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Pilot Identified in Deadly Colorado Plane Crash

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Tina Robinson4 years ago

Frontier airlines have said that the pilot killed on Wednesday in a single-plane crash in Aurora, CO was Gregory Dirk Pelley, 53 of Englewood, CO.

About the Plane Crash

According to NBC 9 News, the pilot was a 17-year-veteran with Frontier Airlines. An employee of Frontier told 9 News that Pelley had purchased the twin-engine Piper that crashed just two weeks prior to the accident.

Witnesses reported the plane flying dangerously low to homes just before the crash occurred. One video taken by witnesses shows Pelley’s plane flying up before stalling and diving toward the ground. The Douglas County Coroner said Pelley died from multiple blunt force injuries.

An investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has said that Pelley’s maneuvers were in violation of FAA regulations. One of the things that the NTSB will examine is whether or not Pelley “over-stressed” a critical part of the air frame or flying controls while executing the dangerous maneuvers.

Aviation Accident Statistics

A 2011 report on aviation accidents by the NTSB shows that:

  • In 2010, there were 1,520 total aviation accidents involving 1,520 registered U.S. aircraft.
  • 18% of all aviation accidents in 2010 were fatal, resulting in 470 deaths.
  • Loss of control accounted for the largest portion of personal flying accident fatalities in 2010 at 38%.
  • The majority of fatal personal flying accidents occurred while the pilot was maneuvering the aircraft.
  • The average experience of a pilot involved in personal flying accidents was 2,863 total hours of flight time. 


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