Former White House Official Died When Jet Pitched Violently Upward and Downward During Flight: NTSB
The NTSB's report details that the movement occurred after pilots responded to automated cockpit warnings and switched off the system meant to keep the private aircraft stable
The National Transportation Safety Board says in a preliminary report that a former staffer of both the Clinton and Obama administrations died in a private jet after pilots switched off an aircraft stabilizing system while in flight, causing the aircraft to pitch violently.
Dana J. Hyde, a prominent attorney and former White House staffer, was named by Connecticut State Troopers as the passenger who died on the private flight earlier this month. She was 55.
Hyde was one of five people who were aboard the jet that was shaken March 3 while traveling from Keene, New Hampshire, to Leesburg, Virginia, said Sarah Sulick, a spokesperson for the National Transportation Safety Board, per the Associated Press.
Initial reports suggested it was turbulence that caused the Bombardier Challenger 300 airplane to jolt upward, but the NTSB's report details that the movement occurred after pilots responded to automated cockpit warnings and switched off the system that helps keep the aircraft stable.
Related:Former White House Official Dies of Injuries Following Jet Turbulence
It is unclear if Hyde was seated or moving within the cabin when the incident occurred, but the NTSB reports that "as soon as the switch position was moved, the airplane abruptly pitched up."
The Associated Press reports that the ensuing movement of the aircraft subjected the passengers "to forces about four times the force of gravity."
Per the NTSB report, the pilot in control of the aircraft "immediately with both hands regained control of the airplane in what he estimated to be a few seconds after the airplane's pitch oscillated up and down."
According to the AP, Hyde's husband and their son, along with the pilot and co-pilot, were not injured in the incident.
The AP further notes that the FAA issued a directive about Bombardier Challenger 300 jets last year, "after multiple instances in which the horizontal stabilizer on the aircrafts caused the nose of the plane to turn down after the pilot tried to make the aircraft climb."
According to Hyde's personal bio, she worked as chief executive officer of the Millennium Challenge Corporation, associate director at the White House Office of Management and Budget, and senior adviser to the deputy secretary of state under President Barack Obama.
She also served as counsel to the 9/11 Commission and as special assistant to the deputy attorney general in President Bill Clinton's administration.
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Meanwhile, both the National Transportation Safety Board and FBI are continuing to investigate the incident, and will analyze information from the flight data recorder, cockpit voice recorder and other sources of information such as weather data.
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