Pilot dies in Matinicus Island crash

An aerial view of Matinicus Island.
Robert F. Bukaty | AP
An aerial view of Matinicus Island.
By Dawn Gagnon, BDN Staff
Posted Oct. 05, 2011, at 7:06 p.m.

MATINICUS ISLAND, Maine — A pilot for Penobscot Island Air was killed Wednesday when his airplane crashed while landing on Matinicus Island in windy conditions.

The pilot, 57-year-old Donald Campbell of Waldoboro, was the only person on the plane, a Cessna 207, at the time of the crash, which occurred shortly before 6 p.m., Roger Wolverton, the company’s chief pilot, confirmed.

Wolverton said that Campbell was delivering freight and groceries to the island, 20 miles off the coast, and that he had left Knox Regional Airport at 5:15 p.m.

Campbell’s family has been notified, Wolverton said.

The pilot’s death has hit the small flying service hard, Wolverton acknowledged, the emotion evident in his voice.

“It’s been rough,” he said. “He had nearly completed his run.”

The Knox County Sheriff’s Department received the report of the crash just before 6 p.m.

The Cessna flipped and crashed in woods on Matinicus Island after hitting a power line while attempting to land on the island’s dirt runway around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Jim Peters said Wednesday night. Conditions were windy at the time, he said.

The National Weather Service said there were sustained winds of 30 knots and gusts up to 44 knots around the time of the crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating, as it does with all fatal airplane crashes, spokesman Keith Halloway said late Wednesday night. It was not yet clear if the board would send one of its own investigators or obtain information through the FAA.

In July, a Penobscot Island Air Cessna 206 crashed in the water a couple hundred yards off the island. All four people aboard survived.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

http://bangordailynews.com/2011/10/05/news/midcoast/small-plane-crashes-off-matinicus-island/ printed on December 26, 2014