Pilot fell out of aircraft and hit tail, causing deadly 2022 crash that killed 2, NTSB says

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The pilot of an experimental aircraft fell out of the plane and struck the tail, causing a crash that killed him and his passenger in 2022 in Pennsylvania, federal authorities said.

The “experimental amateur-built” Bearhawk Patrol plane crashed the afternoon of Oct. 29, 2022, at a farm near Hanover Township, according to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board released Wednesday.

The Luzerne County coroner’s office identified the two killed as Michael Bowen, 59, of Jonestown; and Ronald Snyder 76, of Bernville. The report did not mention the pilot and “pilot-rated passenger” by name, but identified them by their ages. Snyder was the pilot.

Before the fatal flight, the pilot told a friend the airplane had a rigging issue that seemed to cause the plane to “kick” laterally while turning, the report said.