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James T. Crouse
James T. Crouse
Attorney • (919) 861-0500

Follow-Up On Deadly Piedmont Triad International Airport Crash

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It has now been confirmed that Marcia Salmons-Keaton, 50, was flying the Beechcraft Baron 58 when the aircraft crashed into a house in High Point, North Carolina, roughly 3 miles from touchdown at Piedmont Triad International Airport.

It has now also been confirmed that the National Weather Service reported heavy fog in the area at the time, with visibility as low as a quarter-mile. The pilot spoke with air traffic controllers (ATC) and was routed to PTI via “radar vectors,” which means she was directed to the bigger airport every step of the way by air traffic controllers.

In the air traffic control recording the pilot of Air Logistics 569 (AirLog 569), after receiving the 100-foot ceiling weather, is heard that it (the weather) wouldn’t help much. After that, the pilot discussed holding—which means waiting for the weather to clear—with the air traffic controller. The air traffic controller told her that everyone was getting into Greensboro—no “go-arounds”—then the pilot of Air Log 569 agreed try an approach. The controller then guided the aircraft to an instrument approach to runway 5 left. AirLog 569 was cleared to 3000 feet, and then was cleared for the ILS Rwy 5L approach 9 miles from Cives, which is 4.7 nm miles from touchdown. AirLog 569 was instructed to maintain 3000 feet until established on the approach.

Fifty seconds after this, the controller contacted the Air Logistics aircraft saying that it had flown through the localizer course, and the pilot responded that the aircraft was coming back to the course. Approximately two minutes later, ATC cleared AirLog 569 to land on Rwy 5L. Just over a minute later, called AirLog 569 to advise it of a low altitude alert and the pilot responded that they were going around. The controller issued go-around instructions.

ATC tried several times after this to contact AirLog 569 but there were no responses.