Coroner says medical issues not a factor in Routt County plane crash
August 31, 2012
Steamboat Springs — Routt County Coroner Rob Ryg said Friday that an autopsy showed the man found dead in a plane crash Aug. 25 died in the crash and no medical issues were found.
Toxicology tests are being done but results might not be available for two months, Ryg said.
A preliminary accident report provides little additional information about the crash north of Milner that killed the lone occupant, Peter Nicholas Landherr, 36, of Glenwood Springs.
The National Transportation Safety Board report states the plane, a 1963 Piper PA24, crashed for an unknown reason at an unknown time Aug. 24. The wreckage was discovered at about noon Aug. 25 by a sheep herder.
The report states that the pilot was not in contact with air traffic control, no flight plan had been filed and no one reported Landherr or his plane as being missing. Family members have said Landherr was flying to Minnesota where his family lived.
The report states that the plane stopped up right after crashing in the bowl of a valley surrounded by trees and bushes.
"One ground scar, approximately eight inches in depth, was located just forward of the engine," the report states. "There were no other ground scars or points of impact noted."
The plane was recovered and moved to a hangar for further examination.
NTSB investigator Jennifer Rodi has said the plane exhibited signs of vertical crushing from the bottom up and appeared to have a "relatively flat" impact angle. She said the aircraft was not equipped with a black box or voice recorder, but investigators did recover a handheld GPS unit that is being examined.
To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com