67 thoughts on “Roy Halladay Killed In Icon Crash

  1. Between raising their purchase price by $100k after all the bad PR last year and killing 3 people in 5 months I think it’s time for ICON to liquidate its assets and call it a day. The plane they promised has never materialized, and the unbelievably expensive product they are pushing now seems to only excel at killing its pilot.

  2. I couldn’t have said it better. No box canyon to worry about turning in. The FAA will probably say maneuvering flight too close to the water. Turned too tight, stalled because he was too slow for an accelerated turn, and didn’t have enough altitude to recover in.

  3. His comment “recounting how he loved to fly it low over the water like a fighter plane.”
    I’m sure that will be the major contributing factor to crash

  4. Drew, that’s a very short sided opinion. An airplane can‘t bend the physical laws. If not used correctly, it will kill you, but that’s not the airplane‘s fault. Flying into a non-exit canyon is not the airplane‘s fault. I would not be surprised if yesterday‘s crash was because of low level „fighter jet flying“ above the Gulf of Mexico. Done by a relatively inexperienced pilot.
    By the way: it was clear from the very beginning, that from a certain point onwards, Icon would raise the sricker price.

  5. Use the plane were it’s build for ” to fly” not to play at low altitude.
    If you fly at safe altitude i don’t think the Icon in make any difference with other aircrafts.

  6. What happened to the parachute deployment . If low-level flight is not advised, why do it.. Now you are abusing the product and looking to blame others for your choices when you come up short. The A5 is still a wonder.

  7. I’m sorry Drew that you so quickly come to judgement. The facts about two people being killed are all that is true. Whether the plane is at fault has zero clarity at this point.

    We do know that the two employees first killed had absolutely nothing to do with the airplane. We do not know a shred of evidence, yet, on Mr. Halladay’s death. But we do know that he expressed his desires to fly the plane very low over the water. That sort of behavior tends to be performed by pilots who are not known for being safety oriented, but thrill oriented.

    And neither of these events have anything to do with the aircraft’s selling price.

    I would hope that each of us exercise great caution before we disparage others, or an entire organization.

    Flip10

  8. It’s a bit early to throw in the towel. There’s no evidence that the design is flawed. The incident earlier this year happened because the pilot flew into the wrong canyon. It too early to tell what happened today and I’m not going to speculate. Icon does definitely have a PR problem though. First and foremost they’re selling an experience, basically a jet ski for the sky. These incidents will probably force them to change their sales pitch. So the question is, can they justify the price they’re asking without the promise of exhilarating flying adventures. The recent price increase only compounds the problem. For all that I’d still get in one and fly it tomorrow if I could.

  9. ” … he loved to fly it low over the water like a fighter plane.”
    I would bet dollars to donuts he was skimming over the water because of the sense of speed it gives, and caught a wave — which tumbled the aircraft, resulting in knocking him out and then he drowned from that.

    I can’t blame the plane if that is what actually happened.

  10. As the Beech Bonanza “V” tail killed doctors and lawyers at first……I believe it’s time to allow ICON to excel at this revered spot in the aviation mind, and come to its own defense and prove that their aircraft is killing due to “pilot error”.

    After all…it was never the Dehavilland Comet fault, or the DC-10 with faulty cargo door latches and the highest AD issuance record for various “faults” of any commercial airliner…or the F-15. F-16, F-18, F-22, F-35 not being able to provide O2 at levels to attain pilot consciousness……………..

    There’s something about this aircraft that makes people not take it seriously?

  11. Pilots need to be a pilot and receive special training (i.e. “water effect”) when flying really low. Apparently, it takes a little more than a novice to fly this aircraft.

  12. What a shame, my condolences to his amily and friends. He did say he liked to fly low and fast over the water like a fighter, it’s not to hard to imagine his flying into the water before realizing how close he was to it especially if it was relatively calm.
    I would love to have an Icon and would buy one if I ever win the lottery.

  13. My concerns since seeing the earliest media demos have been the aggressive low altitude maneuvering and the notion of marketing to non-Pilot sport recreation enthusiasts…… aka the “Snowmobile Crowd”. It’s hard enough to safely transition non-pilots into airmen. Throw in the low altitude ops and the fighter pilot mantra and the resulting mix is dangerous! Many will die!

  14. I dont think that your seeing the bigger picture. The aircraft in question may have exceeded its cost estimations or goals but most reviewers are giving it very good scores. I think a closer look at the pilots behaviour and likely poor choices may be the bigger issue. Fixing poor choices begins before you purchase any aircraft.

  15. Terribly sad. Concern that two fatal accidents have taken place in close proximity to each other from a timing perspective. Need to wait in NTSB investigation results.

  16. I’ll wait for the National Transportation Safety Board accident Report before I would right off the company..
    The first incident was obviously pilot error….Flying into unfamiliar airspace at low altitude.
    It would be premature to guess at rhe cause of the second incident.

  17. Although, I am not thrilled with icon raising their purchase price of the plane the way they did, it is within their right. You want to pay it, buy it. I don’t think you can fault the company or the plane for bad pilot decisions. Flying into a no exit Canyon or flying low over the water like a fighter jet does not make for very responsible decision processes.

  18. Icon never killed anyone. “Flying it low like a fighter plane”. I think that says it all, not many Cessna 150 pilots say that

  19. That didn’t take long…. Sad to hear a great baseball player and apparently a great dude dies so young. I just read about him, and his A-5 in the past month. I was thinking it must be really cool to own such a plane… Condolences to his family.

  20. So,,,,,,,don’t buy one, Drew. Buy an old SeaBee, a Volmer Sportsman, deHavilland Beaver or a Cessna with floats instead. In Alaska, the latter two have killed numerous pilots over the years. Why? As with the two Icon crashes, the Alaskan pilots and passengers have all died because of pilot error, stupidity, incompetence and the fatalistic ignorance of pilotage risk mismanagement.

  21. Wow!!! Where has common sense gone in people. We judge what we don’t know. I think that is either a character flaw or down right stupidity. Sorry to call a spade a spade but what gives anyone the right to pass judgement on something as tragic as this and jump all over the Icon 5, as if it was human and had a mechanical or an aerodynamic flaw.

    Yes, extra caution must be given to an airplane that also doubles as a boat. And perhaps additional safeguards will be put forth but otherwise we need to step back, take a deep breath and let the authorities do their jobs. And while we’re at it, say a quick prayer for those that have lost people near and dear to them. And say a prayer for the fine builders of this beautiful plane. Regardless of what price they put on the plane, that has no bearing on any of this. This plane isn’t jinxed. Most accidents in flight are people that forget how dangerous it can be when flying just above the water or lose their concentration for a moment or were distracted at the wrong time.

    This whole thing is a tragedy. And I firmly believe that Icon will not be at fault in the least.

  22. As an accident investigator, I would recommend waiting until the facts from the NTSB come in before condemning the airplane.

  23. My instructor (Korean War Aviator) on my first hour of instruction said ” There are old pilots and bold pilots…But not to many old bold pilots”. Sorry to hear of his death. I am sure that the aviation community feels the same.

  24. Spent 20 yrs low and slow in a Scout. I’d never try it in a plane built to cruise. Function equals form and verse visa. We cannot outrun stupidity. You can’t even buy your way out. Ask John Denver

  25. I could belittle a pilot or a manufacturer without knowing the facts. I think it best to let the experts gather the info and tell us without adding our own drama or making someone look bad.

  26. I’m a student pilot, ( Solo Aviation, Ann Arbor ), and just 20 hours, plan to do my IFR , and CFI. I am quite sadden to here about this tragedy. As I have read some other comments, yes to does appear, that plane stalled, and he probably panicked, in the end result.

  27. Or, the Icon rep made a pre-emptive
    strike in the investigation to deflect blame from their product.
    Only one person knows for sure what happened, and he perished in the crash.
    Let’s let the investigation play out, and show respect for the deceased. It’s time for civility to have a rebirth.

  28. I have always felt that is plane is underpowered for its weight and you are always flying on the step with almost no room for error. When you match that with operations on water it is a very dangerous combination. It is not a plane for low time pilots either. This will cause insurance rates to sky rocket for the entire seaplane and light sport aviation community and probably the entire GA community.

  29. Law altitude!?!? Did you guys see the video he was flying in IFR? Not even a Boing 747. You gotta respect the machine or will kill you, like a Lion. But sure its not its fault right. Lets wait and respect the dead ones before “shoot the sheriff”….

  30. You guys are all forgetting the other aircraft sinking after breaking apart during a “hard landing” in Florida. Never mind the agressive maneuvers just prior to the accident. They show off the fighter pilot mentality in all their marketing and videos, then tell people not to do it. Price increases after increase, outsource to Mexico…the clock is ticking on these guys. Only and idiot would buy one now.

  31. I’m a pilot… own navajo and Cessna 185 on float… when I saw the video of the owner of the company riding the plane…. look so cool… like a toy… I would like one… ! But a toy that could be dangerous… 25 hours ?! With those hours your just doesn’t know what your doing… and flying low don’t give you the time to manoeuvre when something append.. flying low should be only when landing or takeoff.
    I know to have done it before could be really exciting to fly low… but one or two second… everything is over..
    Most of plane crash are pilot mistake.. just remember that.. also the creator of that little toy have probably 10000 hours of flight time… for him is like a bicycle… he should change is pitching video and be a bit more realistic… or having a msg at the end that say….. for major experience pilot…

  32. Sad to hear the news, and to likely expect this to seal the fate of Icon. I can only agree that it is way too early for any comments. But bad PR and assumptions made by many so-called “Aviation Experts” in the weeks to come may sign the deal for the company. We will have to wait for the NTSB-Report to reveal the causes of this tragic loss. Condolences to the family.

  33. I surmise low time flight history by Mr. Halladay. Condolences go out to his wife and two sons. I am not a pilot myself but a long time airplane flight operations reader. I think it is too early to place any blame on anything. I know just by reading thousands of comments from actual pilots that several factors have to be considered and I think that the NTSB is the organization qualified to do that. But curiosity and speculation will be rampant before the approved and published report comes out. The pr machine for the Icon A5 paints a very enthusiastic adventure for a LSA certified owner pilot. Given that Mr. Halladay only had this plane a little over 3 weeks I suspect a combination of factors contributed to this fatal flight.
    JC

  34. If anything, Icon needs to review their training and safety program, if it is indeed pilot error in this case, unfortunately they need to make it painfully clear what can happen if you don’t adhere to strick safety guidelines, and references to these three dead pilots as clear examples. What I’m saying is, they need to breed more fear into their training to get the cold blunt fact across to new pilots, you play in the environment this plane is capable of , you could pay, with your life.
    Kind of Ole school, where when you were 16, they used to show the Ole black and white blood and gore wreck movies to get the cold hard facts across about drinking and driving.

  35. Been watching this plane and its evolution from the beginning. They pushed to the fringe of the industry promising a plane that is like a car on the inside. This is unique in that people who want to fly but dont have the experience as a pilot come face to face with the physics of flying and can be unprepared. The responsibility is on the pilot to make sure the flight is safe, and in this case there are a lot of risks that other planes and pilots may never encounter. Blessings and Light to he and his family, and all of the Icon people.
    If I had that kind of money, I’d buy two Lake Renegades. That is partly because my Dad designed and developed it. Dont get me wrong, Id like to fly an Icon as much as anyone.

  36. Thomas Endriss said it perfectly as far as I’m concerned.

    You can’t blame a plane for pilot mistakes. The first crash was clearly pilot error. This one we have no details yet to make judgement on. That said, when someone says they like flying fast right above the water, it does provide a little insight and that may end up having something to do with the cause. If that’s it, once again, it’s not to be blamed on the airplane.

    There is risk involved in anything we do, but certainly you help minimize the risk with safe practices, and if you have a plane with a ‘chute, one of the things you can do is to fly at altitudes where the ‘chute is useable. That doesn’t mean I’d want to outlaw the ability to fly low over a lake, or along a shoreline, but, you have to accept the additional risk to do it, and had better be on your a-game.

    Regarding the cost of the plane, I’ve built 2 of them. Cost creep is just a fact of life. The fact that they were so far off on their original pitch is not surprising for me…everyone I knew was skeptical of the cost when it was announced. But, you get what you pay for, and it looks like they developed a pretty nice plane.

  37. The comments keep saying that the price increase has little or nothing to do with the devastating crashes. Perhaps you should ask how much of that price increase is due to Liability Insurance increases. My guess it probably all or nearly all of it.

  38. The fun nature of the A5 advertised in the marketing video can be a trap. Nothing about this plane changes the laws of aerodynamics, nor the risks associated with flight, nor the need for specific flight instruction tailored to the aircraft. It is not the machine, but a series of circumstances that probably contributed to a lessened sense of caution specifically when it came to flying the A5, and that led to the unfortunate deaths. Hopefully the company can learn and modify things, much like Cirrus did, and put safety, training, and vigilance as the predicates to the inherent fun in flying a machine like the A5 over water. Any new technology creates its traps for the unwary, here the traps are related to ignoring the well-established rules of flight, especially in the risky low-and-slow configuration.

  39. I think that a lot of these comments are missing the point. While the aircraft could be to blame decades of accident statistics would say that pilot error is a MUCH more likely cause. While I would say the aircraft is most likely not at fault I would say ICON may be, for one reason, the training. Looking from the outside in, and making the single assumption that he received training at one of the “ICON Flight Centers” it would appear that the culture within the company or training program at least does not emphasize risk management strongly enough. Flying low and fast is dangerous and should be avoided in normal operations. Similarly maneuvering an aircraft at low level when surrounded by rising terrain, as was the case in the fatal CA accident, is also not on the safe side of the risk/reward curve. It would appear to me that the company needs to take a hard look at the training program that they are running and make some changes that are as aggressive as the maneuvering in their marketing pieces.

  40. The company ads show how fun the aircraft can be flying low to the water – swooping, turning and playing. The airplane is adverstises the fun recreational activity – jet ski that flys. It’s a paradoxical aircraft. Play too much without a level of respect and professionalism and it will kill you. Just like a snake handler, sooner or later, you get bit.

  41. It is highly likely that this accident was pilot error.

    The forgiving aerodynamic design of the wing would temp some pilots to go beyond what normal flying parameters are, in which case the envelop can eventually be pushed too far–not a good situation for relatively inexperienced pilots at low altitudes….

  42. Roy Halladay was one of my sports heroes. I was stunned and full of anguish when I heard this. I will never forgive Icon for encouraging people to short-cut their pilot training. Their promotional videos show the plane flying low over water so this must be okay, right? If you bank sharply you will loose altitude; that’s just physics. No AofA indicator (no matter how over-hyped) will save you from this. I do not know if that is what happened to Roy, but I would not be surprised to hear that did happen.

  43. Another high publicity high profile incident to cast a shadow over GA, probable cause unknown but it doesn’t matter.

  44. (Tim, you beat me to the punch) Low experience rider buys a high performance sport bike, cashes. Low experience driver buys high performance car, cashes. Low time pilot buys a tight performance envelop aircraft….
    All Marketing departments, FYI. Adrenaline doesn’t read the disclosures in fine print. Stop killing your customers. It’s not the vehicle its the operator.

  45. It is highly unusual for an accident to result from one single cause. More frequently, it is the product of a chain of individual facts which, when linked in a particular order, result in the accident: weather; company policy; pilot training: pilot briefing; local situation; pilot awareness etc. Mechanical failure is rare. The pilot is usually the last one in the chain, so it is all to easy to heap all the ‘blame’ on the last link. TJ made the point.

  46. You must admit, the A5 is one heck of a good looking aircraft.
    The problem is that it’s a hot rod with wings.
    In my opinion, for safe piloting of this flying jet ski, it should not be classified as a Sport Aircraft, but be reclassified as a standard GA plane; requiring the full training, both on the ground and flight time through an authorized flight school.
    It will cost the want-to-be pilot a few more dollars and time with the training but they
    will be more familiar with handling the aircraft and it will be well worth the money
    knowing that they have the most up-to-date training the money can buy.

  47. Let’s wait for the facts to come back. Yes, low time and the thrill of flying in ground effect, skimming the water, may have contributed to the crash but let’s not prejudge. Remember Robinson R22’s in the 80’s? Low time pilots, entry level aircraft, used heavily for training, resulted in enough accidents to warrant the issuance of an SFAR. Since the SFAR, much lower rate of accidents. If there is a high accident rate (and I think 2 is certainly not enough) then maybe they will go that route. But how does it compare to the accident rate overall of all other LSA? These are the questions we need to be asking and can only do so when enough are out in the flying population.

  48. On my drive to work in the freeways, I see many motorists driving large SUV’s and Pickup trucks like they are race cars. Are the car manufacturers to blame because how they market them? “Like a Rock”, etc.
    Let’s wait until we get more information before we trash an aircraft and the pilot.

  49. To maximize the psychological rush of zooming just over the waves, the pilot would have to initiate a diving descent, so as to reach Vne (or thereabouts). The problem is knowing when to commence the return to level flight, because altitude will continue to be lost until leveled out. If leveling out is commenced too low, the aircraft is doomed… the wings will separate either from exceeding Vne or from impact with terrain. In this instance, the aircraft likely impacted the water with the control yoke in full aft position, in an aerodynamic stall.

  50. The video footage of the crash, and the eye witness reports, indicate that significantly risky maneuvers were performed, repetitively, by the low time pilot. Many of us would consider this ‘stunt flying’. All PIREPS of the A5 point to it being an extremely forgiving and safe aircraft. Probably a great aircraft for new pilots. However, ICON company has been actively promoting the normalization of flight at 300 (or less) AGL, and promoting this to amateur pilots. Flying at that altitude is not ‘normal’ and should not be encouraged. Any good flight training will teach you that altitude is your friend and lack thereof is increasing your risk. To think that an aircraft company would convince pilots otherwise is scary. It is very sad that this happened, and even more sad that it may have happened because a company — looking for validation, revenue, and without concern for risk of others — may have socialized it’s customers into taking risks that other pilots would never consider. Regardless of the cause of accident, which is not yet determined, the aviation community should ALWAYS be safety first, especially with new pilots.

  51. Interesting to note that highly skilled athletes have no more advantage in flying an aircraft safely than an average John Doe. No disrespect to Roy Halladay, but there are a few sports figures that bit off more than they could chew…aviation-wise. Perhaps they believe that advanced motor skills (they certainly have that) and money give them an advantage when it comes to flying airplanes. Personally, I’d rather fly with a nerdy chess champion with limited motor skills that is respectful of airplanes and flying than someone with advanced motor skills, lots of $$$ and a lax approach to aviation. Boldness and flying do not mix. The cause of this accident is most likely a low time pilot flying too low to the water. Perhaps the NTSB will discover a different outcome as I’m only guessing.

  52. Most accidents seem to have one phrase “Pilot Error” Many pilots get too familiar with an aircraft or terrain and get careless.

  53. Wake up people! Please! Low-level flying in a seaplane??… It is done safely everyday in many, many different aircraft. Seaplanes fly low. And flying low isn’t a problem unless you aren’t paying attention and you hit terrain (or water, which by the way is fairly flat, unlike a canyon). And the Icon A5 is really not unique as they want you to believe. There is literally nothing on that plane that hasn’t been done by someone else. And there are other successful, with much better safety records, even with flying low over water,and even of a similar type as the ICON A5, such as the Searey and the Super Petrel. Just because the almighty Icon Aircraft warns of flying low, doesn’t mean there’s anything to it. Maybe we shouldn’t be flying low in an underpowered, heavy aircraft like the Icon, where performance isn’t there to back you up when you need it – like flying into a “canyon”. Icon is a very new, very inexperienced company, with a very new, fairly untested in the real world, with real pilots. Its also heavy and slow, and they have seemingly dialed back the control surface effectiveness with their “spin resistance”. ICON is not experts at this, or this type of aircraft, but they get away with making people think so simply because they had a HUGE marketing budget that has spanned more than a decade. Want proof – THINK! – why does such an aircraft take years & years to figure out manufacturing, with several price hikes, and need lots of marketing spin, especially when others have already been making such aircraft for years!. This aircraft is NOT UNIQUE, not in the slightest! Others have figured this out, many, many times!!! The Super Petrel flies better, performs better, has a real pilot’s cockpit, and gives you the same experience; and, statistically at least, with a LOT MORE SAFETY – and at a reasonable price (~$150 – $170k). The ICON A5 is nothing special aside from them spending more on marketing than on product development. The Super Petrel and Searey are not new, or inexperienced; they’ve both been around for a couple decades or more (the Super Petrel in use around the world). They are both well tested, well known, and the manufacturers aren’t going around trying to blame low flying for the ineptness of their aircraft. I’m not saying low flying isn’t hazardous. I’m saying ICON is putting that out to distract you from the ineptness of the aircraft. Yes it is inept – just actually look at the specs and compare to other like aircraft. OMG, why does everyone buy this ICON crap! Wake UP! Stop allowing marketing dollars and PR spin to shape your opinion!! THINK!

  54. Clearly we do not have an official diagnosis of the causes of the crash thus some of the comments above are unworthy and either drawn from a lack of disciplined thought or transfer of emotions from other frustrations. Let’s wait for the report. If the investigation concludes pilot error then fault per se should not be attributed to the aeroplane. I am reminded however of the period when high cc sports bikes were developed for the road and many riders were killed. A wise comment was made above – the laws of physics do not ‘bend’.

  55. Being a high time Seaplane pilot, Lake Buccaneer and C-208 caravan on floats. Lots of time flying off of lake Berryessa and around its many canyons and powerlines. It comes down to thrill vs training and adhering to your own personel limits.
    The plane is not at fault, its pilot error or lack of sound, safe judgement. Flying into Canyons near Lake Berryessa or Flying low over any terrain is extremely dangerous. Do Bush pilots and Seaplane pilots fly into those conditions, yes they do. However skill, experience in the aircraft being flown and a familiarity of the area being flown into all account for a positive outcome. LSA pilot cert is minimal at best especially for a Seaplane. Accidents will happen. Training, training, practise under safe conditions and setting your own personel limits. Dont blame the aircraft, the A5 is an awesome plane, its a tragedy that anyone in any aircraft has an accident. We make choices every day some great, some poor, in flying there is little error for poor choices. Thankfully 45 years of bush and seaplane flying has taught be to be conservative. Stay strong and fly long.

  56. Its very sad that three aviation enthusiasts have passed away while doing what they enjoy but to blame this particular aircraft is very short sided. In 2007 I watched a Cessna 172 depart Johnson Creek ID for Big Creek. Unfortunately, he also flew into a canyon and couldn’t get out. Certainly, not the 172s fault. Its one of the safest aircraft ever. I’ve never flown low over water but through personal experience have learned altitude is your friend especially if your lose avionics at night as well as wind sheers and icing of the windscreen on final!

  57. The cause will come out from the video, eyewitness, and data recorder. Stay tuned.

    However, you’d be a fool to buy one of these. Underperformer, already 3 accidents (other issues not being reported on top of that) in the first 22 airplanes, and a company that has taken in $350M or so of funding with no profit margin, even after moving to Mexico and jacking the price up.

    These guys won’t be around too much longer. Unless more Chinese money from their Chinese controlled board may comes in.

  58. There is video out now showing him doing deep dives at very low altitude, and witnesses who say he had be flying like that for several days. Clearly the pilot pushed the limits too far from the video.
    I have followed this plane for some years and admire what they have done with the spin resistant frame and ‘auto like’ cockpit design…I want one.

    BUT, I have always felt, from reading the statements of the CEO, that his concept of bringing new pilots into GA by emphasizing the ‘ability to fly out of a canyon’ and all of the marketing video showing very low level flying over rivers, creeks, lakes, etc WAS A DANGEROUS WAY TO ATTRACT NON-PILOTS.

    The aircraft seems to be excellent for novices, but the fighter pilot CEO built it for his own vision and abilities and used those as marketing buzz. In my opinion the crashes were likely pilot error but those pilots were ‘egged on’ by an irresponsible vision from the CEO.
    They must ‘back off’ the laize Fair marketing approach of low level flying and perhaps, it’s time for a new CEO. After all, the person who develops the company is almost never has the skill set to grow the company to its full potential. This was his ‘thesis’ in grad school after discharge from the Service, he was lucky and determined enough to make it a reality and built a Fine new aircraft to boot. But his vision to get it this far needs to be turned over now to someone more centerist from GA, not a fighter pilot with a dream.

  59. We do not yet know the cause of this accident. The NTSB says it will take 1-2 years to give their report, but I suspect it will be much sooner. The two previous ICON accidents were given their final report in just a few months. So, we don’t know if it was pilot error, has anything to do with how he was flying (which if you watch the videos weren’t all that stuntish, its just that non-aviators and the non-flying media think it is), and flying low doesn’t cause an accident; trying to fly lower than the ground/water does. I fly a Super Petrel LS as well as a Cessna 210. Flying a seaplane, especially a light sport amphib of this type, means you’ll be flying low, and getting used to doing so safely. But the general non-aviation public doesn’t know that. Once I landed in a lake and was just taxiing around when I noticed a motorboat full-bore speeding directly toward us. I really think he thought he had just witnessed a crash in the water and was coming to rescue us. I’m sure he was quite surprised when I took off again before he got there. The general public just doesn’t know, or understand, and their comments are, to be honest, uninformed and thus uninformative for the most part; especially when they express (uninformed) opinions. It’s the NTSB’s opinion I’m waiting for. Roy was not a newbie pilot as some have suggested. He had over 700 hours logged, held a Private license, instrument rating, and I believe I heard he was working on, or wanted to work on his commercial. He was not a sport pilot as some have assumed, including the non-aviation news media. I guess they dug up that you can fly an Icon A5 with just a Sport Pilot’s license and assumed that is what Roy held. We also don’t know if the aircraft was at fault, due to a mechanical or structural failure. We simply don’t know. Usually we aviation people make pretty good guesses ahead of the NTSB and oftentimes get it right, or close, simply because we understand the situation. But this time, I really don’t think there’s enough to go on to make any guesses. I’m waiting for the NTSB’s report.

  60. It’s amazing that after all these comments we learn of Roy’s qualifications. It would appear his experience far exceeds what we were led to believe! Still looks undetermined to me, and he should have been somewhat ‘immune’ to reckless flying advertising. Any seaplane pilot knows that calm water proximity demands strict attention.

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