Small Planes in Fauquier County Crash Registered to FAA, NTSB Employees

Two dead following mid-air collision

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Transportation Safety Board of Canada is investigating a fatal midair collision in Fauquier Co., after FAA and NTSB employees were linked to the planes involved. News4's Jane Watrel reports. (Published Tuesday, May 29, 2012)

    Investigators learned that the planes involved in Monday afternoon's mid-air crash in Fauquier County were registered to employees of the FAA and the NTSB.

    Two people died after two small planes collided about 4 p.m. and then crashed to the ground about a mile apart from each other in southern Fauquier County.

    A Beechcraft BE-35 registered to an NTSB employee burst into flames when it hit the ground in a wooded area and it was completely destroyed by fire, said Corinne Geller of Virginia State Police. The pilot and passenger died, but it's unknown if either was the owner of the plane. The bodies were recovered from the burnt wrecakge and taken to the Office of the Medical Examiner in Manassas.

    The pilot and owner of the second plane -- a 1965 Piper PA-28 -- was identified as 70-year-old Thomas R. Provin, of Broad Run, Va. He was taken to Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg, Va. He remained hospitalized Tuesday but there's no word on his condition.

    NTSB said Tuesday afternoon the owner was an FAA employee. The FAA said he was an accident investigator flying as a private pilot on his personal time when the crash occurred.

    Because the planes were owned and/or operated by FAA and NTSB employees, NTSB, after consulting with the FAA, requested the Transportation Safety Board of Canada investigate the crash to avoid a conflict of interest.

    “This accident hits especially close to home, with the involvement of an NTSB employee,” NTSB Chairman Deborah Hersman said in a news release Tuesday afternoon. "I'm grateful to TSB-Canada Chair Wendy Tadros for agreeing to conduct the investigation and the NTSB stands ready to support and assist them in any way we can."

    TSB-Canada confirmed it is deploying an investigation team. An NTSB representative will observe the investigation.

    Stay tuned to News4 and NBCWashington.com as this story develops.