01 July 1983

The accident (not mine!)

My home airport (Dayton General) was closed because of construction equipment on the runway. I had arranged to do my long instrument cross-country with my instructor, starting from a nearby airport in Middletown, Ohio. About midnight we were finishing the long cross-country approaching Middletown. We heard a call on the radio from an airplane requesting a vector (directions) to Dayton General. My instructor then broadcasted on the radio, "Don't you know about the NOTAM at Dayton General?"

We heard no further response on the radio. That night that airplane followed the vector provided to him by Dayton Approach to Dayton General airport. He landed on the runway and crashed into the construction equipment. Fortunately he was not seriously injured, but his airplane was substantially damaged.

A few days later I got a call from the FAA investigating the accident. They had tapes and they knew that an airplane in the vicinity had warned, albeit indirectly, Dayton Approach and the pilot about the NOTAM at Dayton General. I referred the investigator to my instructor since he was the pilot-in-command. Errors by the airport manager, Dayton Approach, the pilot of the wrecked plane, and even my instructor and I contributed to the accident. The airport manager had not disabled the pilot controlled lighting system. Dayton approach and the wrecked plane's pilot did not make the effort to discover the NOTAM. My instructor and I did not clearly communicate the danger.

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