WASHINGTON, May 1 (UPI) -- The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board ruled that pilot error caused the crash that killed New York Yankees pitcher Cory Lidle and a flight instructor.
However, the federal agency wasn't able to determine which of the men was at the controls when the light plane crashed into a high-rise Manhattan apartment building in October.
"This accident is a great tragedy in which a pleasure flight went horribly wrong and ultimately cost the lives of two young men," NTSB Chairman Mark Rosenker said. "The pilots placed themselves in a precarious situation that could have been prevented by better judgment and planning."
Both Lidle and instructor Tyler Stanger were licensed and certified to fly the Cirrus SR-20, which was owned by Lidle.
Authorities determined that during a flight up the East River, the pilot tried to complete a 180-degree turn and was unable to complete the turn and crashed into the 30th floor of the apartment building. Investigators said if the pilot had started his turn from the east bank of the river, the maneuver would have been safer.