'Confusion' in cockpit seconds before deadly Addison Airport crash, NTSB says

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Investigators said voices in the cockpit indicated there were problems and "confusion" right before a small plane crashed, killing 10 people at the Addison Airport on Sunday.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators are looking at the flight team’s training experience and the plane’s maintenance history. The plane crashed into an unoccupied hangar shortly after takeoff Sunday just after 9 a.m. They were headed to St. Petersburg, Forida.

The pilot discovered a problem with the left engine of the small plane seconds before it crashed. The NTSB gave a brief play-by-play of the incident. However, it could be days or even weeks until they determine what exactly went wrong.

New video provided to the NTSB shows the moments before a twin engine plane crashed in to the Addison airport hangar with ten people inside.

As more of the wreckage is removed for analysis, the NTSB is revealing details from the cockpit recorder.

“Crew comment consistent with confusion occurred about 12 seconds before the end of the recording. Crew comment regarding a problem with the left engine occurred about 8 seconds before the end of the recording,” said NTSB Vice Chairman Bruce Landsberg. “So that’s all we’re authorized to release. When we get the transcript published in the docket, then you can read precisely what the crew was saying.”

All ten victims of the plane crash have now been identified.

The pilot was 71-year-old Howard Cassady and 28-year-old Matthew Palmer was the co-pilot.

Steve Thelen and his wife, Gina Thelen, were from Plano.

A family of four was also on board. Ornella and Brian Ellard were with their children on board: 13-year-old Dylan and 15-year-old Alice.

John and Mary Titus also died in the crash. Mary was the mixed doubles director for the Tennis Competitors of Dallas.

The NTSB will now recreate the flight path with a drone. The team recovered at least three videos of the crash from the airport.

“So the video and getting the multiple vantage points allows our people to take a look with a high degree of accuracy,” Landsberg said.

The engine will possibly be the biggest indicator of what went wrong. It’s something investigators say will take time to piece back together.

“We are going to treat it like an onion,” said Jennifer Rodi with the NTSB. “So we’ll slowly take the outboard pieces out and peel away to see what the damage is and understand if it’s damage related to impact or is this damage related to a problem with the engine.”

Investigators said the plane’s landing gear was down and the plane was fully intact when it crashed.