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FINAL NAVY REPORT IN ON BLUE ANGEL JET CRASH

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The Navy has completed its’ investigation into the crash of a Blue Angel jet in Smyrna on June 2nd and it contains information that is unsettling. The report cites several oversights in protocol having to do with the ship’s recording systems and errors made by the ground crew and pilot. Capt. Jeff Kuss was killed in the crash and was described as being “a meticulous and professional pilot.” However the day of the crash, investigators discovered that he had not signed a sheet for the jet before the flight and failed to turn on his transponder. It was discovered that Kuss made several mistakes that day that were out-of-character for him, including moving too low and too fast in a transition from a climb to a split S maneuver. The aircraft did have a type of black box, but it did not record anything. According to the report, the 32-year-old captain tried to eject from the plane but it was too late and flying too low to the ground. Kuss died from blunt force trauma, more than likely being struck from the trees or aircraft debris. The report recommends a number of changes to the flight demonstration program as well as an assessment of the split-S maneuver since two of three wrecks in the last 12 years have happened while performing that move.

 

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