The National Transportation Safety Board released a new report on Wednesday indicating Ara Zobayan could have been disoriented by low visibility in fog on Jan. 26, the day he was piloting a helicopter that crashed while flying Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and six other people.
According to The Associated Press, they indicated Zobayan said he was climbing while he was actually descending at a specific moment. The report does not indicate the final cause of the crash, though.
“Calculated apparent angles at this time show that the pilot could have misperceived both pitch and roll angles,” one report stated. “During the final descent the pilot, responding to (air traffic control), stated that they were ‘climbing to four thousand.’”
Zobayan took off from John Wayne Airport in Orange County at 9:06 a.m. with the eight passengers he had flown the day before to the same destination: a girls basketball tournament at the retired Lakers star’s Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks.
When the helicopter hadn’t landed within an hour, an executive of the company that operated the aircraft began a frantic search for it on tracking software and had another company chopper dispatched to look for it.
“The weird thing, though, is that the tracker had stopped at 9:45 a.m. which is not normal and we were trying to reach Ara over the radio,” noted Whitney Bagge, vice president of Island Express Helicopters. “I kept refreshing the tracker praying that it was just broken.”
We still have to wait before getting a final conclusion of this fatal accident. Everybody is trying to get an answer that will come later. Kobe's death has been a huge hit for everybody, whether you were or not a fan of him. Nine people were stolen from their time on this planet and now we all want to know what really happened.