by Christine Kim
Sunday, March 14, 2010
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- A man died this weekend in an ultralight plane crash near Eklutna. The Anchorage Police Department hasn't released the victim's name, but the National Transportation Safety Board says he was the owner and pilot of the aircraft.
NTSB officials say it was about 8 a.m. Sunday when a passing Alaska Railroad train spotted the wreck.
"It's not necessarily on the tracks, but on the side of the tracks," said NTSB investigator Clint Johnson. "The train was able to get around it no problem, but right next to the tracks on the right-of-way, about (railroad) Mile 138."
The site is between two railroad posts in Eklutna and Birchwood, and is inaccessible by road. Railroad police confirm the pilot was found dead on the scene.
"It's certified under a experimental category, but it is a 2-seater, N-numbered, ultralight airplane," Johnson said.
APD says a railroad worker flagged down an officer just before 10 a.m., and other agencies responded to the scene. According to the NTSB the 54-year-old man was the only person aboard the aircraft, but what caused the crash is still unknown.