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Museum: Antique biplane damaged in aborted takeoff; no one injured

By Daniel Dunkle | Aug 25, 2014
Courtesy of: Lt. Kirk Guerrette Knox County Sheriff's Office This 1930 Pitcairn biplane received minor damage in an aborted takeoff Aug. 23 in Owls Head. The pilot, Tom Rudder, was not injured.

Owls Head — A 1930 biplane from Owls Head Transportation Museum was damaged during an aborted takeoff Aug. 23 at about 6:20 p.m., according to a press release from the museum.

No one was injured in the crash, according to Knox County Regional Airport Manager Jeffrey Northgraves.

The plane, a 1930 Pitcairn PA-7S Sport Mailwing, was piloted by Tom Rudder, a museum volunteer, who was the only occupant.

"...A contingent of four vintage biplanes from the Owls Head Transportation Museum collection were slated to perform a flyover of the museum’s Barnstormers Ball," said the press release. The Mailwing "experienced mechanical difficulties and the pilot chose to abort takeoff. "

"The aircraft sustained minor damage and was removed from the scene by museum staff and volunteers. It will undergo repair in the museum’s aircraft restoration hangar and is expected to be flying again for the 2015 season," the press release states.

Northgraves reported the plane tipped forward onto its nose, doing minor damage, and that there was damage to the landing gear.

Representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration visited the museum Aug. 25, to perform an inspection of the aircraft, according to the museum press release, and the representatives classified the occurrence as an “incident.”

"Under FAA guidelines an incident is equated to an aircraft-involved situation where very minimal damage occurs," the museum reported.

"This incident was not a crash or crash-landing," the museum reported.

The Knox County Sheriff's Office responded to the incident.

(Photo by: Lt. Kirk Guerrette Knox County Sheriff's Office)
This image shows damage the plane received to its nacelle, the housing for the engine at the front. (Courtesy of: Lt. Kirk Guerrette Knox County Sheriff's Office)
This 2013 file photo pictures a 1930 Pitcairn PA-7S Sport Mailwing. The aircraft sustained minor damage during an aborted takeoff on Saturday, August 23. It is expected to be flying again for the 2015 season. (Courtesy of: Owls Head Transportation Museum)
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Comments (2)
Posted by: Bridget & Richard Qualey/Stetson | Aug 25, 2014 00:08

Maggie, I thought the same thing after I read the article that said that the plane had a "hard landing" yet someone decided to use the sensationalized use of plane "crash" in the headline.

Posted by: Michael McMahon | Aug 24, 2014 20:20

It's all semantics Maggie. Is not a fender bender a crash? In this case it appears to be a hard landing which resulted in a crash, which damaged the nose of the aircraft. I don't see any need to pick apart the reporting of this story. Regardless, it was a good landing because the pilot walked away.



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