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NTSB: Roy Halladay's plane maneuvered at low altitude before crash

By
Daniel Uria
An investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board said witnesses reported seeing Roy Halladay's plane flying at low altitudes before the plane crash that killed the former MLB star on Tuesday. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
An investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board said witnesses reported seeing Roy Halladay's plane flying at low altitudes before the plane crash that killed the former MLB star on Tuesday. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 8 (UPI) -- Witnesses reported Roy Halladay's plane was flying at low altitude prior to the crash that killed the former MLB star, a federal crash investigator said Wednesday.

Noreen Price, the National Transportation Safety Board investigator in charge of the case, said witnesses reported seeing Halladay's ICON A5 light sport amphibious plane flying low before it crashed off the coast of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico at around noon on Tuesday.

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"Generally, a lot of witnesses have said that the plane was maneuvering at low altitude," she said.

Price also said she had not seen video published by TMZ which appears to show the aircraft performing a series of low dives and other maneuvers before the crash. She called for the person who captured the footage to present it directly to the board.

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"I encourage that person to reach out to us and directly give us that data, I'm sure it would help the investigation, she said.

Price said the plane was found upside down in 4 feet of water facing south after what appeared to be a high-energy impact.

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"It looked like a high-energy impact, but all the pieces were there," she said.

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She added it may take one or two years for the NTSB to complete its final federal report.

Halladay was a certified private pilot since 2013, the same year he retired from baseball following a career that included two Cy Young Awards. He had recorded about 700 flight hours in his log book.

Two data recorders from the plane were recovered at the scene and likely would've recorded GPS location, performance, air speed and altitude, among other data, Price said.

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She added no voice recorder was found and it appeared that no mayday call was made.

Halladay was the only passenger in the two-person aircraft, which was a 2018 model given to Haladay by ICON.

ICON released a statement offering condolences to Halladay's family and offering to support the investigation.

"We were devastated to learn that former MLB pitcher Roy Halladay died today in an accident involving an ICON A5 in the Gulf of Mexico," the company said. "We have gotten to know Roy and his family in recent months, and he was a great advocate and friend of ours."

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