Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Columbia LC41-550FG, N1058S: Fatal accident occurred October 09, 2015 on Buffalo Mountain, Johnson City, Washington County, Tennessee

Washington County, Tennessee, lieutenant builds memorial at site of Buffalo Mountain plane crash

WASHINGTON COUNTY, TN (WJHL) – A deadly plane crash on Buffalo Mountain inspired one first responder to build a memorial to honor the victims. 

On October 9th, 2015 William “Bill” Gibbons and his daughter Abbey died in a plane crash in Washington County, TN on Buffalo Mountain.

“The storm had hit, when we got here there was still a fire going smoke was pouring out everywhere, it’s usually rescue mode but in this situation there was nothing to rescue,” said Lt. Doug Gregg with the Washington County, TN Sheriff’s Office, one many emergency workers who responded to the crash.

“We did everything we could for 3 days to try to get everything that we could out of here and send it back home but there are still things here that need to be remembered,” said Gregg.

For two weeks, Lt. Gregg, hiked a mile and a half to the secluded area where the crash happened and built a memorial.

“I worked off and on my off time for probably two weeks then I had about two weeks to sit and think about it,” said Gregg.

Gregg told News Channel 11’s Micah Smith, building the memorial helped him process the incident.

“When officers work scenes like this there’s always a piece of you that stays at the scene. I feel more at peace and it’s not just a memorial for them, it’s for the officers [who] worked this — the EMS guys and the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Office — everybody who had a part in this,” said Gregg.

Although the memorial was a part of Gregg’s healing process, he told News Channel 11, he will be happy if it also brings peace to others.

Gregg said he hasn’t told many people about the memorial, including the family of the victims, but he does keep in contact with friends of the family.

Original article can be found here: http://wdtn.com

William "Bill" Gibbons with his daughter Abbey

William S. Gibbons, Jr: http://registry.faa.gov/N1058S  

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA006
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, October 09, 2015 in Erwin, TN
Aircraft: COLUMBIA AIRCRAFT MFG LC41 550FG, registration: N1058S
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On October 9, 2015, about 1919 eastern daylight time, a Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing LC41-550FG, N1058S, was destroyed following a collision with terrain near Erwin, Tennessee. The private pilot and one passenger were fatally injured. The flight originated from the McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), Knoxville, Tennessee, about 1832, and was destined for Monroe County Airport (BMG), Bloomington, Indiana. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan had been filed. The airplane was owned and operated by a private individual. The personal flight was conducted under the provision of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The flight initially departed earlier in the day from the Kissimmee Gateway Airport (ISM), Orlando, Florida, at 1306, with an intended destination of BMG. While enroute, the pilot requested to divert to TYS due to a "significant amount of thunderstorms." That flight landed at 1558.

Preliminary radar data provided by the Federal Aviation Administration, indicated that the accident flight departed TYS about 1832, on a ground track of about 080 degrees. About 18 minutes later, the flight leveled off about 15,000 feet above mean sea level (msl). Then, about 16 minutes later, the airplane turned left to a ground track of about 330 degrees, and began a climb to about 17,000 feet. About 3 minutes after leveling off at 17,000 feet, the flight began descending. The last radar return, recorded at 1919, was in the vicinity of the accident location, at an altitude of 3,400 feet msl.

Several eyewitnesses reported seeing the lights of the airplane as it descended downward. Some of the witnesses also reported seeing lightning and heavy rain in the vicinity about the time of the accident.

The airplane impacted trees and terrain located within the Cherokee National Forest, at an approximate elevation of 2,880 feet. The debris path was compact and the ground and tree scars were consistent with a near vertical descent, and a nose down impact angle. The wreckage was fragmented and thermally destroyed.

The 1853 recorded weather at the Tri-Cities Regional Airport (TRI), Blountville, Tennessee, located 16 miles to the north of the accident location, included light rain and wind from 250 degrees at 6 knots. A special recorded weather observation, at 1937, included thunderstorms with occasional lighting in the cloud as well as cloud to ground lighting. The observation further indicated that thunderstorms were in the vicinity of the airport and moving to the east.

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Nashville FSDO-19

Bill Gibbons, vice president of engineering at Cook Medical.

Abbey Hardison Gibbons

William S. "Bill" Gibbons Jr. 

William S. "Bill" Gibbons Jr. 

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