Family sues after plane crash
Two families filed a lawsuit two months after a New Year’s Eve plane crash killed four Iowans flying out of Pella.
The families of a brother and sister who were on board are suing the estate of the pilot.
The suit, filed late Wednesday afternoon Marion County District Court, claims that the pilot, 34-year-old Curt Terpstra, was not qualified to be flying in stormy weather and should have never left the ground.
The small single-engine Piper left Pella for Nashville but made a stop in Missouri and slammed into the ground in southern Illinois. All four people on board were killed: Krista Green, 37, siblings Jordan Linder, 35 and Jasmine Linder, 26, and the pilot.
Attorney George LaMarca filed suit on behalf of the Linder families, claiming that Terpstra was not instrument certified and should not have been flying in bad weather at night.
KCCI obtained a copy of the National Transportation Safety Board Accident report showing that Terpstra had not flown for months. His last recorded entry was dated July July 24-26, 2016.
The logbook showed that the pilot had logged only 18.9 hours of night flight time and no flight time in instrument conditions.
“Marginal visual meteorological conditions were reported near the accident site with overcast clouds at 700 feet,” the accident report says.
A source and Terpstra never filed a flight plan and did not have an official FAA weather briefing before taking off.
The manager of the Pella Airport was contacted on Wednesday, but he had no comment.