Alaska Pilot’s Blood Alcohol Was 5 Times Over Limit, Report Shows

The National Transportation Safety Board confirmed an Alaska airplane pilot involved in a fatal crash had a blood-alcohol level more than five times above the legal limit for pilots to fly.

The final NTSB crash report said pilot Charles Weimer was flying under the influence when he failed to maintain a safe distance from Goat Mountain in August 2019, KTUU-TV reported Saturday.

“We had some indicators that maybe this was going to be the case,” said Clint Johnson, National Transportation Safety Board Alaska office chief. “But until we got that toxicology report back anything could be the case.”

Weimer, 31, and three others died in the crash near Girdwood, a ski town in the municipality of Anchorage.

The airplane’s owner, Karl Erickson, 55, and David Osborn, 60, both of Girdwood, and Paul Wiley, 37, of Superior, Arizona, were also killed.

The Piper PA-22-150 aircraft left Girdwood at about 4:15 p.m. and crashed 15 minutes later in steep terrain on the mountain, investigators said.

A witness saw the plane performing aggressive maneuvers before the crash, the NTSB report said.

“I think that everyone would agree that this an avoidable accident, no doubt about that,” Johnson said.