Author Topic: WWII fighter plane damaged in Deer Park crash on Friday  (Read 7664 times)

Offline KB4TEZ

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WWII fighter plane damaged in Deer Park crash on Friday
« on: July 11, 2023, 05:42:04 AM »
https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2023/jul/07/wwii-fighter-plane-damaged-in-deer-park-crash/

and no injuries.  nice bird.

A plane flown in World War II and exhibited in a Spokane museum crashed Friday morning at the Deer Park Airport.

The pilot, John Sessions, was uninjured in the crash and the only person aboard, according to Sessions and the Historic Flight Foundation.

“When you do what I do with the old warbirds, you have a certain amount of risk every time you fly,” said Sessions, who is founder, CEO and chairman of the foundation.

Sessions, wearing a light brown flight suit, said he landed on the runway and then the 1944 single-seat Supermarine Spitfire started pulling to the left. He said he did all the necessary actions to compensate, but it continued to veer left.

The warbird, which was decelerating, left the runway onto the dirt and eventually went nose-first into the ground, destroying the wooden propeller.

“There are a number of factors that could contribute to that,” Sessions said of the plane veering off the paved runway. “We’ll let that run its course.”

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the incident.

Jared Harms, fire marshal at Spokane County Fire District 4, said firefighters were sent to the incident at 8:34 a.m.

Sessions said he was test-flying the plane after its annual inspection. He departed Felts Field in Spokane, orbited over the airport so officials below could check whether the landing gear retracted, and then landed in Deer Park to check the landing and other systems.

“It didn’t work out as well as I hoped,” Sessions said.

He said he believes the plane will need a new propeller, sheet metal work and landing gear repairs because the gear collapsed when the plane hit the dirt.

Sessions said he restored the plane in England and will likely have English mechanics repair it. He said he is unsure how much the repairs will cost.

Investigators were at the scene Friday, and the plane was towed into an airport building early Friday afternoon. Sessions credited the Deer Park aviation community for its assistance.

The plane often is on display at the Historic Flight Foundation’s museum at Felts Field. Sessions has owned the plane for 13 years and has flown it in airshows, the foundation said.