December 21st, 2012|
December 21, 201
Considered to be one of the safest airplane to fly, a Diamond Aircraft DA40 airplane crashed shortly after takeoff from Valdosta (Georgia) Regional Airport earlier this month, reports The Press Sentinel.
A prominent 52-year-old Valdosta business man, who was the pilot and sole occupant of the four-seat, Austrian-made aircraft, died in the crash.
The single engine plane had taken off at night, and soon after takeoff the pilot telephoned about 8:30 p.m. to report trouble. Shortly after that call, the airplane disappeared from the radar, and a search was immediately initiated.
By the next morning, as many as 50 rescue personnel were involved in the search. The plane was spotted from the air at around 11:15 a.m. Data from the man’s cell phone helped authorities locate the wreckage.
The plane was in “rugged terrain” off Georgia Highway 41 between Dasher and Lake Park in Lowndes County, some 20 miles south of Valdosta. Rescue crews had difficulty reaching the crash site.
The man had four children and was owner and operator of a wholesale produce company.
The Diamond DA40 airplane has accumulated a very low accident record, particularly with regard to stall and spin accidents. In a 2011 analysis, the DA40 was shown to have the lowest fatal accident rate in U.S. aviation history.