Wednesday, March 09, 2022

Cessna 182Q Skylane, N182XT: Fatal accident occurred March 08, 2022 near Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (KECP), Bay County, Florida

Donald Slattery

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; Birmingham, Alabama
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas

Location: Panama City, Florida 
Accident Number: ERA22FA149
Date and Time: March 8, 2022, 18:46 Local 
Registration: N182XT
Aircraft: Cessna 182Q
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal 

On March 8, 2022, at 1846 central standard time, a Cessna 182Q airplane, N182XT, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near the Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP), Panama City, Florida. The private pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was operated by the pilot as a personal flight conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

Review of Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B) data provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) revealed that the pilot initiated an instrument flight rules (IFR) cross-country flight from his home airport of Jack Barstow Airport (IKW), Midland, Michigan at 1212 eastern standard time and arrived at Warren County Memorial Airport (RNC), McMinnville, Tennessee at 1503 central standard time for a total time enroute of 3 hours and 51 minutes. A fuel receipt showed that at 1520 the pilot purchased 74 gallons of 100-low lead fuel. The pilot departed at 1554 and arrived in the ECP area after about 2 hours and 45 minutes of flight time.

Review of preliminary air traffic control communications provided by the United States Air Force and FAA revealed that the flight was in contact with Tyndall Air Force Base (Tyndall Approach). The controller informed the pilot that information “quebec” was current, cleared him to OTTOE intersection (initial approach fix), and subsequently issued a clearance for the straight-in ILS runway 16 approach. A few minutes after the approach clearance the pilot confirmed that he was “established” on the approach and the controller instructed the pilot to contact the ECP air traffic control tower.

The pilot radioed the ECP air traffic control tower and informed the controller he was inbound on the ILS 16 approach. The controller acknowledged and then provided the current weather observation at the airport which included wind at 150° at 6 knots, visibility 2 statute miles, mist, overcast ceiling at 200 ft above ground level, and a barometric pressure of 29.92 inches Hg. The pilot stated, “200 overcast we’ll give it and try and see if we can get her down.” The controller then issued a landing clearance and subsequently offered to turn the approach lights up to the highest setting available with the pilot’s concurrence. The pilot stated, “affirmative that would be good” and the controller responded with “roger.” The controller subsequently warned the pilot that if he did get beneath the overcast clouds, the approach lights would be bright, and the pilot acknowledged.

About 40 seconds later, the controller stated, “I’m receiving a low altitude alert. Check your altitude” to which the pilot stated “affirmative.” The controller then advised the pilot that Tyndall Approach noticed his flight track was deviating to the right [of the final approach course] and to use caution. He then provided the wind and ceiling information, which had not changed from the previous information provided. The pilot stated “affirmative”, and the controller followed up by stating, “one more thing, and then I won’t transmit again. There are other airports nearby with better weather conditions.” The pilot stated, “alright we’ll try this down to minimums and go-around if need be.”

About 12 seconds later the controller stated, “it appears you are drifting a little to the right” and then repeated “it appears you are drifting well to the right.” There were no further communications from the pilot despite several attempts from the controller to reach him. The controller subsequently alerted airport operations of a possible downed aircraft.

Review of the ADS-B flight track in the final approach phase found that the airplane’s course deviated left and right from the initial approach fix to the accident site, which was 1.55 nautical miles from the runway threshold. The airplane’s altitude showed momentary descents and climbs while on final approach. The final ADS-B data point recorded the airplane at 75 ft mean seal level, 144 knots groundspeed, with a ground track heading of 130°. Figure 1 shows the accident site, the final approach course represented as the yellow line, and the airplane’s flight track represented in the magenta line.

According to FAA airman records, the pilot held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land, and instrument airplane. He was issued a third-class medical certificate on December 10, 2020. Review of the pilot’s logbook revealed that he had 691 hours of total flight time, of which 569 hours were in the accident airplane. In the preceding 90 days, he had logged 5.4 hours all of which were in the accident airplane, 1.3 hours of actual instrument flight experience, and 0 hours of night flight. In the past 6 months he had logged 11 instrument approaches. His most recent flight review was competed on June 14, 2021.

The wreckage came to rest in an area of heavily wooded terrain and was fragmented. The initial impact area coincided with about 100 ft trees and the debris path was oriented on a heading of 130°-140° magnetic. The angle of descent through the trees was about 18°-20°.

All major components of the airplane were located in the debris path. Flight control and trim cable continuities were confirmed from the cockpit to each flight control surface except for the aileron balance cable which exhibited tension overload and splayed ends. There was no evidence of fire, and a strong odor of fuel was present.

The flap actuator was found in a position that corresponded to flaps up. The fuel selector handle had sustained impact damage. Its valve was found partially ported to the BOTH position.

The cockpit and instrument panel sustained significant impact damage. The primary attitude indicator remained partially attached to the panel and its vacuum air hose remained attached. The instrument sustained impact damage and its internal components had broken free and were loose in the instrument casing. The secondary electrically driven attitude indicator was loose in the debris. The altimeter was found set to a barometric pressure of 29.88 inches Hg. 

The horizontal situation indicator sustained impact damage. It indicated a heading of 135°. The course deviation indicator was found set to 172° with a one dot deflection indicating the airplane was left of course. The heading bug was set to 150°. The glideslope deflection indicator was not visible.

The throttle, mixture, and propeller levers were full forward. The carburetor heat lever was found partially extended.

The engine had separated from the airframe and was found a few feet forward of the main wreckage. Evidence of angularly cut pine tree branches were observed covering the aft section of the engine. The engine was rotated manually by hand through 360° of movement.

Crankshaft, camshaft, and accessory section continuity was demonstrated. Thumb-compression was displayed on each cylinder. The majority of the vacuum pump had fractured from the accessory section of the engine and was not located in the debris. It’s engine driven gear operated normally when the engine was rotated.

The three bladed propeller had sheared from the propeller flange and was located a few feet from the engine. The blades exhibited leading edge gouging, chordwise scratches, and torsional twisting.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N182XT
Model/Series: 182Q NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: IMC
Condition of Light: NightDark
Observation Facility, Elevation: ECP,57 ft msl 
Observation Time: 18:51 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 3 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C /20°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: 200 ft AGL 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots / , 150°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 200 ft AGL
Visibility: 2 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.92 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: McMinnville, TN (RNC)
Destination: Panama City, FL (ECF)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 30.395611,-85.810205

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.

Donald Slattery and Diane Postler-Slattery

Donald Slattery (65) and Diane Postler-Slattery (62) tragically passed away in a private plane crash on March 8th, 2022, in Panama City Beach, FL. They would have celebrated 31 years of marriage on March 16th, 2022. They were married at New Hope Community Church in Wausau, WI in 1991. Throughout their time here on Earth, Don and Diane embraced every opportunity that came their way to the fullest. They lived faithfully, loved unconditionally, worked passionately, and gave generously.

Don was born in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin on January 12, 1957, to William and Eleanor (Ponczoch) Slattery. He started his career at Aspirus Wausau Hospital in 1982, where he was a Biomedical Electronics Technician. Don started his own business called Tower Technical Services, LLP. He later earned an MBA from the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh in December of 2002. He eventually found his way back to Aspirus Wausau Hospital where he retired as a Project Manager in 2012. Don was able to enjoy his retirement years supporting Diane and being dedicated to his family and friends.

Don had an undeniable passion for aviation. He loved working with his hands and tinkering on projects. He was both creative and methodical and could make or fix anything. Don loved people and having fun. He would drop anything and everything at a moment’s notice to help anyone. His steadiness, strength, and reason were matched by his warmth, love and deep devotion to Diane, his children, and his grandchildren. He was an amazing husband, father, “papa,” son, and brother.

Diane Postler-Slattery was born in Thorp, Wisconsin on March 30th, 1959, to Melvin and Julie (Dittbrender) Postler. She started her career at Aspirus Wausau Hospital as a nurse. She earned a MS in Nursing Administration from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. She then earned her Ph.D. in Education Administration from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1995. Through her hard work and dedication, she became President and COO of Aspirus Wausau Hospital. In 2013, Diane was offered the opportunity to become President and CEO of MyMichigan Health in Midland, Michigan. Diane was passionate about healthcare and truly loved her career.

While many people knew Diane as an impressive leader of the community, she was an even more impressive wife, mother, sister, daughter, and grandmother. She was passionate about everything she did. She had the ability to make everyone feel at home with her infectious smile and big hugs. Diane loved the outdoors and often referred to riding horses as her “happy place.” Wherever she went, she left a trail of half-drank Diet Dr. Pepper cans. She was the caretaker, the comforter, and the counselor for those she loved.

Don and Diane were very active members of each community they resided in. They were involved in numerous organizations, boards, and charities. Though dedicated to service, they were never happier than when enjoying time and sharing laughs with their family and friends. Their lives were grounded in the faith they had in the Lord which was evident in the way they lived and how they gave of their time and energy.

Don and Diane are survived by their children and grandchildren: Michael (Liz) Fredericks (children; Luke and Violet) of Duluth, MN; Michelle (Scott) Grutzik (children; Henry, Calvin, and Theodore) of Wausau, WI, Melissa (Austin) Swihart of Boones Mill, VA.

Don’s surviving siblings include Judy Slattery (Sister-in-Law; Glenwood Springs, CO), Lois (Wally) Leece (Wisconsin Rapids, WI), Kathy TerMaat (Vesper, WI), Charlotte Richardson (Wisconsin Rapids, WI), Janet (Larry) Lassa (Wisconsin Rapids, WI), John (Kris) Slattery (Wisconsin Rapids, WI), Michael (Deb) Slattery (Plover, WI), Mary Beth (Craig) Kruse (Green Bay, WI), Marcia Slattery (Madison, WI), and Lori Slattery (Wisconsin Rapids, WI) and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by William and Eleanor Slattery (parents), William Slattery Jr (brother), infant siblings Kenneth (brother) and Jean (sister), Dale TerMaat (brother-in-law), Dennis Leece (nephew) and Jeff TerMaat (nephew).

Diane’s surviving family are her parents Melvin and Julie (Dittbrender) Postler (Ringle, WI), sister Dixie Hettinga (Weston, WI), brother Dennis (Jennifer) Postler (Bonsall, CA), sister Desirae Koning (Sussex, WI), and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by Cliff Hettinga (Brother-in-Law) and Olive Jean (Infant Niece).

In lieu of flowers or gifts, any donations will be used to set up scholarships and given to various charitable organizations that Don and Diane felt passionate about.

A celebration of their lives will be held on Saturday, March 19th, 2022, at New Hope Community Church, 229375 County Road J, Wausau, WI, 54403 (715) 845-8541. There will be two visitation times: 9:00 am to Noon and again from 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm. The service will begin at 4:00 pm.

Brainard Funeral Home, Everest Chapel, Weston, is assisting the family with arrangements.