NTSB: Pilot Had Control Problem Before Virginia Crash

April 5, 2010

A federal investigator says the pilot of a single-engine plane that crashed at Roanoke Regional Airport had reported a control problem before clipping wires and hitting a UPS Freight building.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Jill Demko says pilot Peter Sheeran was trying to return to the airport when the 1985 Piper PA-46 went down Tuesday and caught fire.

Demko heads a team from the NTSB, Federal Aviation Administration, Piper Aircraft and Teledyne Continental Motors that arrived Wednesday.

Sheeran died Tuesday at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. Passenger John Whitmer was listed in serious condition.

Demko says the men had flown to Roanoke from Charlottesville earlier Tuesday and were returning when the crash occurred.

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