Some people in New York might have heard about a plane crash in Louisiana that happened on December 28. Five people died in the crash of the Piper PA-31T, which took off from Lafayette Regional Airport and was on its way to Atlanta. One person survived the crash and is in critical condition. Three people on the ground were also injured. According to a National Transportation Safety Board official, the plane never sent a distress call.
New York residents should know that small airplane crashes lead to around 500 fatalities every year. One such crash occurred in San Antonio on the evening of Dec. 1 and killed all three people inside.
New York residents may have been saddened to hear about nine members of a family dying in a plane crash as they were returning from a hunting trip. Authorities say that those killed include the pilot, children and other family members. In addition to the individuals who lost their life, three members of the family were seriously injured and taken to a local hospital.
New York readers might be concerned to learn that civil aviation deaths increased in 2018 according to the National Transportation Safety Board. Among the deaths was the first person to be killed on a commercial airliner in the United States in nine years.
Residents of New York may have heard that the National Transportation Safety Board discovered that the rate of fatal airplane crashes is higher in Alaska than the nationwide average. According to the NTSB's preliminary report for the calendar year of 2019, there have been 10 fatal airplane crashes. This isn't including the fatal crash at Unalaska Airport that occurred on Oct. 17, 2019, because there is no federal report for it yet.
New York residents should know that a small aircraft approaching Raleigh-Durham International Airport crashed near a creek in Umstead State Park on Oct. 27. The plane had disappeared on the radar that day at approximately 7:25 p.m., according to FAA air traffic control. This led to a search-and-rescue effort in the state park and the temporary closing of the airport runway.
New York residents will be saddened to hear about a twin-engine Peninsula Airways flight that crashed just off the runway at Alaska's Unalaska/Dutch Harbor Airport, killing one passenger. This was the first passenger death on a U.S. commercial flight in over a year.
On October 2, 2019, an old bomber plane crashed near Hartford, Connecticut, killing seven and injuring six. The plane, a Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress, was built in 1944 and designed to withstand battle damage. However, as New York residents can guess, the plane is not so safe for transporting passengers as it is not up to modern airplane safety standards.
For many aviation enthusiasts across New York and the nation, traveling in small, World War II-era planes and other aircraft is a dream come true, but a recent deadly Connecticut crash is calling into question the safety of these historic aircraft. At Kreindler & Kreindler LLP, we recognize that safety protocols were far different back in the 1940s than they are today, and we also recognize that traveling in these historic aircraft can bring with it considerable risk.
As previous posts in this blog have discussed, small plane crashes are more common than commercial airplane accidents. This is often due to pilots with less experience or the difficulty in keeping a smaller craft under control in adverse weather or mechanical emergency situations. Those in New York with a taste for adventure and thrill-seeking may want to consider the potential risks of such recreational aviation activities as paragliding.