News Plane Crashes — 30 July 2017

Update: Officials have identified the woman who died on Thursday in the seaplane crash on Lake Winnebago.

The Winnebago County Sheriff’s office says 71-year-old Diane M. Linker of Sauk Rapids Minnesota died in the crash.

The Associated Press reports Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Kroncke said that another person remains in critical condition.

Authorities say three people from Minnesota were on the Lake Renegade seaplane, leaving to return to Minnesota. Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office responded to the incident at 7:45 p.m. on Thursday.

Witnesses tell Action 2 News the plane was taking off but barely left the water when it tipped over near seaplane base. Winnebago County Sheriff’s Lt. David Roth said the water was choppy and the plane was possibly taken over by a bigger wave and ended up flipping over.

Two people were trapped on the plane. The third was able to get out when the door opened in the crash. Two suffered critical injuries; the third person’s injuries are described as “not life-threatening.”

One of the first responders — a diver, we’re told — suffered a cut to the hand and a burn from fuel in the water.

The sheriff’s office estimate the plane was going about 70 knots (80 miles per hour) when it crashed.

Photos during the rescue show the plane almost completely submerged. Authorities say the plane will remain in the water until Friday morning.

EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski said the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration are investigating the crash.

He also said flights are still going in and out of the seabase and no delays due to the crash. Knapinski said the last incident on the lake in relation to the EAA AirVenture was July 2011, when a plane traveling from event had engine issues over the lake and ended up crashing into Lake Winnebago. It killed the two people on board.

Police have blocked off the road to the seaplane base, which is off Highway 45 south of Wittman Regional Airport. The base is used by pilots attending EAA AirVenture.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Oshkosh Fire Department and people from the seaplane base assisted.

NTSB is doing a water investigation. They will be pulling the plane out of the water when they are done and take it toa secure hangar to continue investigating.

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Other news:
Authorities have released the name of a 71-year-old Minnesota woman who died after a seaplane tried to take off near an aviation convention in eastern Wisconsin.

The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office identified the victim as Diane Linker, of Sauk Rapids.

Linker was a passenger in a six-seat seaplane that hit a large wave and overturned while trying to take off Thursday night near the Experimental Aircraft Association’s Seaplane Base, just south of Oshkosh. She died Friday.

Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Kroncke (KRON’-kee) said Saturday that another person remains in critical condition.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Dan Baker says the water was too rough Friday to remove the seaplane. Crews plan to try again Saturday.

The weeklong event attracts 550,000 people from more than 80 countries to Wittman Regional Airport.

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