Preliminary report issued on fatal plane crash
STEVENSVILLE — The National Transportation Safety Board has issued a preliminary report on the April 19 crash of a small plane on Kent Island that killed two people.
In the posting on its website, the NTSB said the information in the report came from its investigators and “data obtained from various sources.” It emphasized that because the information is preliminary, it is subject to change and may contain errors that would be corrected in a final report.
Richard Hess, 63, the pilot, and Janet Metz, 56, a passenger, both of Ellicott City, died when the plane went down in a field near the intersection of Route 8 and Kent Manor Drive. The location was about 750 feet short of runway 29 at Bay Bridge Airport and “visual meteorological conditions prevailed,” the NTSB said.
The preliminary report stated that the Vans RV12, registered to Yoxford Air, LLC, took off from Bay Bridge Airport at approximately 12:10 p.m. and flew southeast for about 25 miles before returning to the airport 30 minutes later. Initial radar data indicated the plane approached the “airport traffic pattern” from the south at about 1,000 feet, headed for runway 29, according to the NTSB.
“After turning from base to final, several witnesses reported that the airplane looked unusually low on final approach,” the report stated. “The nose pitched up briefly but the airplane did not appear to gain any altitude. The left wing appeared to rise, followed by a sharp turn to the right and steep nose down attitude before disappearing behind trees.”
The plane hit the ground and cartwheeled for about 150 feet before coming to rest upright, the NTSB said. “A post-accident fire consumed the fuselage before it was extinguished by fire rescue personnel about ten minutes after the accident,” according to the report. No one on the ground was hurt.
The wreckage has been retained by the NTSB for further examination, the report said. An NTSB spokesman said investigations of this type can take from a year to 18 months to complete before there is a final report.
Police and firefighters at the scene of a plane crash on Kent Island early Tuesday afternoon. The plane went down in a field just east of Route 8 near the intersection with Kent Manor Drive.