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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 30064
Last updated: 18 October 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic PA44 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-44-180 Seminole
Owner/operator:Hortman Aviation Services
Registration: N2225G
C/n / msn: 44-799517
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:9
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Burlington, NJ -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Philadelphia, PA (PNE)
Destination airport:
A Piper PA-31-350 Navajo Chieftain, N27944, operated by Patuxent Airways, Inc., Hollywood, Maryland, and a Piper PA-44-180 Seminole, N2225G, operated by Hortman Aviation Services, Inc., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, were destroyed when they collided in flight over Burlington Township, New Jersey. The airline transport pilot, commercial pilot, and seven passengers aboard the Navajo Chieftain were killed, as were the flight instructor and the private pilot aboard the Seminole. Day visual meteorological conditions existed at the time of the accident, and both airplanes were operating under visual flight rules when the collision occurred. The flight crews of both airplanes were properly certificated and qualified in accordance with applicable Federal regulations. None of these individuals was experiencing any personal problems or rest anomalies that would have affected their performance. The airplanes had undergone the required inspections. Examination of their maintenance documents revealed that both airplanes complied with all appropriate airworthiness directives. Evidence gathered from the wreckage indicated that neither airplane had experienced an in-flight fire, bird strike, or structural or mechanical failure. Tissue samples revealed that the pilot of the Seminole had taken doxylamine sometime before the accident. (Doxylamine is a sedating antihistamine that has substantial adverse effects on performance.) However, the amount of blood available for analysis was insufficient for determining exactly when the pilot may have ingested the medication or whether his performance was impaired by the effects of doxylamine. A partial cockpit visibility study revealed that the Seminole would have been visible to the pilots in the Chieftain for at least the 60 seconds before the collision. No stereo photographs from a Seminole cockpit were available to determine precise obstruction angles. However, because of the relative viewing angle, the Chieftain would have been visible to the pilots in the Seminole for most of the last 60 seconds. The study further revealed that about 4 seconds before impact, or about .11 nm separation, the angular width of each airplane in each pilot's field of vision would have been approximately 0.5 to 0.6 degrees or about 1/4 inch apparent size at the windscreen.

Probable Cause: the failure of the pilots of the two airplanes to see and avoid each other and maintain proper airspace separation during visual flight rules flight.



Revision history:

27-Sep-2008 01:00 ASN archive Added
21-Dec-2016 19:16 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
21-Dec-2016 19:20 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
12-Dec-2017 19:01 ASN Update Bot Updated [Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
11-Nov-2018 13:03 TB Updated [Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Source]
11-Nov-2018 13:03 TB Updated [Source]

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