Inadequate Oxygen, Pilot Error Blamed in Plane Crash

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

WINFIELD, W.Va. (AP) - Investigators say inadequate oxygen supplies and a pilot's failure to check his oxygen levels resulted in last year's fatal crash in Putnam County.

St. Paul, Minnesota, resident William Cammack Junior's twin-engine plane crashed in March 2006 in the backyard of a Winfield home.

The plane was hundreds of miles off course and was escorted for several hours by National Guard jets before it fell into the yard.

The National Transportation Safety Board attributes the crash to the 56-year-old pilot's inadequate pre-flight planning and inadequate in-flight planning and decision making.

On the day of the crash, Cammack had taken off from Glendive, Montana, for a 600-mile flight to St. Paul. His flight plan had him flying at altitudes that required him to use oxygen.

Air traffic controllers lost contact with Cammack and the plane flew over St. Paul. It was intercepted by Air National Guard jets in Wisconsin but the pilots couldn't make contact with Cammack.

Cammack was the only person on board. The N-T-S-B says he was wearing an oxygen mask at the time of the crash but the two oxygen bottles on the plane were empty.

No one on the ground was injured.

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