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Prelim Report Issued In Warren Plane Crash

The National Transportation Safety Board issued a preliminary report on the ‘serious’ crash that resulted in this ultralight aircraft ending up in Akeley Run and its pilot suffering serious injuries. P-J file photo

WARREN, Pa. — The National Transportation Safety Board on Thursday released a preliminary report on a July 14 plane crash in Russell, Pa.

“On July 14, 2022, about 19:40 eastern daylight time, a Flightstar II-SC, N6116U, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at Shield Farm Airport (5PA6), Russell, Pennsylvania,” according to the report.

“The non-certificated pilot was seriously injured, and the passenger sustained minor injuries,” according to NTSB.

Neither a license nor a certificate is required to fly an ultralight, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

“The pilot and passenger began the takeoff roll on runway 4, a 1,650-foot-long turf runway with an upward slope,” according to the report. “A witness reported that the airplane turned left toward the trees immediately after takeoff and did not appear to be climbing. The airplane passed through the trees then disappeared.”

The report cited the passenger in the vehicle as saying, “We tried to make it over the trees, and we hit a tree. It didn’t climb like it normally does.”

“The airplane impacted the top of the trees about 300 feet north of the runway, then descended into a creek bed… where it came to rest on its left side,” according to the report.

“Examination of the airframe and engine by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the airplane’s left wing was fractured, and the fuselage exhibited substantial damage to the pilot’s side,” the report said. “Two of the three propeller blades were severed near the hub. Examination of the engine revealed no anomalies. The fuel tank contained about three gallons of fuel, and there was fuel in both carburetor bowls with no evidence of water or foreign debris.”

“The wreckage, which included a video camera that was mounted on the airplane’s left wing was retained for further examination,” according to the report.

Probable cause, findings, and recommendations are not part of the preliminary report and could take much longer to be reported, according to NTSB.

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