Airline owner disputes NTSB findings into deadly crash off Molokai

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The owner of Makani Kai Air is disputing some of the findings from an investigation into a plane crash off Molokai that killed state health director Loretta Fuddy in 2013.

The National Transportation Safety Board released a report that said Fuddy was wearing an infant life vest.

Makani Kai Air owner Richard Schuman said there were enough life vests for all eight adult passengers on board, but there were additional children’s vests in the back of the plane.

According to an autopsy report, Fuddy died from acute cardiac arrhythmia, or an irregular heartbeat, due to hyperventilation after exiting the plane.

The NTSB report also said some passengers claimed pilot Clyde Kawasaki did not give a pre-flight safety briefing, but Schuman says he did, and it’s possible the passengers simply didn’t remember it.

“If it didn’t happen, then all these people did exactly as they were trained and instructed to do, so I’m not sure as to how you would want to interpret that,” he said.

“You believe (Kawasaki) gave the pre-flight briefing?” KHON2 asked.

“I believe he gave that, yes sir,” Schuman said.

The report says Kawasaki ditched the Cessna off Kalapaupa after hearing a loud bang, followed by a loss of engine power approximately two minutes into the flight.

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