Passenger Jumps from Plane — (NTSB)

SSRI Ed note: Woman on multiple medications charters a plane then commits suicide by jumping out during flight.

To view original article click here

December 03, 1994

To view National Transportation Safety Board Accident Report click here

NTSB Identification: MIA95LA032

The docket is stored in the Docket Management System (DMS). Please contact Records Management Division Accident occurred Saturday, December 03, 1994 in MIAMI, FL Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/31/1995 Aircraft: CESSNA 172D, registration: N707PP Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Uninjured. On December 3, 1994, about 1246 eastern standard time, a Cessna 172D, N707PP, registered to Hodelin F. Rene, operating as a 14 CFR Part 91 aerial photography flight, reported to FAA air traffic control while in cruise flight, that his female passenger jumped out of the airplane in the vicinity of Miami, Florida.

The passenger was not located and is presumed to be fatally injured. The airplane was not damaged. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Opa Locka Airport, Opa Locka, Florida, about 1 hour 6 minutes before the accident. Charles J. Flowers, President of Flowers Air Charter, Opa Locka, Florida, stated his office was contacted on three separate occasions in November 1994, by Christine M. Pascale, who asked to rent an airplane with a pilot to take some aerial photographs.

Mr. Flowers stated he was unable to support her request, and he contacted a private owner, Hodelin F.Rene, who agreed to make the flight. The pilot, Hodelin F. Rene, stated he arrived at Flowers Air Charter, on December 3, 1994, at about 1000, and was introduced to his passenger by Mr. Flowers. Miss Pascale stated she wanted to take several pictures of a couple of houses in the Cutler Ridge area, and drew a circle around the area on an aeronautical chart.

He went to Terminal One, taxied his airplane to Flowers Air Charter, and did a preflight inspection. The passenger did her own preflight inspection, and asked several questions about the operations of the right passenger door. They departed Opa Locka Airport and flew to the area previously marked on the map. He leveled off at 5,000 feet agl, slowed the airplane to 70 mph, and asked her where she wanted to go. She stated she would look outside to make sure. A short time later, she stated she was going to take off the headset and move the seat back so she could get a good shot. He then heard what sounded like a yell, felt wind and noise simultaneously in the cabin area. He looked towards the sound, she was already partly out of the airplane, and when their eyes met, she jumped out. “I was in total amazement, shock and just froze for a moment, not knowing what to do. I could not believe what had happened.

After about ten seconds, I called ATC and requested a descent as I struggled to close the door.” He then informed ATC that he would like to declare an emergency, that his passenger had jumped out of the airplane. Review of communications on December 3, 1994, for the time period between 1640 UTC (1140 EST) to 1807 UTC (1307 EST) between Miami ATCT, Fort Lauderdale South Arrival/Departure Radar, Arrival/Departure Interphone, South Departure Radar, Opa Locka ATC Tower, and N707PP indicate the airplane departed Opa Locka Airport, landed at Opa Locka Airport without any intermediate stops and confirmed ATC statements made by the pilot. Mr. Thomas D. Manning, Skydive, Inc., Homestead, Florida, wrote a letter to the NTSB on December 4, 1994, stating that Christine M.Pascale attempted to jump out of his airplane on November 29, 1994, while on an aerial photography flight in the vicinity of Burger King Headquarters, on Old Cutler Road in Miami, Florida. After landing at the Homestead General Aviation Airport, Homestead, Florida, a confrontation ensued, and the Metro Dade Police Department was called.

Mr. Manning informed the two police officers who responded to the call that he thought Miss Pascale was trying to commit suicide. Review of airman records on file with the FAA Airmen Certification Branch, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, revealed the passenger, Christine M. Pascale, was issued private pilot certificate No. 85526189, on October 22, 1990, with ratings for airplane single engine land. The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, issued an emergency order of revocation of any airman pilot certificate or airman medical certificate held by the passenger on August 12, 1991. The airman and medical certificates were revoked for falsification of airman medical application dated March 23, 1990, October 27, 1990, and general medical condition. She failed to disclose that she had a history of the following: a. Seizures b. Personality disorder c. Uncontrolled hypertension d. Myasthenia gravis e. Asthma f. Stroke g. Steroid dependency h. Multiple allergies i. Cerebral hemorrhage secondary to ruptured aneurism j. Taking numerous prescribed medications