August 17, 2008, Rhinebeck, N.Y., Nieuport 24bis Experimental


The airplane was destroyed when it impacted trees and terrain while maneuvering. The airline transport pilot was fatally injured. Visual conditions prevailed for the local air show flight.

The accident flight was a simulated dogfight. The other airplane participating was a Fokker DR-1. According to the Fokker pilot, he and the accident pilot performed a series of 360-degree turns and lead changes. Both airplanes then turned away from each other.

As the Fokker pilot turned back around toward the show line, he noticed the Nieuport beginning a left turn. He looked away for a moment and then saw the Nieuport in a spin before disappearing into trees. The wreckage was consumed by a post-impact fire.

The pilot completed the operators initial training in the Nieuport 24 on July 10, 2008. According to the qualification record, the pilot had completed five flights, for a total of 1.0 hours of training, and had flown about three additional hours in the accident airplane since that time.


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