Posts Tagged fatal plane crash

Fatal plane crash in Wheeling – update

A report has been issued about the December 22, 2010 plane crash in Wheeling. The Daily Herald reports that:

A single-engine plane that crashed in a Wheeling parking lot last winter, killing a passenger and seriously injuring its pilot, had several mechanical issues in the months leading up to the fatal accident, according to a new report released by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The 1978 Beech C24R plane lost power Dec. 22, 2010, shortly after takeoff from Chicago Executive Airport and crashed in the parking lot of the Acco building near Wolf and Hintz roads.

The report does not blame the mechanical problems for the crash, nor does it issue any definitive findings about the cause. The NTSB is expected to release a report by June further detailing investigators’ conclusions.

The report states Cole initially was unable to get the engine started before takeoff that afternoon. Even after it was started with the help of a mechanic, a witness told NTSB investigators the engine did not sound right and that he heard what sounded like “burbles.”

 The complete article can be found HERE which contains a significant amount of information gathered in the fact finding segment of the investigation. had other postings HERE and HERE.

Tags: , , , , ,

Plane crashes in Riverwoods – update

The National Transportation Safety Board has released a brief preliminary summary report about the plane crash in Riverwoods on November 29th. Other postings on the crash can be found HERE, HERE, and HERE.

NTSB Identification: CEN12FA086
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Monday, November 28, 2011 in Riverwoods, IL
Aircraft: PIPER PA-31-350, registration: N59773
Injuries: 3 Fatal,2 Serious.

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.

On November 28, 2011, about 2250 central standard time, Lifeguard N59773, a Piper PA-31-350, an emergency medical services (EMS) flight, operated by Trans North Aviation Ltd, sustained substantial damage when it impacted trees and terrain in Riverwoods, Illinois. The pilot declared an emergency, reported that the airplane was out of fuel and the flight was coasting direct to the destination airport, Chicago Executive Airport (PWK), near Wheeling, Illinois. The airline transport pilot and two passengers sustained fatal injuries. The pilot-rated passenger and medical crewmember received serious injuries. The non-scheduled domestic on-demand passenger flight was conducted under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. An activated instrument flight rules flight plan was on file. The flight departed from the Jesup-Wayne County Airport (JES), near Jesup, Georgia, about 1858.

Fueling records show an airplane was fueled at JES with 165 gallons of aviation gasoline (avgas).

Preliminary review of a recording of the approach controller’s frequency revealed that the pilot requested to fly direct to the outer marker navigation aid. The controller indicated a heading for the flight to conduct an instrument approach. The pilot then declared an emergency. The controller inquired if the flight was still heading to PWK. The pilot reported that he was unable, out of fuel, and that the airplane was “coasting.” The controller asked if the field was insight. The pilot reported negative and asked for the cloud tops. The controller indicated that the cloud deck was 1,400 feet overcast. The pilot responded that the flight was coasting down and that the pilot would report visual contact. The pilot further indicated that the flight was flying direct to PWK. The controller advised a low altitude alert and the flight acknowledged that alert. The controller asked if the pilot had the field in sight. The pilot reported affirmative. The flight was cleared for the visual approach to runway 16 and the pilot was informed to cancel the flight’s IFR flight plan. The controller further indicated that the change to airport’s advisory frequency was approved. There was no further recorded radio communication with the EMS flight.

The Riverwoods Police Department received an initial 911 phone call about 2250. The first responders found the wreckage near a residence northwest of the intersection or Portwine and Orange Brace roads.

The pilot held an airline transport certificate and he held a first-class medical certificate.

The pilot-rated passenger held a commercial pilot certificate and he held a second-class medical certificate

N59773, was a Piper PA-31-350, Chieftain, twin-engine, retractable landing gear, conventional semi-monocoque design airplane with serial number 31-7652044. The airplane had a maximum gross weight of 7,000 pounds. A 350-horsepower Lycoming TIO-540-J2BD engine and a 350-horsepower Lycoming LTIO-540-J2BD engine powered the airplane.

At 2252, the recorded weather at PWK was: Wind 350 degrees at 9 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition overcast 1,400 feet; temperature 2 degrees C; dew point -2 degrees C; altimeter 29.99 inches of mercury.

At 2352, the recorded weather at PWK was: Wind 360 degrees at 9 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition overcast 1,400 feet; temperature 2 degrees C; dew point -2 degrees C; altimeter 29.97 inches of mercury.

The airplane impacted trees and terrain in a heavily treed residential neighborhood about 3 nautical miles northeast of PWK. The wreckage path was about 250 feet in length from the first found impact tree to the main wreckage on a magnetic heading of about 130 degrees. The airplane was found fragmented along the path. The left propeller separated from its engine and was found 32 feet west of the main wreckage. The airplane fuselage came to rest facing about 280 degrees magnetic. An on-site inspection confirmed that the fuselage, empennage, wings, and all flight control surfaces were located within the wreckage debris path. The landing gear were found in the up position in their wheel wells.

The left and right throttle levers were found in the full forward position. Both left and right mixture levers were found in the forward rich position. The left and right propeller levers were found in the forward high RPM position. The Hobbs meter read 2848.8 hours. All four magneto switches were in the on position. The left fuel boost pump switch was in the on position and the right fuel boost pump switch was in the off position. Both the left and right fuel tank selectors were selecting their respective inboard fuel tanks. The crossfeed valve was found in the on position. All fuel caps were in place in their filler necks. Approximately 1.5 ounces of a liquid consistent with avgas was found within the airplane fuel system. All four electric fuel pumps were operational when electrical power was applied to them. The flap jackscrew was consistent with retracted flaps in the up position. Left and right engine control continuity was established. Flight control continuity was established.

Both engines’ crankshafts were rotated and each engine exhibited gear and valve train continuity. All cylinders produced thumb compression and suction. Both dual magnetos produced sparks at all leads. All removed sparkplugs exhibited the appearance of normal combustion. Both engines’ turbocharger impellers spun when rotated by hand. The left and right propellers were found in the feather position.

Images from the scene can be found HERE.

Tags: , , , , ,

Plane crashes in Riverwoods – update

Another article about Monday’s plane crash comes from the Antigo Daily out of Wisconsin. Antigo is near Mattoon, home to flight medic Maynard Blodgett who survived the crash.

A Mattoon man is recovering in a Chicago-area hospital today after his medical transport airplane crashed Monday evening,

Maynard Blodgett, an emergency medical technician with the Birnamwood fire department, was working as a medic on the Eagle River-based Trans North Aviation flight when it crashed in suburban Chicago, killing three of the five people on board.

According to WSAW-TV, Blodgett contacted Birnamwood Fire Chief Randy Berger on Tuesday to let the department know he was involved in the crash and recovering at a hospital.

The plane was carrying patient John Bialek, 80, of Streamwood, Ill. and his 75-year-old wife, Ilomae Bialek, as well as Blodgett and two pilots, according to Ron Schaberg, the aviation company’s president. The Bialeks were both killed in the crash.

The pilot had filed an instrument flight plan, meaning the plane was being tracked on radar and the pilot was in constant contact with controllers as it flew toward Chicago, Cory said.

The Bialeks were flying back to Chicago from their home in West Palm Beach, Fla. to be closer to relatives as he was being treated for a blood infection.

Tags: , , , , ,

Fatal plane crash in Wheeling – update

The Daily Herald published an article today with information about the engine of the ill-fated aircraft that crashed this week after taking off from the Chicago Executive Airport (formerly Palwaukee Airport) in Wheeling, IL including the following excerpts.

The owner of the plane that crashed Wednesday afternoon in Wheeling said in a statement Thursday the plane’s engine had gotten a major overhaul over the past few months, but he understood it was ready to fly.

The engine was sent to a repair shop in Michigan and returned to Chicago Executive Airport in Wheeling where it was reinstalled.

To read the complete article, visit the Daily Herald HERE.

See our previous post with images HERE.

Tags: , , , ,