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September 24, 2011
Early investigation: Mechanical failure may have caused Reno crash
A tiny part of the plane might have gone missing. Competitive planes such as Jimmy Leeward’s Galloping Ghost are often highly-customized to help them move quicker and more efficiently. One of those part is the “elevator trim tab,” a piece of the plane that helps neutralize controls during a flight — something which comes in handy more than usual if, say, you regularly fly more than 500 miles per hour, like you might in a racing plane. In planes like Leeward’s, not having that piece would have made maneuvering the plane very difficult, and may have forced the plane to pitch severely upward. It might have even caused him to black out just before the crash itself. While the NTSB’s own report was vague, those in the aviation community suggest this combination of things caused Leeward to black out, leading to the crash. In the photo above, the part appears to be missing from the plane, so it’s entirely feasible. source
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A tiny part of the plane might have gone missing. Competitive planes such as Jimmy Leeward’s Galloping Ghost are often highly-customized to help them move quicker and more efficiently. One of those part is the “elevator trim tab,” a piece of the plane that helps neutralize controls during a flight — something which comes in handy more than usual if, say, you regularly fly more than 500 miles per hour, like you might in a racing plane. In planes like Leeward’s, not having that piece would have made maneuvering the plane very difficult, and may have forced the plane to pitch severely upward. It might have even caused him to black out just before the crash itself. While the NTSB’s own report was vague, those in the aviation community suggest this combination of things caused Leeward to black out, leading to the crash. In the photo above, the part appears to be missing from the plane, so it’s entirely feasible. source

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18:31 // 3 years ago
September 18, 2011
I’m not aware of a lot of aircraft having it, this is the first one I came across.
NTSB lead investigator Howard Plagens • Discussing the “significant” finding of recording devices (commonly called a “black box”) on the vintage WWII fighter plane involved in Friday’s Reno Air Races crash. Due to the nature of the aircraft, it was a bit of a surprise to find it. On top of the data-recording device, there was a camera that pointed outside of the plane. This will be significant as the regulatory agency puts together the pieces of the deadly crash, which killed nine — seven on impact (including the pilot) and two at local hospitals. source (viafollow)
20:30 // 3 years ago
September 17, 2011

Reno Air Races press conference: Here’s the latest on the deadly crash

  • nine number of people killed during yesterday’s crash; it’s unknown if this total will rise
  • 69 number of people treated for injuries at local hospitals; 54 were brought there by medics
  • 31 number of people admitted for their injuries; eight patients in critical condition source

» Crater left by plane crash: A three-foot deep, eight-foot wide crater was left by the plane crash, according to Chief investigator Howard Plagens. Meanwhile, NTSB member Mark Rosekind says that the focus right now is gathering factual information, not analyzing it. He says that although the crash took seconds to happen, retracing its steps will take months. (information gathered via live press conference)

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21:43 // 3 years ago

Reno Air Races update: Death toll rises, NTSB press conference soon

  • reno The latest report is that nine people died in the accident yesterday, including the pilot, Jimmy Leeward. Many of those in the hospital — roughly three dozen — suffered head injuries. NTSB officials will have a press conference at 9:15 EDT to relay the latest updates.
  • martinsburg Another crash — a day after that at the Reno Air Races — spooked people at a race in Martinsburg, West Virginia today. The crash killed the pilot but did not affect anyone in the crowds. The pilot, much like Leeward, was flying a vintage World War plane. source

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20:44 // 3 years ago

What we know about last night’s Reno Air Races crash

  • one At least three people have died and more than 50 were injured after a plane crashed into the stands. Many of the injured — some critically — have lost limbs. There was no explosion.
  • two The air races have been cancelled for only the second time in their history — the first being in the wake of September 11, 2001. A memorial will be held today for pilot Jimmy Leeward.
  • three Leeward himself was a qualified pilot, and witnesses say it looked like he tried to salvage the landing. But officials have avoided offering a definitive description of events. source

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10:06 // 3 years ago
September 16, 2011
craignewman:

The Galloping Ghost - P-51D-15NA: A brief history of the plane that crashed in Reno.

A plane with a long history and a tragic end.

craignewman:

The Galloping Ghost - P-51D-15NA: A brief history of the plane that crashed in Reno.

A plane with a long history and a tragic end.

22:21 // 3 years ago