Chinese student pilot killed in propeller accident at Castle Airport

flight_log_bookA 26-year-old Chinese student pilot of Sierra Flight School at Castle Air Force Base was killed on Saturday when he ran into the spinning propeller of his Cessna 150 airplane.

The whirring propeller struck him in the head which caused his death immediately.

The Merced County Sheriff’s Department said the student pilot, was from China. Sherrif further revealed that victim flew only with a second student, which violated Federal Aviation Administration regulations requiring an adult flight instructor to accompany a student, the sheriff’s department said.

A group picture of student pilots of Sierra Flight School
A group picture of student pilots of Sierra Flight School

Sierra Flight School is known for large community of foreign student pilots of which majority comes from China. This accident shocked the students & staff at the Sierra Academy of Aeronautics. The chief pilot says this is the first ground-based fatality in the school’s 44 year history. And authorities say it could have been avoided.

Tom MacKenzie from the Merced Co. Sheriff’s Dept. said the students flew together to Visalia, then switched seats in the dual-control, two-seat plane. “Both of them were certified to fly solo or with an instructor, but they’re not allowed to be together. The duo’s decision to fly together may have contributed to the student’s death.

When they landed at Castle Air Force Base, they spotted a fuel truck and believed the driver would report them to the flight school if they spotted him. The passenger, who had been in the primary pilot seat, took off on foot while the victim got out of the co-pilot seat and came around the front of the plane. Deputies believe that while the student was attempting to get back into the pilot seat he “misjudged the distance” and was struck in the head by the propeller.

The two students’ names were not released while authorities sought to contact the Chinese Consulate and, through it, their parents.

While contacted, Jim Murray of the Federal Aviation Administration said affirmed that a student pilot is not allowed to carry a passenger.

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A mail from American School of Aviation student.


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I am Bhavana Naik. On 26th June, 08 there was an open meeting at the Barracks of American school of aviation , and so me and my sister who had paid $17,000/- to ASA had gone to attained the meeting. Singh was talking to the students that FAA had called him and asking him “sir when and where are you opening your next school,so that we can issue the license”…..this is all fake. He is trying to fool the students. Because FAA does not talk to anyone on phone and they don’t keep calling anyone. Later he said to the students that “who told you that my planes are grounded,stop spreading out rumors.”………what does this Singh think that whatever the media says is all fake and if the planes are not grounded then why is school closed?……I asked Singh. “where is my $17,000/-, give me the accounts”?. on this he said “*#***#**”…….and later he asked his stooges (students) to push us and assault us and throw us out of the meeting. the students pushed us physically and used bad language with us. Later we called the Sherriff and lodged a complaint against Singh, his wife Reny and the students who assaulted us physically.
I just want the world to know that how this Singh is and plus about the students, because the world feels sad for the students but yet there are some idiots who don’t deserve a pity but they deserve a good punishment for being the stooges of Mr.Singh.
I need help whether how can we FIX , Mr.Singh. He is now trying to open another Aviation school in Sacramento, we are trying our level best to stop that. Please suggest me as how can he go behind bars. If anyone knows more about him please come forward so that we can save the world from such CROOKS.
Thankyou.

Please feel free to send your comments on this post & help the suffering students of American School of Aviation.