UPDATE: Before the Crash: Dillingham Aviator's Last Letter to Airports Division
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CASE STATEMENT ON PLANE CRASH TODAY AT DILLINGHAM AIRFIELD
News Release from Office of Rep Ed Case, February 22, 2020
(Honolulu, HI) - Congressman Ed Case (HI-01) today released this statement in the aftermath of the small plane crash this morning at Dillingham Airfield on the island of O‘ahu:
“It’s unbelievable that our island community has suffered now a fourth fatal tragedy involving a tour helicopter/small aircraft in less than a year,” said Case.
“I again join with the rest of Hawai‘i in extending my heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of those who were lost in this morning’s incident.
“While it will probably be more than a year until officials are able to determine the cause of this crash, the Federal Aviation Administration cannot treat this as an isolated incident as it did with the previous three, but must immediately ask itself the hard question it has thus far avoided of whether existing tour helicopter/small aircraft regulations are simply inadequate to protect the safety of those in the aircraft and of the over one million of us that they fly over every day.
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From HDOT, Feb 22, 2020:
HDOT and multiple agencies and first responders, are on scene of a fatal crash that occurred outside the Dillingham Airfield this morning. The plane's tail number is N65070. Federal authorities have been notified and will lead the investigation. Additional information to follow.
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KITV: Airplane in deadly Mokuleia crash involved in another incident 7 years ago
The Cessna 305A airplane involved in Saturday's fatal crash was the same plane that was subject to a NTSB investigation in 2013 after a hard landing.
On November 2, 2013, the plane operated by the Honolulu Soaring Club, upon landing at Dillingham Airfield, nosed over and came to an abrupt stop upside down--the same position in Saturday's crash that killed two men.
The aircraft sustained substantial damage to the rudder, both wings and lift struts. The pilot received minor injuries.
An FAA safety inspector determined that the right brake malfunctioned and the tire could not rotate. After follow-up examinations, the FAA inspector found the airplane operated normally.
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2013 Crash -- NTSB Factual Report
On November 7, 2013, about 1320 Hawaii standard time, a Cessna 305 airplane, N65070, sustained substantial damage when it nosed over during landing at Dillingham Airfield (HDH), Mokuleia, Hawaii. The airplane was registered to, and being operated by the Honolulu Soaring Club, as a visual flight rules (VFR), glider tow flight, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The solo airline transport pilot received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed.
During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge on November 18, the pilot stated that during the landing roll, the airplane came to an abrupt stop, and nosed over. The airplane received substantial damage to the rudder, both wings, and lift struts.
On November 7, a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspector, who examined the airplane at the accident site, said that the right brake was locked up, and the tire would not rotate normally. The airplane was recovered to a hangar for further examination.
During a follow-up examination, the FAA inspector reported that he observed the disassembly of the right brake, and no anomalies were found. After re-assembly he said the brake operated normally.
NTSB Probable Cause
A landing gear brake malfunction during the landing for reasons that could not be determined because post-accident examination did not reveal any anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.
LINK: N65070 Aircraft Registration
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HNN: In light of another Dillingham Airfield tragedy, Sen. Schatz calls for its closure
Hours after a crash that killed 2 men Saturday, Sen. Schatz issued a statement saying:
"Our hearts are with those affected by today’s tragic accident. It has become clear that Dillingham Airfield cannot continue to operate safely. Our obligation is to keep people safe, and the only way to do that is to keep the airfield closed. I urge the FAA and HDOT to shut down the airfield until they can guarantee safety of operations at Dillingham.”
But the area’s state lawmaker disagrees.
“I take exactly the opposite position. This is the reason why the airfield needs to stay open," said state Sen. Gil Riviere.
“New pilots need airports like this to learn. They can’t fly and learn to fly at Honolulu International. We need this airport at all costs.”
NTSB records show that since 1987, a total of 14 people have died in plane crashes at Dillingham Airfield. That includes the skydiving plane accident eight months ago that claimed the lives of 11 people.
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News Release: Sen Gil Riviere rebuts statement by Sen Schatz
…"I am very disappointed with the statement made by Senator Brian Schatz calling for the closure of Dillingham Airfield. It is irresponsible to make such a definitive statement about the accident and the airfield before any facts of the matter have been established.
"The two pilots who lost their lives today were highly qualified aviators, devoted to the love of flight. They were very well liked and respected, trained countless new pilots, and eagerly shared their passion for aviation. These men absolutely loved to fly at Dillingham Airfield, so a call to shut down the airport within hours of their loss is truly insensitive and misinformed. God bless these good men, their loved ones and everyone who had the pleasure to know them."….
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Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) official statement on yesterday's Dillingham Airfield crash:
"The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) extends its deepest condolences to the families and those affected by yesterday's tragedy at Dillingham Airfield, located on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawai`i. Thank you to the first responders and emergency personnel who were first on the scene. AOPA will comment on the accident following a complete investigation by the NTSB, and will continue working alongside local pilots and aviation groups to support keeping the airfield open.”
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From Hawaiian Airlines, February 24, 2020 -- A Message from President & CEO Peter Ingram
It is with sadness that I send this note to our ‘ohana about the loss of a friend and colleague.
Rick Rogers, known to many of us as Captain Rick, was involved in the tragic crash at Dillingham Airfield on Saturday that claimed his life and that of fellow pilot, Bill Enoka.
Rick piloted our aircraft for more than 20 years and, upon retirement, became one of our very best storytellers. As our company Archivist, he meticulously catalogued our history through a collection of images, posters, correspondence, manuals, uniforms, models, trinkets and more. His Flyback Friday posts in our Mana’o blog and his From the Archives column in Hāna Hou! magazine captured the long history of the Islands’ rich flying culture. His research adorns the walls of our stations. His final piece will run in the March 2020 Ho’ike: an account of a Pilots’ Pa’ina celebrating the retirement of eight of our Captains.
Rick was a true aviation buff who loved and admired our industry. He will be deeply missed. Details about services to honor his life will be shared when finalized.
I send my aloha and heartfelt condolences to his wife, Lois, and his many friends here at Hawaiian Airlines.
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TGI: Kauai’s ‘Uncle Billy’ crash victim -- Enoka, from Kapa‘a, was a retired captain of the Kaua‘i Fire Department, a training pilot and aircraft maintenance officer with Civil Air Patrol, a father and a friend to many on the island....
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Dec 27, 2019: Will 2020 be the year of an Hawaii Airport Corporation?
Dec 29, 2019: Rep Case Calls on FAA to Tighten Regulations After Deadly Helicopter Crash
Feb 7, 2020: Caught in Lie, Airports Division Admits it is Trying to Dump Dillingham Airfield
Feb 11, 2020: HDoT Sends Eviction Notices to Dillingham Airfield Tenants