LAS VEGAS -- Norman B. Ivans was behind the controls of a small plane when it crash-landed at the North Las Vegas airport and burst into flames last Wednesday.
It was Déjà vu for Ivans when his twin-engine Piper-Aerostar skidded off the runway and went up in flames at the North Las Vegas airport, the second-busiest airport in the state. The smoke from the accident could be seen from across the city.
The same pilot was involved in a similar accident almost one year ago to the day, when Ivans lost control of the same type of plane while landing it. An NTSB probe into last year's crash found that Ivans swerved across the runway twice while landing, damaging the plane.
Because of the 2012 crash, Ivans was required to fly with an instructor, and was forced to turn in his private pilot's license pending re-examination. Flight instructor Gary Marsh accompanied him on the last week's crash.
In an interview, Marsh described Ivans as a "conscientious" pilot with thousands of hours of flight experience.
The latest crash caused far more damage than the one in 2012, destroying the $400,000 aircraft.
Ivans could not be reached for comment, but local Pilot Jaren Lynn, who has experience flying Piper-Aerostars, says that the planes can be tricky to control.
“I don't know if they lost an engine, I don't know if it was just hard landing, if they stalled,” said Lynn. “I've got a little bit of time in an Aerostar, and they can be a little quirky, you know, in their flight characteristics.”
Despite the plane's damage, Lynn still calls the landing a success because no one was hurt.