After Crash Of Canadian Plane In Nashville, A Mystery As To Why–And How It Went Unnoticed

The accident occured on the runway (marked in yellow) closest to the control tower (red). The terminal (orange) and hangers (blue) are also nearby.  FAA map edited by Nina Cardona/WPLN

The accident occurred on a runway (marked in yellow) close to the control tower (red). The terminal (orange) and hangers (blue) are also nearby. FAA map edited by Nina Cardona/WPLN

UPDATE (10/31/2013): The Davidson County Medical Examiner has confirmed Michael Callan was the pilot of the plane.  The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reports Callan was 45 years old.

The first day of investigation into a plane crash in Nashville is raising more questions that it answers.

The four-seater plane was Canadian with a flight plan that called for landing in Ontario, so why was it in Tennessee?

The only person on board died and has not yet been positively identified.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Jay Neylon says there’s still no clear idea of just when the crash happened, either. At this point he says they only know that it took place some time after 2:00 am, when Nashville International staff performed a sweep of the runway but before 8:45, when another general aviation pilot spotted the burned wreckage.

Which raises another question: how did the tower not know a plane had crashed and caught on fire?

There was very dense fog at the time, affecting visibility. And once examiners have finished combing the crash site, Neylon says they’ll take a close look at air traffic control tapes and radar to determine whether there was any sort of communication from the plane or an indication that it was there.

Neylon says it will take about ten days to gather facts. It could be a year before investigators suggest a probable cause.

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