Plane that crashed at Mutiny Bay was recently serviced, had no flight recorder

Wreckage from a seaplane crash that killed 10 people in Mutiny Bay over Labor Day weekend will likely be recovered later this month, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.

The NTSB released a preliminary report on Friday outlining details of the flight and the plane, but stopping short of naming a potential cause of the crash, in which a veteran pilot and nine passengers were killed in a sudden crash and confusing in Puget Sound. The plane had undergone a 100-hour inspection just three days before the incident.

Immediately after, only small pieces of debris, personal items and a body, identified as 29-year-old Gabby Hanna, were recovered from the September 4 crash that killed 10 people after witnesses said the plane had disappeared in the water. Sandy Williams, a Spokane community advocate who founded the Black Lens newspaper and the Carl Maxey Center, was among the dead.

The NTSB announced on Friday that it had secured the work-class remote-operated vehicles required to begin recovering the wreckage located more than 150 feet below the surface last weekend. These recovery efforts are scheduled to begin on September 26, more than three weeks after the crash.

In Friday’s report, based largely on witness reports due to a lack of physical evidence, the NTSB noted that a “substantial” impact to the plane occurred after it “almost vertical” in Puget Sound, just off Whidbey Island.

In the report, 911 calls, and interviews, witnesses described the plane as turning while descending and one reported hearing an engine noise with no “change in pitch” during the descent.

The aircraft recently underwent 100-hour inspections on August 16 and September 1. During the September inspection, a left rudder retraction cable was replaced. In August, the horizontal stabilizer hinge bolts, a right engine igniter and a left float lock latch were replaced, according to the report.

In August and September, inspections were performed on the lower control column assembly and the elevator control flap, as required by Federal Aviation Administration Airworthiness Directives.

Investigators will use additional evidence from the wreckage to complete the full investigation, which can take up to 24 months.

According to the NTSB, the plane was equipped with a King 560 enhanced ground proximity warning system, which tracks limited parametric flight data but was not “collision protected”. It was not equipped “and was not required to be equipped” with a flight data recorder or a cockpit voice recorder, according to the report.