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Use of jet fuel contributed to deadly Kokomo plane crash, NTSB reports

Photo near the scene of the crash

KOKOMO, Ind.– A preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) says the usage of an incorrect fuel type contributed to a deadly plane crash in Howard County.

The crash occurred around 5 p.m. on Oct. 5 between 300 East and 500 East. The twin-engine plane crashed a few hundred yards from the roadway in a soybean field. The sole occupant of the plane, 59-year-old Dr. Daniel P. Greenwald, M.D. of Tampa, died from blunt force trauma.

The NTSB’s report released on Thursday reveals the pilot asked for jet fuel, which the plane didn’t need. The employee confirmed again with the pilot before fueling the plane.

The report says the plane was filled with about 163 gallons of the fuel. The employee reported the plane’s engines sounded “typical” when started, and did not hear any radio transmissions from the pilot during his departure.

The pilot visually checked the fuel tanks of the airplane before taking off. The winds favored the runway he used, according to the report.

A witness told authorities she saw an airplane flying low from north to south before it made a sharp left turn to the east. The left wing reportedly dipped low and then she lost sight of the plane. When she approached the accident site, she saw the plane on the ground.

Officials say the wreckage displayed features consistent with an accelerated stall. Several of the engine spark plugs exhibited damage consistent with detonation.

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