Pilots say rules for uncontrolled airspace work
March 7, 2010
LONGMONT, Colo. (AP) – Federal investigators are examining the communications between the pilots of two small planes just before a fatal crash above Boulder last month, but other general-aviation pilots say it’s not unusual for them to fly in uncontrolled airspace on a clear day without talking to anybody.
A Cirrus SR20 that left Erie Municipal Airport on Feb. 6 collided with a Piper Pawnee that took off from Boulder Municipal Airport towing a glider, killing three people on the planes. The glider disconnected from the Piper Pawnee just before the crash and flew to safety.
Pilots who also flew that day say it was a little hazier than usual and there was sun.
Vector Air owner and pilot Jason Hurd said he’s not sure more regulation would have helped the pilots.
“It was a freak accident,” said Tim Barth, manager of Longmont Municipal Airport.
The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.
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There have been four midair collisions in Colorado since 2000, according to the NTSB, in Denver and in Snowmass Village in 2003, in Whitewater in 2008 and in Boulder last month.
Information from: Daily Times-Call, http://timescall.com/