Mon Jan 26 10:45:21 PST 2015
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NTSB Report Indicates No Mechanical Failure In 2014 Fatal Plane Crash
Kim Allen

A preliminary report from the NTSB indicates no mechanical failure in a plane crash that claimed the lives of two Wiregrass residents in 2014. The Piper J3C-65 took off from the Headland Airport on September 16, 2014, bound for Eufaula. The plane never arrived, setting off an 8-day search for the missing plane and it's pilots. The wreckage of the plane was eventually found at the bottom of the Chattahoochee River. Haase and Marlowe were killed in the crash. This is only a preliminary report. The cause of the crash is still under investigation. The preliminary report from the NTSB is included below. 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. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report. On September 16, 2014, about 1140 eastern daylight time (EDT), a Piper J3C-65, N95480, collided with the Chattahoochee River near Fort Gaines, Georgia. The airline transport pilot and pilot-rated passenger were fatally injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day, visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Headland Municipal Airport (0J6), Headland. Alabama about 1000 central daylight time (CDT) and was destined for Weedon Field (EUF), Eufaula, Alabama. After the flight did not arrive at its destination, a search and rescue operation was initiated. The wreckage was located on September 23, 2014 in a remote area in 10 to 15 feet of water. The wreckage was recovered on September 24, 2014. An initial examination of the wreckage revealed that all major structural components of the airframe and engine were located and recovered. Flight control continuity was confirmed from the ailerons, elevator, and rudder to the cockpit controls. The engine remained attached to the firewall. The fuel tank was ruptured from impact forces. Internal continuity of the engine was confirmed. Both propeller blade tips were broken free and the remaining blade roots were splintered due to impact forces.

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