Tue, Dec 21, 2004
Aviators Say Tower Lighting Was Inadequate
Southern California pilots say the KFI radio tower near
Fullerton was an accident waiting to happen. That accident indeed
happened on Sunday, when a Cessna 182 collided with the tower,
killing both occupants, destroying the aircraft and bringing down
the 820-foot (MSL) tall structure.
"[It's] incredulous that we have a situation like this," Al
Pregler, a retired UAL pilot, told KCAL Television in Los Angeles
Sunday. "[It was an] accident looking for a place to happen and it
happens every so many years, and it just so happens it happened
Pregler, a member of the Fullerton Airport Pilots Association,
was part of a letter-writing campaigned aimed at getting KFI to put
strobe lights on the tower. That never happened, according to the
Whittier Daily News.
"People who are strangers don't even know it is here until all
of a sudden it pops up in their face. With a case of luck, fate,
whatever you want to call it, they usually miss it," pilot Richard
Fields told KCAL.
Pilot Richard Fields also wrote a letter. "[On a] particularly
clear day... when you are looking down, the tower gets lost in all
the colors and patterns that are on the ground - ground clutter,
you can't see it. It is very difficult to see, even if you know
where it is," he told the TV station.
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