Plane Crash Kills Stunt Pilot Ahead of New York Air Show

August 28, 2015 Last Updated: August 28, 2015

An  experimental aircraft crashed, killing the pilot, at the Stewart International Airport  in New Windsor on Friday at around 2 p.m. The pilot, flying solo, was practicing stunt maneuvers in preparation for the New York Air Show. 

According to Captain Brendan Casey of the New York State Police in a statement made late Friday afternoon, the crash occurred in a wooded area just off the tarmac on property adjacent to the tarmac in the Town of New Windsor. No people or buildings were harmed.

It appeared from videos that while the pilot was in some type of climb or aerobatic maneuver that a part of the rear of the plane broke off. It is not known if the pilot attempted to eject or if he was wearing a parachute.

Witnesses say it looks as if the pilot, whose name has not been released, steered away from bystanders at about 100-200 feet away. 

“The joint investigation of this accident is being conducted by the NY state police and the National Transportation Safety Board,” Casey said. “The New York air show activities this weekend will go on as scheduled.”

According to Casey, the air show followed all the FAA protocols for safety, and pilots have a safety briefing every morning.

All aircraft are inspected by the FAA before a show. “It’s part of their protocol,” Casey said. “Any of the aircraft that fly have to go through an FAA certification process and they have their schedule for that. “

“Unfortunately, I think it just a tragic accident where it was some type of equipment failure that led to this. I don’t know if there is anything from a safety standpoint that could have been done to prevent this,” Casey said.

The website carbonfiberairshows.com says the G202 was designed by Richard Giles in the late 1990’s with the purpose of “unlimited aerobatics.” 

“Powered by a four cylinder 238 horsepower Lycoming engine, it is faster and more maneuverable than many more powerful aerobatic aircraft,” the website says.

This reporter flew in the G202 plane on Thursday. Casey said the thoughts of those at Stewart Airport go out to the family of the deceased pilot.

To contact this reporter, email holly.kellum@epochtimes.com