Plane disappears off radar contact off Yarmouth

15 Jan

US Coast Guard planes and boats are assisting Yarmouth area fire departments in a search for a plane that went missing from air traffic control radar screens. The plane missing is a single-engined 4 seat Piper Comanche, believed to have two persons on board. Initial reports stated that the people on board were a flight instructor and student. The plane took off from Marthas Vineyard airport (KMVY) at 9:20 this morning.

Tail #N7648P had altitude discrepancies and when queried by air traffic control, reported smoke in the cabin. They then reported that the smoke has cleared. Shortly afterwards, they dropped off air traffic control radar, and ATC was unable to raise them on the radio. ATC audio is below. A wide scale search is underway for the plane and it’s occupants.

UPDATE: The plane has reportedly been located at the Captain’s Golf Course off Freeman’s Way in Brewster. Multiple units are en route.

UPDATE: Some wreckage of the plane and one body have been located in the area of 160 Robbins Hill Rd in Brewster. A second body has been reported to be found on the beach near 183 Cemetery Rd, also in Brewster.

UPDATE: A Massachusetts State Police helicopter, working with crews searching on the ground, located the wreckage of the plane Monday morning approximately one mile off the coast of Brewster, in 30 feet of water.

UPDATE: Synopsis from the National Transportation Safety Board’s preliminary report:

On  January 15, 2012, about 1010 eastern standard time, a Piper PA-24-180, N7648P, crashed into Cape Cod  Bay  near  Brewster, Massachusetts. The airplane was registered to a private individual and was operated  by the private pilot. Instrument meteorological conditions were present in the area and an
instrument  flight  rules  flight  plan  was  filed  for  the  instructional  flight  from  Hyannis,
Massachusetts  (HYA)  to  Vineyard  Haven,  Massachusetts  (MVY). The flight was conducted under the provisions  of  14  Code  of Federal Regulations Part 91. The airplane sustained substantial damage.
The certified flight instructor and private pilot were fatally injured. According  to  the  Federal  Aviation  Administration,  the  crew  was practicing instrument holding patterns  as  part  of  an  instrument proficiency check. Air traffic control (ATC) queried the crew about  altitude  fluctuations, and the crew responded that there was smoke in the cabin. ATC cleared the  flight  direct  to  HYA,  and  the crew responded that the smoke had cleared and they wanted to continue  the  flight.  Radar  and  radio  contact  was  subsequently  lost. The wreckage was found, submerged, in the bay near Brewster.
Weather,  recorded  at HYA at 0956, included the winds from 310 degrees at 14 knots with gusts to 20
knots, visibility 1 and ½ miles in light snow, and an overcast ceiling at 1,900 feet.
The wreckage was recovered to a storage facility where a detailed examination will be performed.

N7648P by AlertNewEngland


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One Response to “Plane disappears off radar contact off Yarmouth”

  1. Anonymous January 15, 2012 at 7:37 pm #

    They found a body and parts of the air craft

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