The National Safety Transportation Board has completed its investigation into the fatal airplane crash last month that killed four people from Le Mars and Merrill.
According to the accident investigation report, the NTSB says examination of the plane wreckage at the accident site in a pasture near Guthrie Center, revealed a two-inch long crack in the engines aft exhaust muffler. The inner surface of the muffler heat shroud was coated in sooty tan and grey colored deposits. Similar deposits were also present on the inner surface of the cabin heat hose that ducted air from the shroud to the cabin heat distributer box assembly.
Toxicology testing performed by the Iowa State Medical Examiner’s office revealed elevated levels of carbon monoxide in the blood of all four people in the plane. Killed in that plane crash were 49-year old Ed Anderson, of Le Mars, the pilot. 36-year old Patrick Kellen of Le Mars, 15-year old Samantha Clark of Le Mars, and 28-year old Tyler Douvia of Merrill.
(By Dennis J. Morrice, KLEM, Le Mars)