Investigation of plane crash at Briarcliffe RV Resort continues

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, Sc. — Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board, with assistance from Federal Aviation Administration officials and local authorities, spent Wednesday inspecting the structure and engine of the Cessna plane that crashed into a trailer at Briarcliffe RV Resort on Tuesday, killing the pilot and a woman inside the trailer.

NTSB officials said it would take seven to 10 days before the agency issues a preliminary report, but so far the field investigation shows no evidence of any in-flight structural failure or fire, according to The Sun News. The investigation will also include looking at weather conditions during the time of the crash, the physiology of the pilot, the structural integrity of the plane, air traffic control radar and witness statements.

In addition, NTSB officials have records from the FAA that detail the pilot’s history.

NTSB representatives plan to be at the crash site for about three days.

Parts from the plane remained at the crash site on Wednesday, including some that needed to be removed from a tree at the RV Resort. The wreckage will be stored in a secured facility for further examination, NTSB investigator,Todd Gunther said.

Pilot Kenneth Charles Thode was practicing take-offs and landings Tuesday when the plane crashed after one of the take-off maneuvers. It was unclear whether Thode’s log book, which records all flights, the number of hours, and what the pilots do, had been recovered as part of the investigation.

The woman killed in the crash was Eva Sullivan, 70, from Sunapee, N.H. Sullivan and her husband, Thomas, were inside the RV when the plane crashed, stated The Sun News. Thomas Sullivan was able to make it out of the trailer after the impact. He suffered first-degree burns and was taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center. He has since been released.

Another person who was in the vicinity at the time of the plane crash suffered minor injuries and refused treatment.

NTSB officials said it could take up to a year before a final report is released on a probable cause of the crash.

To read the complete story from The Sun News, click here.

Kelly Cauthorn

Kelly Cauthorn

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