NTSB, FAA Ask Canada TSB To Investigate Virginia Midair

 - May 31, 2012, 3:48 PM

An investigation continues into Monday’s midair between a Beechcraft Bonanza and a Piper PA-28 over Summerduck, Va., southwest of Washington, D.C. The Bonanza was owned by an NTSB employee and the PA-28 by an FAA employee, prompting NTSB chairman Deborah Hersman to ask the Transportation Safety Board of Canada to assist in the investigation to avoid any conflict of interest.

Both the Bonanza pilot, Dr. James W. Duncan, and his passenger, Paul Gardella, were killed in the crash. The pilot and only occupant of the Piper, Thomas Proven, was injured but he managed to get the damaged airplane back on the ground and survived. The Bonanza broke into at least two pieces and caught fire before impact.

Duncan was employed by the NTSB as a medical advisor, while Proven was employed as an inspector with the FAA. Key to the investigation will be testimony from Proven. A witness on the ground also saw the PA-28 hit the ground.