Tampere Airport plane crashed “almost vertically” say investigators

Accident investigators have obtained a video of the crash which they are studying in detail.

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File picture showing exterior of Tampere Airport / Credit: Finavia

The Accident Investigation Board Otkes says it has launched an investigation into a fatal crash at Tampere Pirkkala Airport.

The incident happened on Wednesday evening around 21:00 when a two-seater light plane crashed a few seconds after taking off.

Police say the pilot was a local man in his 50s, and he’s believed to have been leaning how to fly, but hadn’t yet got his full license.

“The solo student pilot was taking on from Tampere Piraklala and right after take off it started turning left while climbing and the turn came steeper and steeper and it made a 350 circle, and the top height was about 30, 40 metres” explains Ismo Aaltonen, Chief Air Safety Investigator at Otkes.

“Probably it was a stall or something and it came down almost vertically, onto the grass next to the runway. The flight time was maybe 30 seconds, that’s my guess” he tells News Now Finland.

Investigators have obtained video of the short flight and crash, but under EU regulations all the material they collect is confidential during the investigation phase.

“At the moment I have my team at the airport collecting material and interviewing people and in a few days we will have much more” says Aaltonen.

The incident is thought to be the first fatal crash involving a flight student since the 2010s.