Single-engine plane crashes at Lafayette Municipal Airport – Macon County Chronicle
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Single-engine plane crashes at Lafayette Municipal Airport – Macon County Chronicle

Single-engine plane crashes at Lafayette Municipal Airport – Macon County Chronicle

By Debbie Gregory

On Sunday afternoon, July 7, a single-engine, experimental Super Drifter seaplane crashed at Lafayette Municipal Airport shortly after 3:00 p.m.

There were two people on the plane, including owner/pilot Roger Richardson and passenger Chris Nickens, both of Hendersonville, Tennessee.

According to Richard Thomas, who operates Sky Chaser Aviation at Lafayette Airport, the pilot was making a touch landing and the gust of wind caught the plane. “That caused the plane to flip over and hit the tarmac hard,” Thomas said. “Richardson was airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and Nickens was taken by ambulance to Sumner Regional Medical Center. When I called Vanderbilt this morning, Richardson was in critical condition.”

According to EMA Director and Deputy Fire Chief Don Stevens, they were called at 3:05 p.m., and the Super Drifter plane had crashed about 25 feet from the fuel tanks. “We were on the scene until almost 5 p.m., and because there were no fatalities, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which oversees Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) investigations, said we could move the plane off the road.”

Macon County Emergency Medical Services, the Macon County Sheriff’s Office, the Lafayette Police Department and the Lafayette Fire Department responded to the scene.