NTSB releases report on fatal 2018 plane accident

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FANCY GAP, Va. (AP/WVNS) – 4 p.m. May 13, 2020: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released the results of an investigation into a fatal crash in October 2018. Ralph Young, 65, of Fayetteville, WV was killed when the plane he was flying crashed near Fancy Gap, VA.

According to a report filed by the NTSB, on April 20, 2020 Mr. Young was flying a plane which was not equipped to fly on instruments only, and Mr. Young was not certified to fly in those conditions. The weather forecast along the flight plan would have required Mr. Young to use instruments.

Additionally, the flight plan filed showed a cruise altitude of 2,100 ft, but the highest point of terrain along the path was 3,800 ft. The airplane hit a mountain at 2,766 ft, which was about 150 ft below the summit. An analysis of the wreckage did indicate Mr. Young was attempting to return to an area where he could fly visually when he hit the mountain.

Toxicology tests showed Mr. Young was taking two antidepressants and had significant depression. There were also four impairing or sedating medications in his system. The NTSB concluded the depression and the medications contributed to poor-decision making by Mr. Young and contributed to the accident.

The complete report can be viewed here: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20181007X50731&AKey=1&RType=HTML&IType=FA

ORIGINAL STORY 7:30 p.m. Oct. 7, 2018: Police in Virginia say a 65-year-old man has died after his single-engine plane crashed in the far western part of the state.
Virginia State Police said in a statement that the plane was reported missing shortly after 2 a.m. on Sunday. The plane crashed near the town of Fancy Gap, which is in Carroll County and about four hours west of Richmond.
State police identified the deceased pilot as Ralph C. Young of Fayetteville, West Virginia. Young had been flying between Fayetteville and Elkin, North Carolina.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation. The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are assisting with the investigation.

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