out, this oppressive surveillance is likely to fall on exactly the kinds of minority communities who have suffered under decades of segregationist and exclusionary policy and policing. This technology presents a society-changing threat to everyone’s right to privacy, and it must be stopped.”

Despite this weeks ruling, the planes future remains up in the air after the pilot program ended last week.

Community Support Program, which operated the plane in conjunction with Baltimore Police, cited recent data that shows the plane assisted in solving at least 7 homicides during the pilot.

"It doesn't make any sense to me that a program, which is designed to help officers solve the crimes that are wreaking havoc on certain parts of this city, because of politics we're going to end this program," Marshall Bell with the program said.

City Council President and Baltimore's Mayor-elect Brandon Scott has been an outspoken critic of the plane. He told FOX45 News last week that he doesn't believe the plane helps fight crime but says he looks forward to fully evaluating the pilot program.

"We're talking about a city where most of the violence happens at night and it's a plane that doesn't work at night, period," Scott said.

However, just yesterday there were two daytime shootings in Baltimore.

Miami judge blasts Venezuela’s top airline for ‘fraud’

MEDELLIN – Two Venezuelan businessmen once convicted in the United States as unregistered agents of the late Hugo Chavez have scored a major victory in a Miami courtroom in a bitter fight for control of the South American country’s largest private airline.

While Avior Airlines has largely been grounded by United States sanctions and the coronavirus pandemic, the investors hope to recover at least some of its assets, including a regional airline in neighboring Colombia.

A Miami circuit judge this week rejected a suit by Jorge Añez that alleged his Florida-based partners had overcharged Avior for parts and services.

Judge Michael Hanzman found that Añez had no authority to represent Avior, saying there was overwhelming evidence he cooked the company's books and formed an “illegitimate board of friendlies” to seize the struggling airline.

Ruling on the previously unreported lawsuit, he found that Añez had lied in testimony and tried to use the U.S. legal system to perpetrate “fraud.”

“Mr. Añez’s claim of 100% ownership of Avior is a complete fabrication, which reeks of afterthought and was concocted only after ......a dispute over the operations of Avior,” the judge wrote.

Neither Añez, his lawyer nor Avior’s President Juan Bracamonte responded to repeated email and phone requests for comment.

The partner Añez tried to force out is an investment group that includes Carlos Kauffmann and Moises Maionica. Both men were sentenced in 2008 to more than a year in United States federal prison for their role in a political scandal involving a suitcase full of $800,000 in cash sent to Argentina aboard a Venezuelan government plane.

The two Venezuelan businessmen testified that they had been sent by then-President Chavez’s spy agency to Miami to offer hush money to an FBI informant to keep quiet about the cash shipment, which was allegedly destined to finance the campaign of former President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

Upon completing their sentences, both men remained in the United States and resumed their careers.

In 2010, they paid $5 million for a 50% share in Avior and its affiliates and helped transform it from a near-bankrupt carrier with a single aircraft to one serving routes throughout Venezuela as well as Miami and Latin America.

As foreign carriers abandoned Venezuela overpayment disputes with the socialist government of Nicolas Maduro’ — Chavez's successor — Avior for a while managed to fill the void, boosted by heavily subsidized jet fuel, a highly favorable exchange rate for its ticket sales in dollars and unmet demand from wealthier Venezuelans who still could afford to travel.

But as the United States has imposed stiff sanctions on Venezuela, the airline has once again come upon hard times.

In 2019, it lost its profitable route to Miami as the United States imposed a flight ban on Venezuelan airlines in its bid to force Maduro from power. It’s also been blacklisted by European regulators due to safety concerns. Meanwhile, the coronavirus has grounded its fleet of 26 aircraft for months.

The company’s highest-valued asset, an Airbus A340-300, was recently turned over to Maduro’s government to pay off old debts and fees, according to Kauffmann. This summer the same plane, its tail number changed and now operated by state airline Conviasa, flew from Caracas to Tehran, flight tracking records show.

According to the judge’s order, relations between Añez and his partners began to sour in late 2018. A few weeks later the two sides decided to part ways, with Añez agreeing to purchase the half of the airline he didn’t already own for $37.5 million.

But the deal was never executed and instead Añez maneuvered to appoint an “illegitimate board” comprised of his son and longtime lawyer, according to the judge’s order. He also filed the Miami lawsuit against his partners, accusing them of using a Florida-registered company they also owned to overcharge the airline by several millions of dollars for parts, supplies and maintenance.

In his order, Judge Hanzman didn’t determine the merits of Avior’s underlying claims, just whether Añez, as the purported 100% shareholder of the airline, had the authority to initiate legal proceedings.

He found that Añez in testimony tried to disavow the existence of a company ledger that listed the Miami investors as shareholders and replace it — after filing his lawsuit — with a bogus ledger where his partners were excluded.

“Testimony by Mr. Añez is emblematic of a disregard for the truth and a willingness to commit perjury and not engage the evidence in a credible way,” the judge wrote.

Kauffmann said that even as he and Maionica have tried to move beyond his past, Añez thought that with his lawsuit he could pressure them into selling their shares and taking full control of the company for practically free.

"He thought that because of our background we would be afraid to defend ourselves in American courts and that it would be a handicap,” Kauffmann told the AP.

The two sides are also fighting in a parallel arbitration at the International Chamber of Commerce.

Kauffmann concedes that there’s little worth fighting for and that reclaiming the company in Venezuela is a lost cause so long as Maduro remains in power. Still, emboldened by the Miami ruling, he hopes to use the judgment to salvage what he can of Avior’s investment in neighboring Colombia, where it operates a regional airline, Gran Colombia de Aviacion, out of the city of Cali.

Springfield-Branson National Airport (KSGF), Greene County, Missouri

SPRINGFIELD, Missouri (KY3) - A low-flying plane caused concern for some Springfield residents Thursday evening.

That plane, Delta Flight 4942, was on final approach, when the pilot requested a go-around. The plane then circled, returned to the airport, and made a safe landing.

According to the tracking website, FlightAware, the flight made a loop before finally landing.

One of the passengers on that plane posted on a local Facebook scanner page that he thought maybe the plane was landing at the wrong airport. According to an Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson, that is not the case.

The pilot requested a go-around because he was “experiencing an unstable approach and wanted to be cautious.”

I asked for clarification on what made it an unstable approach, and a Delta spokesperson confirmed that the pilot did the go around because he was being cautious.

As the plane made the circle back to the airport, some folks on the ground were a bit concerned.

One said in response to the passenger’s post on Facebook “I live right near downtown airport and that sucker was loud, thought you were going down.”

Another noted “That flight from Atlanta looked like it did a go-around, but nothing on tracking indicates it was near the downtown airport. Go around can be for a variety of reasons.”

And as mentioned, that reason was the pilot requested that go around due to an unstable approach. Neither the Federal Aviation Administration nor Delta Air Lines had a specific reason why the pilot made that decision.

Cessna 150F, N8700G: Accident occurred November 06, 2020 at Chandler Municipal Airport (KCHD), Maricopa County, Arizona

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; Scottsdale, Arizona
Location: Chandler, AZ 
Accident Number: WPR21LA038
Date & Time: November 6, 2020, 08:09 Local 
Registration: N8700G
Aircraft: Cessna 150
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under:

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N8700G
Model/Series: 150 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KCHD,1243 ft msl
Observation Time: 08:47 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point: 28°C /-2°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 5 knots / , 120°
Lowest Ceiling: 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.78 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Chandler, AZ
Destination: Chandler, AZ

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 33.268884,-111.80974 (est)

CHANDLER, Arizona (3TV/CBS 5) -- The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating after a plane flipped over on the runway in Chandler on Friday morning.

The incident happened at Chandler Municipal Airport near McQueen and Germann roads around 8:30 a.m.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the pilot of a Cessna 150F experienced a problem shortly after takeoff. The aircraft flipped onto its roof after landing short of the runway. 

No injuries were reported. 

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub, N282KZ: Incident occurred November 06, 2020 in Knoxville, Marion County, Iowa

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Des Moines, Iowa

Aircraft flipped over on Lake Red Rock after landing hard. 

Shawver Aviation

Date: 06-NOV-20
Time: 18:05:00Z
Regis#: N282KZ
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: PA18
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: UNKNOWN
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
State: IOWA

An amphibious plane has been left floating in Lake Red Rock Friday after it flipped upside down as the pilot was attempting to land. 

The pilot and passenger both escaped the plane with no injuries, according to chief deputy Troy Fisher with the Marion County Sheriff's Office.

The sheriff's office was notified of the incident around 12:07 p.m.

The private plane had taken off from the Knoxville Municipal Airport. 

It's unknown at this time whether the plane flipped due to a pilot or mechanical error, Fisher said. 

The Federal Aviation Administration has been called regarding the incident. 

Fisher said there is not a concern about the plane leaking oil or gas into the water.

The plane will likely be taken out of the water tomorrow. Buoys will be set up around the plane to prevent boats from hitting the plane.

MARION COUNTY, Iowa — Two people survived a plane crash in Marion County uninjured, according to authorities.

According to a news release from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, a seaplane overturned after hitting water.

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office did not specify where the accident occurred.

Authorities said neither of the occupants of the plane suffered injuries and it is unclear if mechanical or pilot error caused the crash.

The crash remains under investigation by the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Aviation Administration, Corp of Engineers and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

The Knoxville Township Fire Department, Knoxville City Rescue, and Marion County Emergency Management also assisted at the scene of the crash.

Agusta A109S Grand, N109EX: Accident occurred November 06, 2020 in Los Angeles, California

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.

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; LAX FSDO Los Angeles, California
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; VNY FSDO Van Nuys, California 

Prime Healthcare Air Transportation LLC

Location: Los Angeles, CA 
Accident Number: WPR21LA039
Date & Time: November 6, 2020, 15:00 Local 
Registration: N109EX
Aircraft: Agusta A109 
Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 135: Air taxi & commuter - Non-scheduled

On November 6, 2020, about 1500 Pacific daylight time, an Agusta A109S helicopter, N109EX, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at the University of Southern California (USC) Keck Medical Center (USC Keck), Los Angeles, California. The pilot sustained minor injuries, and the two passengers were uninjured. The helicopter was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal
Regulations Part 135 Helicopter air ambulance flight.

The pilot reported that he established the helicopter in a steep approach, to land on the rooftop helipad of a multi-story medical building. The pilot had offset his heading to the left to gain greater visibility to the landing zone. He observed the absence of any wind indication from the windsock and no movement on nearby trees. When the helicopter had decelerated to about 45 knots, he increased the engine and rotor RPM to 102%. About 40 feet above the helipad, the pilot noticed a slight yaw to the right that continued despite full left pedal application. He thought to fly away from the helipad when the helicopter aligned in the direction he just approached from. As the helicopter rotated to about 90° from his approach heading, it suddenly and very violently made a dramatic increase in right yaw. Realizing the helicopter was going to be uncontrollable, the pilot “dumped the collective” and tried to stay over the helipad. He stated that after the helicopter struck the helipad, it rolled left and continued spinning on its side, and eventually came to a stop. The pilot performed an emergency shut down of the engines and exited the helicopter unassisted. The passengers exited unassisted.

A review of a witness video, (See figure 1), taken from an adjacent building, revealed the helicopter approached the rooftop helipad while slowly rotating clockwise about the vertical axis. The helicopter stopped descending and rotated 360°. The helicopter then descended while rotating an additional 180° and rolled to the left before impacting the helipad. The main rotor blades contacted the helipad, followed by the left main landing gear and the fuselage. The helicopter descended out of view of the camera. 

The helicopter came to rest on its left side, on the helipad. The four composite blades of the main rotor system fragmented and separated, spreading debris throughout the rooftop and down to the ground. The tail rotor and 90° gearbox separated and were found on the rooftop. The left main landing gear separated and remained near the attachment points of the fuselage. (See figure 2.)

The wreckage was relocated to a secured facility for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Agusta Registration: N109EX
Model/Series: A109 S Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Operating Certificate(s)
On-demand air taxi (135)
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

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

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 34.058037,-118.20811 (est)

LINCOLN HEIGHTS, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- One patient was treated after a helicopter crashed and was seen on its side on the helipad of the Keck Hospital of USC in the Lincoln Heights area Friday afternoon.

The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to the hospital on the 1500 block of San Pablo Street around 3 p.m. but there was no fire or known leak of fuel from the rotorcraft.

The agency added that the private air ambulance helicopter was transporting a donated organ to the hospital. Fire officials later said the donated organ was "safely retrieved" and handed over to hospital staff.

Officials initially said two people were being treated. They later clarified that one patient was transported with minor injuries and two other people who were on board the aircraft declined medical treatment.

No one on the ground was injured.

Details about what led up to the incident were not immediately available.

Norfolk Street was closed between Soto and San Pablo streets, and the public was being urged to avoid the area until further notice.

Boeing 757-200, N453UP: Incident occurred November 06, 2020 at King County International Airport - Boeing Field (KBFI), Seattle, Washington

United Parcel Service Co

SEATTLE, Washington – A UPS Cargo plane looked like it was on fire early Friday morning after at least one bird was ingested into one of the plane’s engines.

The King County Department of Emergency Services says the Boeing 757 cargo plane took off at 4:20 a.m. from Seattle-Boeing Airport headed to Portland when at least one bird hit the engine.

The engine suffered what’s called a compressor stall, similar to a car backfiring, which is why it looked like it was on fire and made loud noises.

A spokesperson with the county’s emergency services says the plane circled around the airport and landed without incident. There were no injuries to any of the crew.

Emergency crews checked the runway for any debris and reopened the runway around 5 a.m.

UPS says the aircraft is undergoing maintenance.

Robinson R44, N612GG: Hard Landing


2016 Robinson R44 N612GG,  s/n: 14016,  1120.68 hours TSN 

Last Annual Inspection on March 8, 2020 @ 1045.13 hours 


Lycoming IO540-AE1A5, s/n: L-36553-48E, 1120.68 ETSN 

Last Annual Inspection on March 8, 2020 @ 1045.13 hours 


Simplex Helipod III, Garmin GTX327, Garmin GTR225B

Spray equipment and GPS are NOT INCLUDED in salvage sale.


Helicopter was coming in for landing onto a trailer in Adams County, Iowa.  During approach, the tail rotor hit a little (15 foot) tree, which vibrated the helicopter (tail boom / gearbox) and resulted in hard landing.


The damage includes but may not be limited to:

Tail rotor blades

Tail rotor gear-box

Tail rotor driveshaft

Tail rotor boom

Tail boom stinger

Vertical/horizontal stabilizer

Belly mount spray tank impacted, breached and attach points shifted

Left spray boom and nozzles

Spray system induction lines

Spray motor and fan

Hard landing inspection: engine mounts, skids, attach points and front/rear bulkhead

Main-rotor blade contact with the tree       


The rotoraft is in secured hangar storage at the facility of:  West Aviation Inc, Creston Municipal Airport (KCSQ)  Creston, Iowa


Spray equipment and GPS are NOT INCLUDED in salvage sale.

Insurer reserves the right to reject any and all bids. 

Salvage is as is/where is. 

The posting information is the best to our knowledge. 

An inspection of the salvage is highly recommended. 


WARRANTY:  There is no warranty, express or implied for the information provided herein or the condition, useability, workability, operability or marketability of the aircraft salvage.  All times are approximate and the logbooks and aircraft should be inspected by each bidder BEFORE BIDDING.  Failure of the bidder to view the salvage or wreckage, or confirm any information provided is NOT grounds for a claim or withdrawal of bid after bid closing date.)  
HOURS estimated from logbooks or other information - not guaranteed or warranted.

Read more here:  http://www.avclaims.coml