Renter Speculates Medical Issue To Blame
A resident of New Lenox, IL died Monday afternoon in the crash
of his six-week-old light-sport aircraft just south of Cushing
Field in Newark Township. The Morris Daily Herald reports Joseph E.
Johnson was 77 years old.
Airport owner Charles Cushing retired after 30 years with TWA.
He told the paper early speculation is that Johnson may have been
incapacitated by a medical problem. "The plane was in the airport
traffic pattern. If it had experienced engine failure, he should
have been able to glide it into the airport."
An autopsy was scheduled for yesterday, and results may
certainly lead to a debate within the aviation community. Johnson
was a Sport Pilot who learned to fly over last winter in Florida,
and was using a drivers license in lieu of an FAA medical
Cushing rented Johnson the plane involved in the accident, a
Czech Aircraft Works Sportcruiser LSA. The aircraft had only logged
about 100 flight hours since new.
Asked if he's nervous about entrusting his rental fleet to
pilots who haven't passed the FAA medical, Cushing remarked, "The
same person can travel on Illinois 71 at 80 miles an hour, and have
a medical problem. I worry more about people like that. This fellow
was a very cautious pilot."
The initial FAA report listed weather at the time of the
accident as simply, "not reported."
Make/Model: LSA Description:
Date: 07/21/2008 Time: 2100
Event Type: Accident Highest Injury:
Fatal Mid Air: N Missing:
City: NEWARK State: IL Country:
AIRCRAFT CRASHED UNDER UNKNOWN CIRCUMSTANCES, THE ONE PERSON
ON BOARD WAS
FATALLY INJURED, NEAR NEWARK, IL
INJURY DATA Total
# Crew: 1 Fat:
# Pass: 0 Fat:
Fat: 0 Ser:
WEATHER: NOT REPORTED
Activity: Unknown Phase:
Unknown Operation: OTHER
FAA FSDO: LINCOLN, NE
Entry date: 07/22/2008