Report suggests pilot’s disorientation likely caused High Point plane crash

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HIGH POINT, N.C. — A recent report from the National Transportation Safety Board confirms a 2011 plane crash in High Point was caused after the pilot became “disoriented” in foggy conditions and attempted to make an emergency landing at Piedmont Triad International Airport, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

It took the NTSB nearly two years to issue a probable cause for the crash. Witnesses initially said the plane hit the top of trees, exploded, clipped a house and crashed into another house.

On March 30, 2011, the pilot, Marcia Salmons-Keaton, 50, of Wake County, and a passenger, Dr. Thomas Littlejohn, 62, of Winston-Salem, died in the crash.

The Hawker Beechcraft BE58 crashed around into an occupied house in the Frazier Woods subdivision in northern High Point.

The family inside the home was not harmed.

Dennis Diaz, the agency’s air safety investigator in Ashburn, Va., said the report took time to complete.

“It’s not a simple report. There were a lot facets involved,” Diaz said. “I allowed the facts to drive the investigation. That is why it took the time it did.”

Flight records show that the plane took off from Wilmington at 4:23 p.m. with a scheduled arrival in Winston-Salem at 5:20 p.m. Littlejohn’s family said he had flown to Wilmington because his clinical research company has an office there.

Read more: Winston-Salem Journal