Wednesday, February 09, 2022

Cessna 310R, N622QT: Fatal accident occurred February 01, 2022 in Danville, Pittsylvania County, Virginia

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 traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia
RAM Aircraft; Waco, Texas
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Sol Aerial Surveys LLC; Las Vegas, Nevada

Sol Aerial Surveys LLC

Location: Danville, Virginia
Accident Number: ERA22FA114
Date and Time: February 1, 2022, 10:06 Local 
Registration: N622QT
Aircraft: Cessna 310 
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Aerial observation

On February 1, 2022, about 1006 eastern standard time, a Cessna 310R airplane, N622QT, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Danville, Virginia. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was operated by Sol Aerial Surveys as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 aerial surveying flight.

The pilot had previously flown aerial surveying in the same make and model of the accident airplane. The accident flight was his first solo aerial surveying flight for the company following several observation flights with the company’s owner. The airplane departed the Danville Regional Airport (DAN), Danville, Virginia, about 1003. A witness reported that the departure looked normal and that he heard nothing other than standard radio transmissions during the airplane’s taxi, takeoff, and departure from the airport area.

According to preliminary Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) data, the airplane turned toward the southeast and climbed to an altitude of about 2,300 ft mean sea level (msl) before beginning a descent about two minutes into the flight. The last data point showed the airplane at 1,100 ft msl about 1,150 ft from the accident site with a groundspeed of 168 knots. A nearby landowner who got a brief glimpse of the airplane while on his tractor reported that it “came in flat” and was “not turning or spinning.”

The airplane impacted a wooded area about 4 nautical miles southeast (104°) of DAN. Severed treetops indicated that the airplane entered the wooded area banked to the right about 30°. The wreckage was highly fragmented along the 382-foot debris path oriented on a true heading of 246°. There was a strong fuel odor but no evidence of fire.

The largest portion of the wreckage, consisting of the empennage, an engine, and the remnants of the cockpit was located about 214 feet beyond the severed treetops at the base of a 16-indiameter pine tree that was broken about 15-20 feet above the ground. The tree had fallen onto the wreckage opposite the airplane’s direction of flight. A second engine was located about 150 ft farther along the debris path. Neither the wings nor the fuselage was intact. The flap setting could not be determined. The landing gear were all fractured off from their mounts and located in various parts of the debris field and their preimpact positions could not be determined. The pitch trim position could not be determined. Six propeller blades were recovered, all fractured from their mounts. All blades displayed impact damage and some displayed leading-edge gouging, chordwise abrasion, twisting and aft bending. None of the propeller blades could be readily identified with the engine on which they were installed, and maintenance records were not immediately available.

No cockpit instruments were intact, and the throttle control quadrant was impact-damaged with all levers fully forward except the left throttle which was fully aft (closed) and the left propeller which was 2/3 aft. The fuel selector for the left engine was found in the OFF position and the fuel selector for the right engine was selected to the left main tank. Flight control continuity could not be confirmed for the elevator, rudder, and aileron due to impact damage. Rudder trim position could not be determined.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N622QT
Model/Series: 310R 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
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: DAN,590 ft msl 
Observation Time: 09:53 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 4 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 1°C /-4°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 7 knots / , 60°
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.47 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Danville, VA (DAN)
Destination: Danville, VA

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Latitude, Longitude: 36.556292,-79.253198

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email You can also call the NTSB Response Operations Center at 844-373-9922 or 202-314-6290. 

Lynn Spencer
Air Safety Investigator
National Transportation Safety Board 

PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Virginia (WSET) — The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)  arrived at the scene of a plane crash in Ringgold on Wednesday morning.

The NTSB, along with the Federal Aviation Administration, is now leading this investigation.

According to officials, the plane took off from Danville Regional Tuesday at 10:03 a.m. The plane climbed to about 2300 feet before descending.

Preliminary radar data showed the plane heading southeast at 10:06 a.m. The NTSP says the crash likely occurred shortly after.

"At this point, we are collecting information. We are going to look a the pilot, his training, his qualifications, his recent state of experience. We are going to be looking at the airplane. We are going to be sure we have all of the pieces of that aircraft," said NTSB lead investigator Lynn Spencer.

The body of the pilot has been transported to the medical examiner for identification.

Officials say the plane was a Cessna 310R and was operated by SOL Aerial Surveys.

Investigators are asking for the public's help to aid in the investigation.

If you saw anything between Caldwell Lane and the Danville Regional Airport, from around 10:02 a.m. to 10:10 a.m. Tuesday, you are asked to reach out to the NTSB. You can call the NTSB at 866-328-6347 or you can email

Lynn Spencer
Air Safety Investigator
National Transportation Safety Board 

UPDATE 3:50 p.m. (2/2/22): Lynn Spencer, an air safety investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) provided an update on the plane crash that killed a pilot Tuesday in Pittsylvania County.

On behalf of the NTSB, Spencer gave her condolences to the family members of the crash victim, who has not yet been identified.

Spencer says that Virginia State Police, the Ringgold Fire Department, Pittsylvania County Public Safety Department, and the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office are also helping the NTSB and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in investigating the crash.

NTSB arrived on the scene on Wednesday, February 2.

They confirm that the crash took place at approximately 10:03 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 1 involving a Cessna 310R that departed the Danville Regional Airport. The last radar communication with the aircraft took place at 10:06 a.m., with the crash likely taking place within a minute or so later.

The NTSB will continue collecting evidence over the next few days, including looking into the background of the pilot and what may have caused the plane to crash.

Debris is said to expand about 125 yards.

Officials are asking anyone who may have seen the plane or may have information that could help the NTSB in their investigation to call 1-866-328-6347 or email

Spencer says they expect the investigation in the crash to take 12 to 18 months.

UPDATE 3 p.m. (2/2/22): The National Transportation Safety Administration will be holding a news conference at 3:45 p.m. regarding the plane that crashed on Tuesday morning in the Ringgold section of Pittsylvania County.

UPDATE 10:58 a.m. (2/2/22): Virginia State Police have confirmed that the person who died in Tuesday afternoon’s plane crash in Pittsylvania County was the only person on board the aircraft at the time.

According to authorities, the Cessna 310R departed from Danville Regional Airport and crashed at approximately 2:04 p.m. on Tuesday, shortly after take-off, near Cardwell Lane in Ringgold.

Officials say the victim’s remains were brought to the Virginia Department of Forensic Science’s Western Office for positive identification.

The NTSB and the FAA are also investigating the crash.

UPDATE 9:25 p.m.: Authorities are still on the scene of a plane crash in Pittsylvania County.

WFXR News is still on-scene as well and authorities have still cordoned off the area, not allowing anyone near the area where the plane crashed.

They say officials with the NTSB and the FAA have not yet arrived on the scene which is still being classified as being in “recovery mode.”

Crews are still going through the wreckage.

They expect to be on the scene for at least the next 24 hours.

UPDATE 5:20 p.m.: WFXR News has been able to confirm that one person has died in a plane crash that occurred earlier on Tuesday off Milton Highway in the Ringgold section of Pittsylvania County.

WFXR News’ Amanda Lee says authorities have said the plane that crashed was performing aerial surveying after it left Danville Regional Airport around 10 a.m.

At approximately 2:01 p.m., aircraft monitoring lost contact with the plane.

The pilot is reportedly the only person on board. That person has not yet been identified.

Authorities are awaiting approval from the NTSB and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to remove the victim from the crash.

DANVILLE, Va. (WFXR) – A small plane has reportedly crashed near Danville.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) says the crash took place on Tuesday, Feb. 1.

The plane was a Cessna 310.


    KDAN 011500Z AUTO 06007KT 10SM CLR 02/M04 A3046

    Crashed shortly after takeoff:

    A few data points were captured by Flightaware:

    Previous day's survey track:

    1. fr24 has more data points than flightaware for this flight,

    2. That fr24 alt/velocity plot suggests a loss of control plunge at high speed. Wasn't preceded by low speed that would indicate a stall and the WX conditions at the time wouldn't be expected to contribute.

      Flight duration seems short for a CO impairment scenario.

      Aircraft used in survey work experience repetitive turns. Always wonder about the possibility of worn control cables or a structural problem cropping up that might account for unexplained LOC.

  2. Hello all,

    What is the status of N217GB a Cirrus VisionJet (SF-50)?

    How would I find out if it is still available? It was posted on December 19, 2020

    Thank you!

    1. You may want to contact Sample International

  3. From how the props are bent and the left Engine at idle I’d say he had a left engine failure cause of the aircraft to roll

  4. Report noted that the fuel selector for the left engine was found in the OFF position and the fuel selector for the right engine was selected to the left main tank.

    Suggests left engine got secured and right engine was acting up too.

  5. What kind of wimpy check flight that guy had. A 310R is easy to fly on one engine.

    1. If you are proficient in single engine flight maybe. But few MEL pilots stay that way.

      Most of the survey company's don't/can't do an extensive check out flight in the plane. While I was working for Vexcel/GV Air (The same company the pilot got his previous 310 experience) We only ever practiced single engine flight in a sim. The sim we used did not represent single engine flight that well either. Thus despite having about 250 hrs in a 310 myself I was never able to actually fly one around single engine. I don't know SOL's checkout process though.

  6. Why was the pilot’s name not released? It’s been 5 months…


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.