Aviation Instructor Reacts to Crash

In light of Friday's single-engine plane crash into Lake Michigan, we talked with an aviation instructor at Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City. In the hangar – a Cessna that's smaller, but similar to the one that crashed. Aviation Director Aaron Cook says he doesn't want to speculate on what caused the crash, but says it's possible even in summer months that high altitudes could cause parts of the plane's carburetor to freeze up, and that could cause an engine to fail. Cook also says pilots of single-engine aircraft generally take extra precautions before traveling over water – especially bodies of water as large as one of the Great Lakes. Cook says “the ability to carry a life raft in an aircraft is always possible, and the ability to have life jackets. And certainly if you were to have a problem, to have those options out there – to get to an area where you can reach land or reach a boat or anything that can make people closer to you should they need to assist you.” Once they learn the details of Friday's crash, NMC instructors may use the investigation as a teaching tool with the aviation students.