NTSB releases preliminary report on fatal Huntsville plane crash

NTSB releases preliminary report on fatal Huntsville plane crash

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The National Transportation Safety Board released their initial report on a fatal plane crash at Huntsville International Airport that happened in June.

According to the one-page report, just before the crash, one of the three pilots on board requested a delay so they could switch out crew members. After that brief delay on the runway, they told air traffic control they would like to practice a few more landings before heading back to Birmingham, something that never happened.

After they were given clearance, the plane took off and no distress calls were ever made. The report cites airport security video that shows the plane going about a thousand feet down the runway before it disappeared from the camera's view.

At that point, the NTSB used witness accounts to piece together what happened next. They said they saw the plane climb about 50 to 200 feet with the landing gear retracted, then they saw the plane turn to the right by about 90 degrees, before the nose and right wing of the plane slammed into the ground.

All three men on board the plane died. The investigation remains ongoing, and because of that no official cause has been announced. An aviation mechanic said until the investigation is complete, there is no way to tell if the crash was the result of human error or a mechanical failure.

"There is a control surface that could have failed some way or another," said Harold McMurran. "It might have been engine failure. There are just many things that could have happened to cause the crash."

McMurran said the ultimate cause will be determined solely from the debris and remains of the plane.

The NTSB said investigators located the cockpit voice recorder and sent the device to a lab for review. A full report could take up to one year to complete. You can read the full preliminary report here - http://1.usa.gov/1rn6Y1f

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