Chalfont flight instructor, Philadelphia plane owner identified as victims of Hilltown plane accident

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A 74-year-old flight instructor from Chalfont and a 55-year-old Philadelphia man have been identified as the victims of Thursday evening's fatal plane crash in Hilltown.

Bucks County Coroner confirmed on Saturday that Alfred George Piranian, of Chalfont, and Brian Filippini, the owner of the 1965 Beechcraft 35-C33, both died of multiple blunt injuries in the crash. The deaths have been ruled accidental.

The plane crashed shortly before 5 p.m. in a Hilltown neighborhood not far from a middle school. No one on the ground was injured, but a pickup truck and nearby home were damaged by debris and fire.

Officers stand near the remains of a single-engine plane that crashed in a Hilltown neighborhood on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. Two people in the plane were killed.
Officers stand near the remains of a single-engine plane that crashed in a Hilltown neighborhood on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. Two people in the plane were killed.

This news organization was unsuccessful Saturday in immediately reaching a National Traffic Safety Board spokesperson for an investigation update.

On Friday, the NTSB confirmed the single-engine plane was on an instructional flight; Buck said Saturday that Filippini had a private pilot's license, and was training for a commercial one under Piranian's instruction.

Alfred Piranian
Alfred Piranian

Online searches found Piranian listed as a flight instructor in single and multi-engine airplanes. He is listed as a member of the National Association of Flight Instructors, Aircraft owners and Pilots Association and Experimental Aircraft Association.

The website GLEIM Aviation lists Piranian as a flight instructor in Doylestown, Perkasie, Quakertown, and Blue Bell, Montgomery County.

The plane took off from Wings Field Airport, a general aviation airport in Blue Bell, at 4:13 p.m. Thursday and landed at the Doylestown Airport nine minutes later, according to FlightAware.com, a flight tracking website.

At 4:26 p.m. the plane departed Doylestown headed to Gunden Airport, a privately owned airport outside of Sellersville, according to the website. The FAA confirmed in a statement the plane took off from Doylestown headed to Gunden.

This doorbell camera video, provided by Hilltown resident Monica Rush, shows the chaotic moments after a plane crashed in her neighborhood Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.
This doorbell camera video, provided by Hilltown resident Monica Rush, shows the chaotic moments after a plane crashed in her neighborhood Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.

More on Thursday's crash: NTSB investigating Hilltown plane crash that killed two, including plane owner

What Hilltown neighbors saw Thursday: 'It was like nothing I've ever seen': Hilltown residents recall plane crash that killed two

Doorbell video cameras captured the fiery crash at Brittany and Victoria lanes in the development of single family homes.

In the raw video posted on social media, the sound of an engine sputtering can be heard seconds before the plane dropped out of the sky and exploded, sending thick black smoke cloud over the neighborhood.

On Friday morning, the scorched remains of the plane remained on the corner, underneath a charred street sign and surrounded by caution tape and a barrier meant to contain any fuel spill.

The NTSB is investigating a single-engine plane crash that occurred in a Hilltown neighborhood on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.
The NTSB is investigating a single-engine plane crash that occurred in a Hilltown neighborhood on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.

NTSB investigators are collecting information from the crash site including what is left of the aircraft. Investigators will also gather radar data, weather information, aircraft control communications, maintenance records and pilot medical records. They will speak to witnesses and review raw video posted on social media.

A preliminary accident report should be available next month, but it will not include a cause, which is part of the final report, which typically takes 12 to 24 months to complete.

According to FlightAware.com, the plane was last flown on Sunday, where it took off from Wings Field shortly before 10:30 a.m. and returned to the airport about 90 minutes later. Records show that Filippini purchased the aircraft in January 2019.

Thursday's crash is the second fatal one involving a small plane in less than a year in the county. In June, a 79-year-old pilot from Upper Black Eddy crashed his single-engine Vans RV-6A in woods south of the Doylestown Airport.

More: 'Second to none': Friends, family remember pilot who died in Buckingham plane crash in June.

No structures or buildings were struck and no one on the ground was injured in that crash. The earlier crash remains under investigation, a process that can take 12 to 24 months.

This article originally appeared on Bucks County Courier Times: Hilltown plane crash victims identified; one is a Bucks County resident