Plane Was Not At Fault

October 24, 1990

The airplane that took the life of pilot Jack B. Poage in September was not at fault, says a preliminary report by the National Transportation Safety Board.

Poage died Sept. 23 while performing a stunt in his Pitts S-2B at the Upper Chesapeake Airshow and Seafood Festival at Martin State Airport in Middle River, Baltimore County.

The accident was witnessed by thousands of spectators.

"Examination of the aircraft revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunction," said the report by Dennis L. Jones, NTSB investigator.

"Review of the video recording of the accident indicates the aircraft was in a descent and the pilot was doing spins, having completed the fourth spin, when the aircraft struck the ground," the report said.

"The review of the recording indicates the aircraft was leveling from the descent with engine power applied simultaneously," the report concluded.

Jones said the NTSB would not have a final report for another six months to a year. On-site investigations were done and witnesses interviewed for the report.

Jones also said he was not aware of any concerns from the pilots about wind conditions that day. Wind speeds varied from 12 to 22 knots, with no precipitation during the show. The temperature was 65 degrees with scattered clouds.

Poage, 62, and his wife, June, owned Westair Inc. and managed the Carroll County Airport for the past 11 years. He had been an aviator for most of his life.

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