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New Pilot Crashes, 3 Die

A man who had had his pilot’s license for only 3 months died when his plane crashed into a mountain.  Andrey Pasechnikov, 38, was piloting a Cessna 182K when it crashed into the abruptly rising hills on the west side of the Snake River, 30 miles away from Nampa, Idaho. Also killed in the crash were his mother, Vera Pasechnikov, 69, and brother-in-law, Yuriy Ludan, 24. Bad weather conditions, including heavy fog were blamed for the accident.

The group had traveled from Nampa to Portland, Oregon on Jan. 28, 2011 in order to attend a funeral and memorial service. Along the way they stopped for refueling at the airport in Madras, Oregon. While in Madras, Andrey Pasechnikov informed the airport manager that he had already attempted to land in Portland and was unable to do so because of bad weather, but was going to try again.

The airport manager volunteered his car free of charge, so that the group wouldn’t have to risk flying in the weather. They accepted his offer and continued the trip in his car. They missed the memorial service, but were able to attend the funeral.

On Jan. 29, 2011 they returned to Madras to pick up the plane and head back home around 6 p.m. MST.  Pasechnikov fueled the plane and departed just as it was getting dark. Almost two hours later the plane landed to refuel again in Ontario, Oregon. Pasechnikov sent a text message to family members at home that they would be back in Nampa in about 20 minutes.

When the group did not arrive home, family members looked for and found his vehicle still parked at the airport, and reported the plane as missing. The crash site was eventually located by tracking the airplane’s emergency locator transmitter signal. A review of the FAA database revealed that Pasechnikov had earned his private pilot license a little less than three months before the crash.

(Source(s): Idaho Press-Tribune & NTSB)

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