NTSB issues preliminary report on two plane crashes - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

NTSB issues preliminary report on two plane crashes

Plane crash at Moontown Airport. Plane crash at Moontown Airport.

Investigators with the National Transportation and Safety Board released their preliminary report on two separate airplane crashes that killed four people in North Alabama in September.

One report dealt with the September 16th crash near the Moontown Airport in Brownsboro that killed 74-year-old George Gilbert Myers and 17-year-old Christian Schmitt.

The NTSB report said three planes were flying in formation and that the first two planes did a barrel roll but the plane piloted by Myers failed to make the roll.

The plane began to dive down and crashed.

The force of that crash actually caused one of the propellers to become embedded in the ground.

The NTSB also released preliminary information on the crash investigation in Cullman County that killed two Tennessee residents.

The Mooney M20M went down in a strong rainstorm after several course adjustments due to the harsh conditions.

The preliminary report includes the final radio transmissions from the flight:

At 1336, the pilot advised the controller that he was turning the airplane to 320 degrees, which the controller acknowledged.

At 1354, the controller issued the pilot a radio frequency change, to which, the pilot responded, "Unable, we're battling some pretty bad" (end of transmission.)

At 1359:01, the controller called the pilot, who responded with, "MAYDAY (unintelligible) MAY eight five alpha MAYDAY MAYDAY." There were no further transmissions from the airplane.

The airplane wreckage was found in rolling pastureland in Crane Hill.

Investigators found all flight control surfaces at the accident scene but flight control continuity could not be confirmed due to extensive fracturing of the plane and the fire in the wreckage.

No airplane recording devices could be found in the wreckage.

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