The airplane was then observed tracking toward the Bethpage area while descending. The next several
transmissions between the controller and pilot revealed
that the pilot was unable to see the runway while the
controller continued to provide heading and distance to
the Bethpage runway.
Radar and radio contact were eventually lost and
emergency responders were notified of the accident.
The passenger was interviewed after the accident. He
reported that the flight was in cruise when he heard a
loud "pop" sound, with a flicker of light from the
engine area, followed by an "oil smell." The engine then
began to "sputter" and lose power. The pilot attempted
to restart the engine without success.
The pilot, age 59, held a commercial pilot certificate
with airplane single engine, multi-engine, and
instrument airplane ratings. He reported 3,300 hours
total flight time on his most recent application for an
FAA second-class medical certificate, dated December 22,
2014. Records provided by the FAA revealed that he
completed a Part 135.299 line check (check ride) on June
The main wreckage was found inverted and burned, on the
railroad tracks for the
Long Island Rail Road. The
wreckage debris field was about 100 ft in length and
about 20 ft wide, oriented on a heading of about 150
degrees. All major structural components of the aircraft
were found within the confines of the debris field. The
propeller assembly separated from the engine during the
accident sequence. The right wing was found under the
grade crossing cantilever arm, which separated from its
mount structure during the initial impact. The engine
was retained for further examination.
An examination of the area of the former Bethpage Airport revealed that industrial
buildings occupied the former runway surface area.
The accident site was located about 0.25 nm
northwest of the former runway's approach end.