Chilling Westchester plane crash audio reveals pilot said, ‘I can’t see a thing up here’

“I cannot see a thing up here,” said the pilot chillingly, as he declared an emergency due to engine trouble — a small plane crashed in Westchester, New York, with the captured dramatic audio capturing the pilot’s frantic final minutes.

On Thursday, the lone-engine Beechcraft A36 collided approximately 1.5 miles away from the Westchester County Airport, resulting in the unfortunate demise of Pilot Boruch Taub and his companion, Benjamin Chafetz.

Around 5 p.M., The pilot notified of engine difficulties as the inhabitants of Cleveland were traveling from JFK Airport to Cuyahoga County Airport in Richmond Heights, Ohio.

The aircraft was moving in a northerly direction and ascending to an altitude of 8,000 feet when the flight conditions started to worsen. This information was obtained from a recording that lasted almost nine minutes and was analyzed by The Post using LiveATC.Net.

“Can we halt our ascent at 6,000?” Inquires the pilot of N19MT departing from New York.

The controller informs him that he would need to climb approximately 10 to 15 miles to reach an altitude of 8,000 feet, but he can temporarily maintain a level flight at 6,000 feet.

Wreckage of the Beechcraft A36
Pilot Boruch Taub declared an emergency after reporting that the single-engine Beechcraft A36 had a broken cylinder and was losing oil pressure.
Yeshiva World News
Location of the crash in Westchester County
The Beechcraft A36 was headed from JFK Airport to the Cuyahoga County Airport in Ohio before it crashed a short distance from Westchester County Airport.
Chopper2/CBS New York

According to data from FlightAware, the plane took 19 minutes to reach an altitude of 6,000 feet.

Taub says, “I can’t understand why it would take so long to climb 8,000 feet in about 200 minutes.” “I’m not certain why we’re not getting the performance we were expecting, I’m just not, right All.”

The pilot in the Lycoming six-cylinder engine identifies the issue as a “non-functioning cylinder” and subsequently informs the controller about the absence of “upward velocity”. The pilot expresses dissatisfaction regarding this matter.

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“So we would like to visit Westchester,” he states.

“Are you stating an emergency?” The controller inquires.

Plane crash victim Binyamin “Ben” Chafetz
Binyamin “Ben” Chafetz, of Beachwood, Ohio, was the passenger killed on the small plane that crashed Thursday night near White Plains, New York.
LinkedIn / Benjamin Chafetz
Chopper 2 is checking out the aftermath of a small plane crash in Westchester County that left two people dead. Read more: https://cbsn.ws/3wjR4uS Watch more coverage on CBS News New York: https://cbsn.ws/3Uycq1M
Wreckage from the Ohio-bound flight that crashed on Jan. 19.
Chopper2/CBS New York

“Not at this moment,” Taub responds, but just moments later adds: “I am declaring a crisis. My oil pressure is decreasing.”

The controller instructs the pilot to “fly at wings level” at 5,000 feet, informing him that the base cloud is at 300 feet, suggesting poor visibility due to rainy conditions.

Taub was authorized for the ILS (Instrument Landing System) on Runway 16, which is 6,549 feet long, at Westchester County Airport.

“I piloted that ILS a few weeks ago,” he remarks.

Shortly after, the crisis became even more urgent.

“Help! Help! Help!” The pilot proclaims.

The controller states, “The airport is just under 2 miles away at 11 o’clock. Approach Runway 16 from the left base for a perfect setup. Make a right turn as you see fit. If you want to start the turn, you can turn left. You are currently behind the airport. Do you understand?”

“You appear stunning as you approach the left starting point for Runway 16,” he adds.

However, the pilot seems to be facing growing challenges.

“If you continue providing me with directions. I cannot see anything out here,” he states.

“The controller, in one of the final transmissions, instructs you to make a left correction towards the runway at your 10 o’clock.”

He adds, unfortunately, “Radar contact lost.”.

Dead pilot Boruch Taub
Boruch Taub, of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, was at the controls of the doomed plane.
Facebook / Boruch Taub

The two individuals, notable members of Cleveland’s tight-knit Orthodox community, were flying back to Ohio after participating in a burial ceremony.

He apparently believed that he was bidding farewell to his wife privately, but before the crash, he managed to send a text message to a WhatsApp group prayer in the temple, shortly before.

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The Jewish Chronicle stated, “Our engines failed. Please contact the community and ask them to recite Tehillim,” which refers to the Hebrew phrase for the Book of Psalms. I deeply apologize for all my actions. I hold immense affection for you and our children.

FOX 8 informed the Bais Avrohom community that according to Rabbi Nissim Abrin, “I believe that his affection, his modesty, and his devotion were evident in those messages. I am confident that neither Ben nor Boruch would ever surrender. I firmly believe that he never relinquished hope even for a moment, as Ben encouraged prayer. Ben certainly seemed to be in a state of distress.”

Map showing the path of the doomed flight
The wreckage was located in woods behind an office park in Armonk, a hamlet in the town of North Castle, about 1.5 miles from Westchester County Airport.

We were hoping for the best and bracing for the worst when we confirmed the news, unfortunately plunging us into shock and grief.

“They were both dedicated spouses, affectionate partners, fathers, and extremely proud of their families,” Abrin added.

Chafetz, who is survived by his wife, Smadar, and seven children in Beachwood, Ohio, owned the web development firm 121eCommerce.

Taub was the owner of Masterworks Automotive & Transmission located in Cleveland Heights.

The crash is currently being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.

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