NTSB Factual Report Shows Treatments For Macular
The 86-year-old pilot of a Cessna
206 which crashed in 2008 killing all 6 occupants was warned not to
drive a car due to his failing eyesight, medical records show. An
NTSB Factual Report indicates he had not reported the problems on
his most recent application for a medical certificate, which was
dated May 4th, 2007.
The pilot, Gene Damschroder, had been offering sightseeing rides
during a Lions Club "Fly-In Breakfast" fundraising event at Fremont
Airport in Fremont, Ohio. The club said the airplane rides were not
part of the event, and they received no donations from the rides,
for which Damschroder was reportedly charging $20, or $10 if the
passenger was under 50 pounds. Witnesses said they do not recall
any passenger being weighed.
The investigation revealed Damschroder was issued a commercial
pilot certificate with airplane single -engine and multiengine land
and sea ratings based upon military competency by the Civil
Aeronautics Administration on March 6, 1945.
According to the factual report:
"On October 10, 1987, he received his last issuance for an
airman certificate and/or rating. The pilot was issued a Douglas
DC-3 airplane rating at with a total flight time of 22,620 hours,
which was listed on his airman certificate and/or rating
application. The FAA inspector who issued the certificate checked
the following statement indicating that he "personally reviewed
this applicant's pilot logbook..."
On February 6, 1964, he was issued an initial flight instructor
certificate, which was last renewed on January 14, 2007, with
single- and multiengine airplane and instrument ratings based upon
completion of a flight instructor renewal course.
On December 19, 1994, he was issued a mechanic certificate with
airframe and powerplant ratings. On January 12, 2007, he received a
renewal for inspection authorization based on having performed 9
annual inspections on aircraft.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Investigator-In-Charge (IIC) did not receive any of the accident
pilot's logbooks following requests made to the pilot's son during
the on-scene portion and subsequent portions of the investigation.
The pilot's wife and son stated that they did not know where the
pilot's logbooks were.
The accident pilot's airman medical certificate application,
dated July 29, 1988, lists his total airplane flight time as 25,000
hours and 250 hours in the past 6 months. Subsequent medical
applications had the following total and 6 month flight times,
The NTSB report indicates that Damschroder had been in four
automobile accidents between 1998 and 2007. His distance vision was
reported to be 20/100 in both eyes, and he had been told twice by
doctors not to drive a car. He had failed to report those doctor
visits on his medical certificate application, according to the
The NTSB has not issued any probable cause for the accident. The
factual report does indicate that "the same aviation medical
examiner (AME) on each application for Airman Medical Certificate
and associated examinations since 1998. The FAA decertified the AME
on January 28, 2009, for improper issuance of medical