Airport Crash Report Released

WEST OCEAN CITY – The small plane that skidded off the runway and overturned at the Ocean City Airport in July experienced engine trouble just after takeoff, according to a report released this week.

The National Safety Transportation Board (NTSB) on Wednesday released the report for the small plane crash at the Ocean City Airport in July. Shortly after noon on July 19, an experimental, amateur-built Vans RV-7A took off from the Ocean City Airport bound for Manassas, Va., according to the flight plan filed for the aircraft.

According to the NTSB report, the unidentified pilot performed a pre-flight inspection of the aircraft and an engine run-up with no anomalies reported. The pilot then taxied the aircraft onto runway 20 and applied full power as he took off. However, with the plane about 500 feet off the ground, the engine experienced a partial loss of power.

The pilot verified the throttle, mixture and propeller were in the full forward position and elected to stay in the airport traffic pattern and attempt a landing on runway 14. According to the NTSB report, the pilot radioed the tower that he was landing on runway 14. However, on approach he noticed another airplane was already on the runway preparing for a departure, according to the report.

The pilot then radioed the pilot of the other aircraft and asked him to abort the takeoff. As that airplane exited the runway, the pilot of the distressed aircraft continued to approach runway 14. The pilot reported his aircraft was “high and fast,” but he still wanted to land on the runway in order to avoid landing in the water, according to the report.

The pilot landed the plane “hard” about 1,000 feet from the end of the runway and continued for about another 150 feet into the grass where it “nosed over” and came to rest inverted, which resulted in substantial damage to the rudder. The pilot sustained minor injuries and was transported to the hospital. A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspection revealed compression was confirmed on all cylinders, fuel was noted in the fuel lines and there were no holes in the crankcase. The engine has been retained for further inspection.

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.