NTSB Finds Cause of Fatal Reno Air Race Crash

by | September 7th, 2012

September 7, 2012

In a report issued last week, officials with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) announced their findings on the cause of the fatal aviation accident that killed 11 people and injured more than 70 others at the Reno Air Races that took place in Reno, Nevada, last year. According to an article from The Washington Post, officials claim that loose screws on the P-51 Mustang aircraft’s trim tabs were responsible for causing the plane to crash.

The report indicated the pilot of the aircraft failed to inform race officials of the modifications he had made to the aircraft in an effort to make it fly faster. It also was discovered that there was no documentation that the modifications were ever tested.

“If you want to go out and fly fast and try to win, that’s one thing,” a spokesman for the NTSB. “If you’re modifying an aircraft without fully understanding how the modifications can affect the aerodynamics, you’re playing Russian roulette.”

In response to the findings, the organizations that put on the air races have made changes to improve the safety of the event for both pilots and spectators. Along with a modified race course that allows more distance between planes and crowds, pilots are also required to wear special flight suits to help their bodies cope with the high gravitational forces.

The Ohio personal injury lawyers with Nurenberg, Paris, Heller & McCarthy hope that the changes will better protect innocent bystanders from injury.