FAA releases preliminary cause of S-2T crash

(Last Updated On: January 29, 2016)
Geoffrey "Craig" Hunt
Geoffrey “Craig” Hunt. Image courtesy of Mr. Hunt’s family.

The Federal Aviation Administration’s web site lists the preliminary cause of the crash of Tanker 81, an S-2T, as a “wing striking a tree”. That is consistent with information we have from witnesses of the accident.

The Fresno Bee reported that Keith Halloway, a spokesman for NTSB which is the lead investigating agency, said Wednesday evening that the board may have a preliminary report next week, but determining a probable cause for the crash could take 12 to 18 months.

The pilot of the S-2T that died in the air tanker crash on October 7 was Geoffrey “Craig” Hunt, age 62, of San Jose. He was a 13-year veteran pilot with DynCorp International which has the contract to maintain and operate the 23 S-2T air tankers for CAL FIRE. Mr. Hunt was attempting to drop retardant on the Dog Rock Fire near Yosemite National Park in California when the accident occurred.

More information:

Geoffrey "Craig" Hunt
Geoffrey “Craig” Hunt. Photo courtesy of Mr. Hunt’s family.

3 thoughts on “FAA releases preliminary cause of S-2T crash”

  1. First of all let me express my condolences.

    It is important to note that in the FAA report that they do not give a “cause” The FAA report provides a description of the accident. The article above makes it sound like the accident occured because he hit a tree.

    It will take quite some time to determine “the cause”. Something caused the aircraft to hit its wing on the tree. It could be any thing from pilot incapacitation to an aircraft component failure.

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