February 28, 2018
Abram I. Bohrer

The airplane accident lawyers at Bohrer & Lukeman are monitoring three separate airplane crashes in each of which, the pilot of the general aviation aircraft fortunately survived. Between Saturday, February 4th, and Monday, February 6th, private airplanes crashed in Warren County, Mississippi, Fort Washington, Maryland, and Burke County, North Carolina. In each case, the pilot suffered non-permanent injuries. The aviation accident attorneys at Bohrer & Lukeman are following the events surrounding these incidents.

On Saturday, February 4th, a small airplane crashed near the Mississippi River in Warren County, Mississippi. Pilot Howard Jennings, 59, of Utica, flew alone from a private landing strip to the river early Saturday afternoon. His family lost contact with him around 1 p.m., later notifying the Hinds County Sheriff’s Department around 7 p.m.

A search party dispatched Sunday morning found Jennings near his plane, a single-engine Piper Sandcub, which was upside-down in the Mississippi River. Accorded to the Federal Aviation Administration, Jennings was suffering from dehydration and hypothermia. He was flown to River Region Hospital in Vicksburg, MS. The FAA is investigating the details of the crash.

In an unrelated incident on Monday, February 6th, a single-engine Piper PA-32R-301 suffered a “hard landing” near Potomac Air Field in Fort Washington, Maryland.

After receiving a 911 call from pilot Gerald Kempen, 64, the Prince George Fire Department dispatched a crew of emergency responders to the crash site. Mark Brady, spokesman for the department, tweeted at 11:52 a.m. that they had discovered the “walking wounded pilot” in the vicinity.

Kempen was disoriented and suffering short-term memory loss. He was taken to the local trauma center to recover.

State and federal authorities are investigating the crash. There were no signs of fire or hazardous materials related to the event.

In another incident Monday, a super-modified Beechcraft T-6 airplane crashed in Burke County, North Carolina. John Shell Sr., 84, was piloting the single-engine turboprop aircraft when it encountered mechanical issues around 5 p.m. leading to its crash. The plane burst into flames along Jamestown Road in Morganton, near Silver Creek Airport.

Bystanders who witnessed the crash dragged Shell from the wreckage.

“I heard it sputtering out of control,” said Tyler Woodard, one of the bystanders. “I immediately took off running and I didn’t think nothing else about it, and me and another gentleman dragged him out.”

Shell was found walking around the crash site, but does not have memory of the incident, according to his son. He was taken to the Morganton hospital for examination.

As of Tuesday morning, FAA investigators are on location investigating the cause of the crash.

The plane crash attorneys at Bohrer & Lukeman will continue to monitor these three non-fatal general aviation crashes and report any new information on its website as it is released. Abe Bohrer, lawfirm founder, weighed in on the incredible good fortune of these three pilots. “These are three lucky guys,” Said aviation attorney Bohrer. “It is very unusual to have three such serious crashes and three pilots survive, which is most important. However, their survival tremendously helps investigators in their job of determining the causes of each airplane crash. These pilots can identify the location of important records such as logs and maintenance records, give first hand accounts of the events leading up to the crash, and ultimately help the NTSB and FAA make aviation safer.”

Bohrer & Lukeman is an aviation accident law firm based in New York with years of experience focusing on general aviation aircraft accidents. The law firm’s founder, Abe Bohrer, has successfully represented clients both domestically and internationally that were injured in aviation accidents. The aircraft crash law firm is knowledgeable in general and commercial aviation accidents.