Thursday, July 05, 2007

Fatal Cessna Caravan crash in Galway, western Ireland

A Cessna Caravan has crashed in western Ireland at about 2:45PM local time, after reportedly "missing the runway" at Aerphort na Minna in Connemara in County Galway. The airport is on the Atlantic coast, about 25 km west of the city of Galway. According to the BBC, local authorities at the scene have confirmed that two of the people who were on board have died. At least two others are reported to be in serious condition at Galway Regional Hospital.

The single engine aircraft, a Cessna 208D registered in the United States, reportedly had eight passengers and one pilot on board, and was making a return trip from Inishmaan, an island off the Galway coast. The Irish Times is reporting that the cockpit of the aircraft was completely destroyed by the impact, and that a number of people had to be cut from the wreckage by rescuers. Nevertheless, three people were reported to have been able walk away from the crash.

An article about the Galway crash, published by the International Herald Tribune, notes that "Ireland's weather forecasters, Met Eireann, said winds were gusting up to 70kph (45mph) Thursday."

The airport was closed immediately after the accident. Crash investigators from the Air Accident Investigative Unit of the Department of Transport have arrived at the scene.

Here is a link to a photo of the intact aircraft taken in January of 2006 and posted on

UPDATE July 6, 2007: Authorities in Ireland have released the names of the two who perished in the Caravan crash yesterday. They are Matthew Masterson of Dublin, who was the pilot, and Paul McNamee of County Galway, who was a passenger. Condolences to their families and friends.

[Photo Source]