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NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Fatal Texas Midair Collision

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released the preliminary report on the fatal midair collision between a B-17G and P-63F Kingcobra during the Wings Over Dallas airshow on November 12. According to the NTSB report, there were no altitude deconfliction briefed before the flight or while the airplanes were in the air. Altitude deconfliction procedures are established in the event pilots find themselves at an improper altitude during the flight. Six people were killed in the… ( More...

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Larry Horton 13
Okay for the people saying the investigation is a waste of time based on the preliminary report this is a standard report. It merely reports what happened and what conditions are. If you were expecting a definitive report you don't understand how this works. The NTSB will spend the coming year thoroughly investigating all aspects of the weather, aircraft performance and crew actions. None of this can or should be done in a rushed manner. It needs to be fully understood to prevent future occurance. For those who say the report is blaming the air boss you could not be more wrong. It reported what the air boss said and if you interpret that to mean he was at fault that is merely your inaccurate interpretation. I have flown on that plane several times dating back to the mid/late 60s. I spent the last year working with one of the crew to develope a history of the plane. I do not want them to rush. I want to see them take their time and develope an accurate picture of what happened to prevent future tragedy. Simply saying the fighter ran into the bomber does not do it.
sweeper239 2
Thanks for the thoughtful comment
rlachell 11
As an amateur WWII historian all I can think of when I see these pics and videos is what the aircrews who flew B17s in combat must have experienced. Either seeing another plane hit or being in one. I simply cannot imagine.
Jim Dawson 5
That’s what I have thought of repeatedly after this occurred right in front of us.
Jeff Steiner 8
I really appreciated Juan Browne's work on this accident, on his blancolirio YouTube channel. The first video below was just 2 days after the event, and then he did a followup on 2 December that reviewed the NTSB report. The context and in-depth review he provides is top-notch!

(Because we can't do live links in these comments, just highlight the link text, right click, and choose "Open" or "Go to", depending on which browser you're using.)

14 Nov 22 video:

2 Dec 22 followup video:
DracoVolantis 2
Agreed, I was going to recommend these two videos but you beat me to it :)
Leander Williams 2
I agree with you. Been following blancolirio channel for quite a while. Even alerted Juan to a couple of SoCal crashes. He is spot on in his analysis.
Milo Swanson 2
Quite simply, the B-17 was flying relatively straight and level, and the P-63 approached it in a tight left turn. The P-63 was traveling faster in an attempt to cut the corner to 'take the lead'. While doing so, the P-63 pilot had lost sight of the B-17 under the nose/wings of his aircraft. Boom.

If you do a 3-D flight simulation/recreation from the perspective of the P-63 pilot of BOTH aircraft using available GPS data- and recreated flight paths from the video footage, this is EXACTLY what happened. Like most fighters of its day, the P-63 has no visibility under its long nose from the cockpit!
Thomas Clark 2
Larry, you hit the nail on the head rushing to an air crash conclusion never solves anything!

however, it is sure good to hear from a fellow airline "Braniff & SWA mechanic. TP Clark retired lead mechanic SWA take care and glad to hear another ole fart is still kicking!!!!
macswain 1
Awesome photograph - horrific content . . .
srobak -1
I'm really bothered by the fact they are trying to hang this on the air boss vs. the cobra pilot.
James Hathcoat 1
The air boss is responsible for the safe management of the air show. When he told the fighters to take the lead, they would have assumed he was assuring them it was safe for them to maneuver to the lead position. When I was flying formation in the air force, whoever was lead, or manager of the formation, was responsible for the safe management of what was going on. And you did what the lead told you to do. You assumed that what he, (back in my day), told you to do was safe to do. If you didn't do what he told you to do, then you were putting the entire flight at risk. End of story.

I spent 20 years as an air force pilot and another 18 as a charter and airline pilot, retiring 15 years ago. When I started watching the videos of this accident, I could not believe there were all those airplanes flying around in the airport traffic area at different speeds and all at the same altitude. I really wondered, "Was there anyone in charge of this mess?"
Leander Williams 1
@srobak.. The P-63 pilot would not have been where he was if NOT directed by the air boss. There is no blame other than inexperience by the air boss. No high-performance aircraft should be at the same altitude as a lumbering bomber. I'm positive there was no malicious intent, but air shows are fluid environments, and it takes experience to read circumstances unfolding rapidly in front of you.
avionik99 -8
Dont bother to read the article. It says nothing we already didnt know. Says one airplane ran into another. Yup thats what happened alright duh!
Patrick Clyne 7
The purpose of the investigation is not simply to describe what happened but to determine why it occurred and what lessons can be learned from the event.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

tpmorrow 5
I "seen" a video?
Owen Grzanich 1
As a drone owner... I believe that.
Jim Myers -3
This isn't the place for fake news and conspiracy theories - take yourself to Truth Social and you'll fit right in.
Jim Dawson 0
That’s exactly what you just dud
Jim Dawson 0
That’s exactly what you just did
Robert Mack 1
Tlfys1, I have seen a video showing an object and three things immediately came to mind: 1. was it possibly a bird? 2. Was it possibly a drone? 3. Was the video possibly photo-shopped? The impact with whatever it was seemed difficult to ascertain while a tag depicted “loss of rpm” and a second one suggested the P63 pilot was attempting an air start. Very very tragic - deeply saddened for everybody’s loss. If it was a drone it’s difficult to comprehend why the drone pilot would: 1. Choose to fly in the same airspace (even in my cognitive-declining state it is incomprehensible). 2. How he could even obtain LAANC (authorization) - especially in a Class B environment during an active air show. 3. Was he flying at a max of 400’? 4. Was he operating VLOS, EVLOS, or would he have obtained a waiver for BVLOS? 5. Was he operating independently or did he have observers? (SMH - after 45 years on the flightdeck I am presently using a drone for Private Investigations. If it was a drone the drone PIC and all those associated with him are looking at six counts of homicide. Before rushing to judgement, maybe we can give the FAA and NTSB time to complete their investigation. My deepest condolences to the crews’ families, friends, and loved ones.

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