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NTSB rules that pilot did not have flight plan in fatal crash

Posted on Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 11:09 am

Debris from the plane is visible in the soybean field as investigators are on the scene.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has reported a pilot, who died in a fatal plane crash last week, had no record that he obtained a weather briefing or filed a flight plan.
According to the NTSB’s Aviation Accident Preliminary Report, reported instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the 4:15 a.m. accident on July 27.
The flight did originate from Mexico Municipal Airport leaving around 4 a.m. and was en route to Oshkosh, Wisc.
NTSB’s report includes mention of the airport manager arriving late on July 26.
Bobby Faulkner, the 41-year-old pilot, reportedly told the manager that he wanted to get an early start the next morning with the goal of arriving in Oshkosh, Wisc. when its control tower opened at 7 a.m.
The airport manager said he believed the pilot and his wife Shannon Faulkner, also age 41 and also from Greenwood, Ark., camped that evening next to the airplane.
When the manager arrived to the airport the next morning, the airplane was gone.
An alert notice was issued later for the missing plane before wreckage was located 6.5 miles northwest of Laddonia in Ralls County.
An on-scene investigation revealed the airplane struck the ground in a right wing low, nose down attitude as evidenced by green position light fragments at the beginning of the ground scar followed by the impact crater. The NTSB report also notes a crushed right wing and relatively intact left wing were located further down the debris path, followed by the fuselage and engine.
The debris path was aligned on a projectory back towards Mexico, Mo. Faulkner’s 2003 Zenith 701 single-engine airplane was discovered in a soybean field just off Kentucky Lane, not too far from the intersection with Prairie View Road.
Those looking for the aircraft included members of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Ralls County Sheriff’s Office, Ralls County Ambulance District, Perry Fire Department, and Ralls County first responders.
Both occupants were pronounced dead at the scene by Ralls County Coroner Robert Van Winkle.
Plane crash investigators were at the scene of the crash for a couple of days.