Thursday, March 25, 2021

Piper PA-32-260 Cherokee Six, N26DC: Accident occurred March 24, 2021 at Burlington International Airport (KBTV), Chittenden County, Vermont

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; Portland, Maine 
Location: Burlington, VT
Accident Number: ERA21LA211
Date & Time: March 24, 2021, 16:00 Local 
Registration: N26DC
Aircraft: Piper PA-32-260
Injuries: 4 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N26DC
Model/Series: PA-32-260 NO SERIES 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
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: BTV,334 ft msl 
Observation Time: 16:00 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Altimeter Setting: 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Burlington, VT
Destination: Springfield, VT (VSF)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 3 None 
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 44.471955,-73.153276 (est)

A civilian aircraft caught fire at the Burlington International Airport Wednesday night.

The 158th Fire Department of the Vermont Air National Guard says flames were on the side of the Piper Cherokee and spreading to the wing.

Crews responded after the aircraft control tower spotted the aircraft smoking on the runway. The pilot and passengers got out of the plane before emergency crews arrived. No injuries have been reported.

Gene Richards, aviation director at the airport, says the fire was a foot away from the fuel tanks before the fire department doused the flames. A cause of the fire was not identified.


  1. Normally I'd ask why not try and put it out with the fire extinguisher. But then I realized the only way out of Pipers like this is the right hand door over the wing where that fuel tank is and where that right gear was on fire. They made the right decision. I refuse to fly an aircraft with only one door for this very reason. Just a stupid design that cuts your escape chances in half in a serious fire situation.

  2. PA-32 260 has two doors. There is a rear door on the pilot side.


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