An Air Accident Investigation Unit report into a fatal plane crash in West Waterford in March of this year has concluded that engine failure due to icing is likely the reason the aircraft went down.
84-year-old pilot Dave Ryan was killed when his light aircraft was forced to make an emergency landing near woodlands on the outskirts of Dungarvan.
The AAIU report found that the amateur built aircraft was maintained and fueled to the approved standard and that no significant pre-existing mechanical defects were detected.
The Pilot had passed the relevant medical examination one month prior and was in good health.
The report suggests that weather conditions were such that there existed a risk of serious induction icing.
Witnesses in the vicinity reported hearing sudden loud bangs or backfires from the aircraft as it passed to the North East over Dungarvan Bay.
The engine then went silent an the craft made a definite turn in a westerly direction towards Dungarvan golf course.
The AAIU report concludes that the engine failure was likely caused as a result of the induction air being restricted by icing.
The Post-mortem report states that the Pilot died from ‘multiple injuries’ sustained in ‘an aircraft crash’ and that there were no other factors involved.
On the evidence available, it was not possible to determine the circumstances that led to the final flight path of the aircraft.