Poor visbility, poor decisions

Aircraft: Cessna 150. Injuries: 2 Fatal. Location: Goble, Ore. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: A CFI and pilot receiving instruction were on a flight in an area of light rain, fog, and overcast ceilings. The airplane entered a hilly area during a steady rain.

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Unusual mid-air captures national attention

The NTSB and FAA are investigating a skydiving/plane crash Saturday afternoon in Mulberry, Florida, according to a report at 970WFLA.com. The crash captured national attention with the skydiver appearing on the national morning television newscasts.

Tailwind approach leads to crash

Aircraft: Quicksilver MX Sprint II Injuries: None. Location: Willits, Calif. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: It was the student pilot’s first solo flight in the airplane.

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Expectations and fixation

My first flight lesson was out of Virginia’s Leesburg Executive Airport (KJYO), inside the Dulles Class B airspace. We took off and performed some air work in the practice area. Then we headed back toward the airport. My instructor told me to find the airport so he could show me how to do a pattern entry. I looked and looked but I could not spot little Leesburg Airport. Finally I told him, “I can’t find the airport. It’s too small!”

My instructor was a recent émigré from New Delhi, India. In his most patient Indian-accented English he replied, “It is not the fault of the airport that you cannot see it. It is exactly the size it needs to be.”

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Landing stall for Piper

Aircraft: Piper Super Cub. Injuries: 1 Minor. Location: Fort Collins, Colo. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting to land at a private landing strip on his property.

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Low-altitude stall kills one

Aircraft: Bellanca Citabria. Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious. Location: Brockton, Mont. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: Witnesses said the airplane made two low-altitude, 360° turns, climbed rapidly, then descended into the ground.

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Loose canopy distracts pilot

Aircraft: Skeeter 1M. Injuries: 1 Fatal.Location: Oklahoma City. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was flying his homebuilt airplane on a cross-country flight when the canopy came loose.

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Link: ‘Crashing a Belite Airplane’

James Wiebe, owner of Belite Aircraft, has an opinion. He’s one of the more transparent people I’ve met. It doesn’t surprise me he wrote about the accident of a Belite UltraCub on his website. The details of this stall/spin accident, in which the pilot survived, is eye-opening.

Disoriented pilot crashes

Aircraft: Cessna 350 Corvalis. Injuries: 2 Fatal. Location: Salisbury, N.C. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: Before the airplane continued on a cross-country flight, a lineman at the airport spoke to the pilot, who did not have an instrument rating, and mentioned the marginal nature of the weather.

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Electrical failure for Piper

Aircraft: Piper Twin Comanche Injuries: None. Location: Roanoke, Texas. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was on a cross-country flight when he noticed that the alternators were producing just 9 volts. [Read more...]