FAA says YouTuber crashed his plane on purpose, revokes pilot's license

April 22 (UPI) -- Federal authorities have suspended a California man's pilot's license after they concluded that he intentionally crashed his small turboprop plane last fall so he could film it and post it online.

The pilot, Trevor Jacob, explained last November that he experienced engine trouble with his single-engine Taylorcraft BL-65 and was forced to abandon the aircraft and parachute to safety.


Jacob filmed the plane, which was a 1940s model, as it went down in the Los Padres National Forest in Southern California. He posted the footage to his YouTube account -- in a video titled, "I crashed my plane" -- about a month later.

This month, the Federal Aviation Administration sent Jacob a letter explaining that they'd concluded that he crashed the plane as an intentional stunt.

"On November 24, 2021, you demonstrated a lack of care, judgment, and responsibility by choosing to jump out of an aircraft solely so you could record the footage of the crash," the FAA wrote in the six-page letter, which informed Jacob that his pilot certification would be revoked.

The agency said its conclusion was based on several factors -- including that Jacob affixed multiple cameras to the plane, including one looking straight at the propeller. Another camera captured his escape.


The FAA also noted that Jacob never attempted to restart the plane's engine, he'd opened the plane's door before the engine stopped, did not make any distress call and fetched all the cameras himself instead of waiting for investigators.

The agency barred Jacob from applying to reinstate his license for a year and said he can be fined more than $1,600 for each day until he surrenders the existing license.

The finished video clip on Jacob's YouTube account has been viewed nearly 2 million times.

Jacob, a former U.S. Olympic snowboarder, rejected the claim that he'd intentionally downed his plane.

"I did not jump out of my plane for views," Jacob told ABC News.

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