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Pilot killed in crash after taking selfies in the cockpit

Posted at 11:58 AM, Feb 03, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-03 11:58:56-05

WATKINS, Colo. -- National Transportation Safety Board investigators said a pilot and his passenger taking selfies on board helped contribute to a deadly plane crash in Adams County, Colorado. The NTSB released the report on the crash that killed two people near Front Range Airport on May 31. The report said it was likely a cellphone distracted the pilot before he lost control of the plane and crashed.

The Cessna 150 crashed in a field near East 48th Avenue and Manila Road as it was doing nighttime takeoffs and landings, according to a report on Investigators said they found a GoPro camera nearby and video showed the pilot and his passenger taking selfies at low altitudes, even using the flash.

"Based on the evidence of cellphone use during low-altitude maneuvering, including the flight immediately before the accident flight, it is likely that cellphone use during the accident flight distracted the pilot and contributed to the development of spatial disorientation and subsequent loss of control," the NTSB said.

The pilot and owner of the plane was 29-year-old Amritpal Singh of Aurora. The report also said Singh did not meet the requirements to be flying at night with passengers. The name of the passenger was never released.