ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A preliminary National Transportation Safety Board report on a July 10 plane crash on a lake in Homer,which killed former state lawmaker Cheryll Heinze, says the pilot's estimates of wind speeds at the time were lower than those recorded at the local airport.
The Cessna 206 floatplane that crashed was carrying five Matanuska Electric Association employees including Heinze, the co-op’s director of human resources and public relations, on a fishing trip. MEA general manager Evan “Joe” Griffith, 71, was at the controls when the plane flipped after landing on Beluga Lake.
According to the NTSB report, the flight originated from Anchorage’s Sixmile Seaplane Base. Griffith, who spoke with Channel 2 about the crash Monday, told investigators that the Cessna had no mechanical issues prior to the accident. It had just landed on Beluga Lake after a dinner stop in Kenai when a gust of wind caused the plane to flip.