(FeaturedNews.com) – Former Olympic snowboarder and YouTuber, Trevor Jacob, crashed his plane into a hillside in California in November 2021. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), this was a deliberate stunt. The agency revoked his pilot’s license as a result, but Jacob disputes the findings.
Shortly after the crash, Jacob posted a 13-minute video on his YouTube channel. It showed him leaving the Taylorcraft BL64 by parachute as the plane slammed into the hillside. The video received over 1.7 million views.
Jacob claims the aircraft had engine trouble, and he had to abandon it because there was no safe area to land. He said the flight was to spread the ashes of his friend Johnny Strange, who died BASE jumping in 2015.
The video shows the propeller stopping and Jacob jumping out while holding a selfie stick with an attached camera. He also showed his trek through forest areas as he looked for help, which he eventually found about six hours later, when he came upon a farmer.
The investigation began after he posted the video online because viewers expressed doubt about its authenticity. They called it a planned stunt because he had worn the parachute, which they said was proof he had prepared to crash the plane.
The FAA Findings
After reviewing the video, the FAA sent its findings to the YouTuber in a letter on April 11, according to The New York Times. The letter said he was careless and reckless in his operation of the aircraft. The FAA deduced he’d put lives in danger and damaged property due to the act and stated he had violated FAA regulations.
The agency cited the wearing of the parachute, the opening of the door before any indications of trouble, and failure to try to seek help before leaving the plane as evidence. The agency also pointed out there were indeed plenty of safe landing spots within the immediate area.
The New York Times reached out to Jacob for his response to the letter, but he claimed to know nothing about it. He asked the publication where it had received the information, but he then failed to respond to follow-up inquiries.
He addressed the incident on the “Trevor Jacob Adventured Podcast #1” on his YouTube channel, saying only that his attorney advised him not to say anything and the truth would eventually come out.
The FAA cannot prosecute him because it doesn’t have that power. The agency has done about all it can. The letter did tell Jacob that if he failed to turn in his license, he could face fines and additional legal action.
The inspector general’s office that oversees the FAA at the Department of Transportation told The New York Times it would not comment on whether or not the agency was pursuing any further investigation into the incident.
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