NTSB: Preliminary report cites engine issues caused fatal plane crash in Westchester County

The single-engine plane crash occurred shortly after takeoff from John F. Kennedy International Airport on Jan. 19, killing pilot Boruch Taub and passenger Ben Chafetz.

News 12 Staff

Feb 4, 2023, 9:14 PM

Updated 498 days ago

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The National Transportation Safety Board has released a preliminary report on last month’s fatal plane crash in Westchester.  
The single-engine plane crash occurred shortly after takeoff from John F. Kennedy International Airport on Jan. 19, killing pilot Boruch Taub and passenger Ben Chafetz.   
According to the report, the plane took off shortly after 5 p.m. At around 5:16 p.m., Taub informed an air traffic controller at Westchester County Airport that the plane was experiencing poor flight performance. Two minutes later, he reported a dead cylinder and asked permission to proceed to Westchester County Airport.  
A minute after being told that the runway was already in use, Taub was asked by a controller if he was declaring emergency, but said he was not.  
By 5:21, he officially declared emergency and said he was dropping oil pressure. At 5:25 p.m., Taub broadcast, "Mayday!" and was cleared to land. At that point he was only a mile and a half away from the Westchester County airport.  
Less than a minute later, the controller reported that radar contact with the plane was lost. According to the report, upon finding the plane, fresh oil was seen on the bottom of the fuselage, beginning where the wings attached and extending to the tail cone. 
The report adds that examination of the engine revealed a hole in the top of the crankcase in-line with the No. 6 six cylinder position.  
NTSB has also stated that it will take at least a year before they issue their final report.  


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