FILE – In this Jan. 27, 2020, file photo, provided by the National Transportation Safety Board, NTSB investigators Adam Huray, right, and Carol Hogan examine wreckage as part of the NTSB’s investigation of a helicopter crash near Calabasas, Calif. Federal safety officials are expected to vote Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021, on what likely caused the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter and seven others to crash into a Southern California hillside last year, killing all aboard. (James Anderson/National Transportation Safety Board via AP, File)
An investigation into the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant shows the pilot was disoriented in cloudy conditions.
Investigator Bill English says the investigation also found the pilot didn’t follow his training and was under self-induced pressure to complete the flight.
The National Transportation Safety Board met today to release their findings.
English recommended aircraft carry a flight data recorder and a safety management system and that pilots receive spatial disorientation training.
The Los Angeles Lakers star, his daughter Gianna, and others on board had been flying to a youth basketball tournament in Ventura County on January 26th of last year when it went down in the Calabasas hills.
Michael Graham of the National Transportation Safety Board says by doing so, pilot Ara Zobayan lost sight of any spatial reference and that’s why he got disoriented. The findings of their report show by continuing his flight path into heavy clouds, he didn’t follow his training. And there’s a history of pilots dying for the same reason.
Listen to my Full Rigor Podcast: Episode 78: JFK Jr, Kobe and Karen, Lost in the Fog
Small aircraft and fog don’t mix. Poor visibility played a role in the fatal crashes of John F. Kennedy Jr, Kobe Bryant. And Karen has lived to tell about her near death experience in the fog as a helicopter reporter in Sky 6. She also details the tragic crash of Sky 6 and death of another fellow reporter who went down with the fiery wreckage.