Accidents & Incidents, [2015Q1]

The following table presents a chronology for the first quarter of 2015, showing all known ‘fatal’ U.S. civil aviation accidents, as well as a few selected non-fatal accidents and incidents. Data shows date (weekends are underlined), location, number of fatalities, and a brief synopsis. Click on the blue dates to see additional info; click on red dates to see an aiREFORM Post/Analysis about the incident. For all accidents, further records are quickly found by searching for the accident date within NTSB’s Monthly Aviation Accident Database. Those accidents within the most recent two weeks may not be listed yet at NTSB; they are listed from news reports and from the quickly updated databases at Aviation-Safety Network. The following color-codes are added to aid in tracking accident trends. Midair includes NMAC’s. EMS/Commercial/Ag includes flights in-service or related to that flight function. The last color-code includes non-fully-certified aircraft such as experimental, owner-built, ultralights, paragliders, etc.: MIDAIRATCEMSFATIGUECOMMERCIALAGWXkit-exp.-(etc.)

Fatal Accidents:
Fatalities:
Year:
Q1
Q2
Q3
Q4
Q1
Q2
Q3
Q4
2012
80
125
2013
52
63
62
50
97
98
106
90
2014
33
76
87
52
58
115
134
76
2015
44
..
..
..
65
..
..
..
totals updated 4/1/2015
Date
LOCATION
FATALS
Time, Details & Links

3/31/2015

Pleasanton, KS

2

(~4:00PM) A kitbuilt Zodiac CH601 XL crashes shortly after takeoff from a private airstrip. Both occupants die, a 67-yr-old pilot and his 57-yr-old male passenger. [article]

3/30/2015

Saucier, MS

2

(~3:00PM) A Bell 206L helicopter under contract with the USFS to support a controlled burn crashes, killing the pilot and one other worker. A third occupant is taken to the hospital with serious injuries. [article]

3/29/2015

West Chester, PA

2

(~1:34PM) A Piper Cherokee PA28 takes off from Brandywine Airport [KOQN], and almost immediately crashes. A fire erupts and both male occupants are killed. The crash site was in a wooded vacant lot, between houses and an apartment complex, roughly 75-yards away. [article]

3/29/2015

Tuscaloosa, AL

0

(~1:20PM) At the Tuscaloosa Regional Air Show (at [KTCL]), Team Aerodynamix flies a formation of eleven kitbuilt RV aircraft. A midair collision occurs between an RV8 and an RV6, and both land immediately. A photograph shows the RV6 propeller, which struck the fuselage of the RV8, was substantially damaged, with half of one blade torn off. [article]

3/29/2015

Orange, VA

1

(~9:45AM) A 16-yr-old student pilot crashes near his point of departure, Orange County Airport [KOMH], while on a solo flight. He was flying a 1974 model Piper Cherokee, recently acquired by the local flight school. [article]

3/29/2015

Halifax, NS, Canada (~12:43AM) Air Canada Flight #624: An Airbus A320 with 138 people on board departs Toronto at 9:05PM. The pilots know that other flights have been cancelled due to snow, wind, and low ceilings at their destination. They make numerous circuits in a holding pattern 30-miles west of Halifax, choose not to go to a safer alternate airport, and then make a Localizer approach to Runway 5. They hit a powerline near the airport, then crash into the localizer antenna, causing both engines to separate. Miraculously, there is no fire and no fatalities, but 23 are reported injured. [A-S.net]

3/28/2015

Bone Gap, IL

1

(~6:30PM) An ultralight takes off on a maiden flight, does two circles, then dives into a cornfield. The 36-yr-old male pilot is killed the crash. [article]

3/27/2015

Pine River, MN

2

(~6:25PM) A Piper J4 Cub (1940 model) departs on a local flight from the Pine River Regional Airport [KPWC]. Witnesses see it flying low and slow just before it crashes in a nearby field. The pilot and occupant, ages 43 and 32, are both killed. [article]

3/27/2015

Jean, NV

2

(~2:50PM) A family from Farmington, NM on a Las Vegas vacation signs up for a set of ‘lessons’ from a company called ‘Las Vegas Hang Gliding’. Their 11-yr-old son is excited to ride tandem with the 55-yr-old male company owner and ‘instructor’, so he goes up as the first ‘student’. The hang glider takes off under tow by a truck. The truck driver assumes the hang glider has disconnected and makes an abrupt turn, causing the hang glider to dive into the ground. The pilot dies on-site; the child dies while the family drives him to a hospital. Later reports indicate the company was not registered as a business or to use the BLM site, but had secured protection via an LLC registration in January. FAA is not investigating, asserting that the unpowered flight in tow by a truck makes this a non-aviation accident. [article]

3/26/2015

Meagher County, MT

1

(~1:00PM) A middle-aged Canadian couple takes off in a Piper Saratoga, intending a long flight from Great Falls [KGTF] to Scottsdale, AZ [KSDL]. The flight crashes into the Big Belt Mountains, killing the pilot. His wife uses a cellphone to call in the crash and is airlifted to the hospital with injuries. [article]

3/25/2015

Spring, TX

0

(~4:00PM) ATC clears a Progressive Aerodyne Searey amphibian plane to land south on the water landing area at the privately-owned David Wayne Hooks Airport [KDWH]. Neither the tower controller nor the pilot, who was believed to be training, recognize that the landing gear was not retracted. The flight was substantially damaged when it crashed during the landing. [article]

3/24/2015

Barcelonnette, France (~10:41AM) Germanwings Flight 9525: The captain of an Airbus A320 on a scheduled flight from Barcelona to Dusseldorf leaves the flight deck to use the restroom. The flight is cruising at FL380 on a regular route in normal weather conditions. The copilot then apparently dials an altitude of 100-feet into the FMS autopilot. An automated descent commences, with a steady descent rate at around 3,400 ft-per-minute. The copilot ignores the pilot’s repeated requests for return access, and the pilot is unable to break the access door, which had been reinforced per FAA requirements after 9/11/2001. Roughly nine minutes later the A320 impacts steep rocky terrain in the Alps. All 144 passengers and six crew died when the aircraft disintegrated. [A-S.net]

3/22/2015

Orlando, FL

3

(~2:33PM) A 48-yr-old pilot departs Orlando Executive Airport [KORL] with his 55-yr-old wife and a 42-yr-old male friend. Three minutes later, the pilot radios ATC to return. The Robinson R44 helicopter then crashes into a 2-story guesthouse in the College Park neighborhood, near downtown. Just the week before, there had been nine houseguests. The flight appears to have been for local sightseeing. The pilot and both passengers died. [article]

3/22/2015

Woodward, OK

1

(~1:56PM) A 56-yr-old male pilot is killed when his weight-shift Sabre trike crashes. At east one witness indicates the ultralight fell 80-100 feet. [article]

3/17/2015

Hueco Tanks SP, TX

1

(~afternoon) A Cessna Skylane registered to Brentco Aerial Patrols Inc. fails to close a flightplan on what was possibly a commercial contract air mission. The wrecked aircraft and deceased pilot are found shortly after dawn the next morning. [article]

3/16/2015

Potterville, GA

1

(~4:00PM) A Kolb Twinstar ultralight crashes, killing the 52-yr-old male pilot. [article]

3/12/2015

Lake Eufaula, OK

1

(~11:25PM) A 13-yr-old boy is injured in a McAlester vehicle-pedestrian accident, so the local life-flight takes him for treatment in Tulsa. The HEMS crew of three is nearly finished with their return flight when their AS-350 helicopter crashes into trees west of Lake Eufaula, killing the pilot. Weather was deteriorating and the moon was not yet up, so it was very dark flight conditions. [article]

3/12/2015

Pembroke Pines, FL

0

(~1:31PM) A Piper PA25 loses power while towing a banner. The pilot crash-lands in the Everglades and noses over hard. He then gets out and sits on the belly of the aircraft for a later rescue. The aircraft was operated by Aerial Banners, at the North Perry Airport [KHWO], which has had numerous forced landings in recent years. [article]

3/10/2015

Eglin, FL (~8:30PM) Army Helo Crash: A Louisiana Army National Guard UH60 helicopter disappears while carrying seven Marines from North Carolina on a routine training mission in foggy flight conditions. Debris is found the next day, in the middle of the Santa Rosa Sound, near Eglin Air Force Base. All eleven on board were killed in the accident. [article]

3/10/2015

Waycross, GA

0

(~3:00PM) A 63-yr-old pilot flies a 1968 Cessna Skylane, departing Silva, NC for LaBelle, FL. He stops to refuel at Waycross, GA. He then attempts a takeoff, apparently unaware that he is using a taxiway instead of the runway. The takeoff is aborted and the aircraft noses over hard when it hits soft soil beyond the taxiway end. The 83-yr-old male passenger, also a pilot, suffers a forehead laceration injury. [article]

3/10/2015

Cedar Rapids, IA

0

(~4:45AM) A Citation C550 jet used for air charter flies from Chicago Midway [KMDW] to Iowa City, IA in the early morning hours, but diverts due to very low weather conditions. Conditions are not much better at the alternate airport, Cedar Rapids [KCID]. The pilot lands and the aircraft ends up stuck off the edge of the runway. FAA investigators conclude the aircraft ‘slid off the runway’, implying a taxi mishap, but the recorded weather had visibility near zero, suggesting a dangerous landing below safe minimums. [ASIAS]

3/9/2015

Chesnee, SC

1

(~6:50PM) A 50-yr-old male pilot takes a female passenger up in an Air Creation weight-shift trike ultralight. They crash into a tree and he falls roughly 80-feet while attempting to climb down. She is later rescued by emergency crews. [article]

3/8/2015

Kosciusko, MS

2

(~4:50PM) Two men, ages 52 and 50, are killed when the Bellanca Decathlon they are flying crashes adjacent to a rural road, coming to rest vertically at the base of a telephone pole. News footage shows what appears to include impact at the base of the telephone pole, near a forest area. [article]

3/7/2015

Pratt, KS

1

(~afternoon) A kitbuilt RV-6 has a prop strike during a landing to a private strip. The aircraft noses over, killing the 85-yr-old commercial-rated pilot. [article]

3/6/2015

St. Louis, MO

1

(~11:13PM) A Eurocopter EC-130 helicopter is being repositioned from the ARCH Air Medical Services base to St. Louis University Hospital when it crashes in a parking lot. The crashed helicopter erupts in flames, killing the 52-yr-old male pilot. [article]

3/5/2015

Santa Monica, CA

0

(~2:25PM) immediately after taking off in a Ryan Recruit (WWII era trainer), actor Harrison Ford calls ATC to advise he is having engine difficulties and making an immediate return to the airport. He clips a tree over a golf course and crashes onto a fairway. Doctors playing through assist in removing him from the crumpled aircraft, and treating him prior to an extended hospital visit. [article]

3/4/2015

Norfolk, VA

3

(~4:13AM) A Mooney MO20 crashes in the Enchanted Forest section of the Norfolk Botanical Gardens. The aircraft had departed Key West, FL in the evening, made a fuel stop in Palatka, FL, and continued on with a plan to land at Suffolk, VA at around 3:00AM. It appears the flight diverted to land at Norfolk, due to low visibility at Suffolk. Weather was poor at Norfolk, too. The flight made a series of attempted approaches and then was set up by ATC to land on Runway 23. The crash was more than four hours after taking off from Palatka. [article]

3/2/2015

Boynton Beach, FL

2

(~12:55PM) A Colyaer Freedom S100 (amphibious plane manufactured in Spain) takes off from Lantana [KLNA] and crashes west of Boynton Beach. The aircraft is destroyed by post-impact fire, killing both occupants. [article]

3/2/2015

Sebring, FL

1

(~morning?) An experimental, amateur-built aircraft crashes near a subdivision, adjacent to the Sebring Airport. The 76-yr-old male pilot is killed. [article]

3/1/2015

Santa Barbara, CA

1

(~12:30PM) A 60-yr-old veterinarian (and avid paraglider enthusiast) takes his teenage daughter on a tandem flight off the Santa Ynez Mountains. He forgets to secure his legs into the tandem harness, then falls 1,000 feet to his death. The daughter is injured when the uncontrolled paraglider eventually crashes into a tree. [article]

2/25/2015

Helotes, TX

1

(~4:24PM) A commercial pilot flies his kitbuilt scaled version Thunder Mustang (a 3/4-scale P51 replica) over the Government Canyon State Natural Area, northwest of San Antonio. A nearby resident reports seeing the aircraft do a regular routine, passing at low level, going nose-up and inverting before initiating a turn. But, this time the resident does not see the turn happen and instead hears a loud thud sound. The aircraft impacts terrain at a high-speed, killing the pilot. [article][NTSB]

2/22/2015

Spokane, WA

1

(~1:30PM) A Piper PA46 Malibu from Alberta arrives at the Felts Field Airport [KSFF]. The pilot clears Customs and adds fuel, then takes off to continue his trip to Stockton, CA [KSCK]. Shortly after takeoff he loses power and a forced landing impacts a railroad grade. The pilot is quickly removed from the plane and taken to the hospital, where he later died. Subsequent news stories suggest the wrong fuel may have been added during the airport stop (Jet-A, instead of the 100 low-lead used in his engine). [article]

2/11/2015

Miami-Dade, FL

4

(~2:30PM) A Beechcraft 1900 registered in Venezuala takes off from Runway 27L at the Miami Executive Airport [KTMB] and the pilot reports engine problems. The aircraft crashes near homes, west of the airport, during an attempted return. [article][A-S.N]

2/11/2015

Greensboro, NC

1

(~2:15PM) A Piper Cherokee takes off from Air Harbor Airport and crashes into a nearby forest. The pilot, a retired healthcare CEO, age 74, dies in the accident. [article]

2/11/2015

Greeley, CO

2

(~2:00PM) A kitbuilt Wheeler Express crashes southeast of the Greely Weld County Airport [KGXY], leaving charred grass and a scattered debris field. [article]

2/5/2015

Slaton, TX

0

(~3:10PM) An AT602 Air Tractor (crop-duster) takes off from the Slaton airport near Lubbock [KLBB], reportedly on a ferry flight back to Kansas. Power is lost and the 33-yr-old male pilot attempts to return to the airport, but the aircraft lands short in a field. The gear sinks into the soil and the aircraft flips over, but the pilot exits without injury. [article]

2/5/2015

Andrews, TX

0

(~12:45AM) A Beechcraft BE36 departs the Mid Valley Airpark at Los Lunas, NM [E98] for an 80-minute flight to the airport in Andrews, TX [E11]. The 42-yr-old pilot advises ATC he is accumulating ice. He soon loses the ability to control the descent and crashes near the airport. Three other adults were on board, all survived with some injuries. A cold front had passed through Andrews at around 5:00PM, creating low overcast. The reported ceiling at Andrews had fallen to 900-feet one hour prior to departure, and fell lower to just 700-feet at the time of the accident. [article]

2/4/2015

Argyle, TX

1

(~9:10PM) A Cessna C441 twin-prop flies from Willmar, MN to Denton, TX [KDTO] and sets up for what appears to have been the RNAV Runway 36 approach. The flight crashes near a school, roughly 6-miles south of the runway. One hour earlier, there had been a frontal passage with strong gusting north winds, low overcast and cold light rain. The 52-yr-old pilot was a successful Domino’s Pizza franchisee and had moved with his wife and six children, ages 5 to 20, from Minnesota to Flower Mound, TX, one year earlier. [article]

2/4/2015

Lubbock, TX

1

(~7:35PM) A Piper Malibu PA46 flying inbound from New Mexico makes a wide right 270-degree turn to line up on a long final, northbound to land at the Lubbock Airport [KLBB]. Instead, the flight impacts an 814-ft TV station antenna or guywire, then crashes to the ground nearly 7-miles south of the airport. The TV antenna collapses, and the pilot, a local doctor, dies in the accident. A cold front had passed through in the mid-afternoon, and at the time of the accident, airport conditions were transitioning into what became six hours of light freezing drizzle. The same cold front had passed through the Hobbs, NM area at around noon. [article]

2/4/2015

Taipei, Taiwan (~10:54AM) TRANSASIA FLIGHT #235: An ATR-72 departs the Taipei Songshan Airport on a scheduled flight to Kinmen Island, just across the border from Xiamen, China. The flight reportedly climbed to nearly 1,500-feet when the pilot radioed a ‘Mayday’ with the left engine flamed out. The aircraft then descended, banking left, and clipped a taxi on a bridge before crashing into the Keelung River. At least 31 of 58 died, but there were some survivors. [A-SN] UPDATE, 2/8/2015: — 40 fatalities

1/31/2015

Wasilla, AK

0

(~1:00PM) A Piper Super Cub operated by state wildlife authorities collided midair with a privately owned Piper Super Cub, east of the runway for South Hollywood Airport [67AK]. One wing was reportedly clipped, and both aircraft crashed into a nearby forest. Rescue crews transported at least two injured men to a nearby hospital, with injuries including a chest penetration by a 2-inch diameter tree trunk. [article][article2]

1/28/2015

Lantana, FL

0

(~1:00PM) A midair collision occurred between a Robinson R22 helicopter and a Piper Arrow, causing substantial damage to the helicopter. The Palm Beach County Park Airport [KLNA] has no control tower but is relatively busy with numerous flight schools and averaging 347 daily operations. One month earlier, another instructional helicopter flight crashed, killing the instructor. No news articles have yet been found about this midair collision.

1/28/2015

Lake Texoma, OK

1

(~11:00AM) A local fishing guide dies when his RV-9A kitbuilt plane crashes into a large reservoir along the border with Texas, near the Alberta Creek marina. [article][map]

1/26/2015

Hood Canal, WA

1

(~12:50PM) An airplane, reportedly red and white (and later established to be an RV-7 missing from the Tacoma Narrows Airport [KTIW]), is seen doing aerobatic maneuvers over the Hood Canal area, near Seabeck. Callers reported it crashed into the water. Debris was found hours later, including a drvier’s license. The water depth in the vicinity is 500-600 feet. [article1][article2]

1/26/2015

Erie, CO

2

(~12:00PM) Witnesses hear a popping sound, followed by a crash and an explosion, just to the left side of the approach end of runway 15, at the airpark in Erie [KEIK]. An Enstrom 280FX helicopter is destroyed. FAA’s spokesperson identified this as a training flight. Both occupants were killed. [article]NTSB Preliminary

1/26/2015

Hoard, WI

1

(~10:35AM) A Cessna Skylane takes off from Menominee, WI for Litchfield, MN. It climbs to a cruise altitude of 8,000 feet but encounters icing conditions. The flight profile shows a gradual climb to 10,000 feet, then an apparent uncontrolled descent, likely due to ice accumulation. [article]

1/25/2015

White Plains, NY

0

(~1:40PM) JetBlue Flight 94, an Airbus A320 flying from Orlando, FL to White Plains, NY, reportedly took evasive actions during a near-collision, while setting up to land. [article]

1/23/2015

westbound over Kansas

0

(~8:30AM) A De Havilland Dash-8 turboprop, flying as United Express but operated by Republic, takes off from Kansas City for Denver. The left engine is shut down after indicating low oil pressure, and the crew levels at 20,000 feet. The crew turns around and makes a safe landing at the point of origin. A passenger snapped a good photograph, showing the shut-down engine while in flight. [article]

1/22/2015

Lakeland, FL

2

(~9:30AM) A Piper Apache PA23 crashes into a warehouse, killing a 62-yr-old flight instructor and his 41-yr-old male student. The light twin aircraft was registered with the Tailwheels Etc. Flight School, based at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport [KLAL][article]

1/20/2015

Clark Mountain, CA

2

(~8:00PM) A Beech BE36 takes off from California City [L71], intending to fly to Henderson, NV [KHND]. The flight reportedly received radar flight following services from FAA controllers, but disappeared from radar. Weather may have been a factor. A search located the wreckage at near 5,000-feet elevation on the side of Clark Mountain, which is ten miles west of the Invanpah solar farm. [MAP] [article]

1/17/2015

Jamaica, NY

0

(~10:30PM) JetBlue Flight 1295 was cleared for takeoff from Runway 22R when another aircraft, Carribbean Airlines Flight 526, began to taxi across the runway downfield. The Caribbean flight had just landed on Runway 22R, but the controller never issued any taxi or hold instructions. Instead of cancelling the takeoff clearance, the controller tried to communicate with the taxiing flight crew. Evidently, the JetBlue pilots saw the conflict and aborted the takeoff.

1/16/2015

Molokai, HI

0

(~4:00PM) An air tour in a Cessna Skyhawk suffers a loss of engine power. The pilot makes a forced landing into rough, forested terrain. All survive, including the three Japanese tourists, though the mother is hospitalized with serious injuries. [article]

1/16/2015

Woodlands, TX

1

(~12:30PM) A kitbuilt helicopter, identified as a Safari Aero Sport, crashes onto a wooden fence. A witness reports hearing a sound of ‘metal scraping’, then sees the tail rotor disintegrate and the helicopter drop from 300-feet altitude. The deceased pilot was a 51-yr-old Catholic church deacon. [article]

1/16/2015

Ft. Valley, GA

1

(~11:30AM) A Luscombe crashes in a field near the Cameron Field Airport [GA81], killing a man who was reportedly a flight instructor, and injuring one other occupant. [article1] – [article2]

1/16/2015

Sebring, FL

2

(~11:00AM) An Aero Adventure kitbuilt amphibious plane crashed next to the main runway, roughly 200 yards from the main exhibition area, at the U.S. Sport Aviation Expo annual event. Witnesses say it was ten minutes into a demonstration flight. [article]

1/13/2015

Vero Beach, FL

1

(~8:50PM) A Cessna C152 is found crashed in waist-deep water, twenty feet from the shoreline, 3-miles east of the airport [KVRB]. The female pilot was killed in the crash. Dense fog was reported during the search. The 8:53PM weather observation at KVRB was: temp/dew 67/64 wind N 12 visibility 10.00 ceiling BKN020 altimeter 30.10. At the same time, weather to the south at KFPR was similar, but with a 600-foot broken layer. [article]

1/11/2015

Prineville, OR

1

(~2:10PM) An RV-9 kitbuilt plane impacts terrain northwest of the Prineville Airport [S39] immediately after taking off. The pilot, reportedly from Bend, is killed. Details to be added later, as they emerge. [article]

1/11/2015

Adams County, CO

1

(~12:45PM) Residents near the Horth Airstrip place emergency calls after hearing what sounds like an aircraft in distress. The wreckage of a Piper (type unknown) is located in a field. The sole occupant dies in the crash. [article]

1/9/2015

Great Salt Lake, UT

1

(~PM) A 69-yr-old physician flies his Cirrus SR22 as part of a regular recreational habit. His family reports when he fails to return, and a search is started late at night. The wreckage and body are found around 5AM, just off Stansbury Island in an area called Eardley Spit. [article]

1/9/2015

Van Nuys, CA

1

(~1:14PM) A Lancair 320, with an apparent base at Scottsdale, AZ, takes off from the Van Nuys Airport [KVNY] and crashes just blocks away. The aircraft bursts apart, coming to rest mostly on the curb area at the southwest corner of the Vanowen and Hayvenhurst street intersection. The pilot, estimated to be in his early forties, is killed, but no others are injured. [article]

1/7/2015

Denton, TX

0

(~7:50AM) A student pilot and flight instructor take off from the airport at Denton, TX [KDTO] for early morning practice in a Cessna 152. They lose engine power and make a forced landing onto a two-lane road, but clip a powerline in the process. Power is lost to roughly fifty homes, but soon restored. There are no injuries. [article]

1/2/2015

Suwanee, KY

4

(~5:55PM) A father flies his family in a Piper Seneca (twin prop), from their home in south central Illinois to Key West, Florida, with a fuel stop in Tallahassee. After a weeklong vacation, they fly home, again with a fuel stop in Tallahassee. Their destination is the Mt. Vernon Airport [KMVN], near their home. Nearly three hours into the second leg of the fllght, the pilot advises ATC he is having engine problems. He diverts for a landing at the Kentucky Dam State Park Airport [M34], but crashes in forested area, 7-miles short of the airport. The father (age 48), mother (age 45), one daughter (age 9) and a cousin (age 14) are all killed, but miraculously a 7-yr-old girl survives. She then walks roughly a half mile, across rough terrain and knocks on the door of a rural home. The homeowner (age 71) is shocked to see her, but immediately helps clean her wounds. [article]

…links to other quarters…

2012Q1 Fatals2012Q2 Fatals2012Q3 Fatals2012Q4 Fatals
2013Q1 Fatals2013Q2 Fatals2013Q3 Fatals2013Q4 Fatals
2014Q1 Fatals2014Q2 Fatals2014Q3 Fatals2014Q4 Fatals
2015Q1 Fatals2015Q2 Fatals2015Q3 Fatals2015Q4 Fatals