NTSB reports show banner plane involved in Myrtle Beach crash has history of accidents

Published: Aug. 1, 2023 at 4:37 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 1, 2023 at 6:08 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – The FAA released its preliminary report after a banner plane crashed into the ocean in Myrtle Beach.

It doesn’t provide any major insight into why the plane went down Monday afternoon near 40th Avenue North, only stating that the plane crashed into the water for unknown reasons while it was maneuvering in the flight phase.

RELATED COVERAGE | Pilot hurt after banner plane crashes into ocean in Myrtle Beach, police say

The only person on board was the pilot who was able to safely get out of the plane and was helped by witnesses on the beach.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will work together to gather information on the crash and investigate.


We looked into the small plane’s history and found it’s not the first time the NTSB has investigated the aircraft with tail number N3036M

In July 1995, the small plane went into a ditch at an airport in North Myrtle Beach. The report shows that the plane had been started, but the pilot got out of the plane to change hooks from the banner and the throttle was not in an idle position. The report shows the plane taxied away from the pilot and went into a ditch.

There were no injuries, but the plane suffered “substantial damage.”

Then in April 2009, a report shows the pilot lost control of the plane during a landing in Georgetown and left the runway. The NTSB determined the accident was the pilot’s failure to maintain directional control. The report shows the contributing factors were the pilot’s lack of experience with the make and model of the plane.

No one was hurt in the crash, but the plane’s left landing gear collapsed and the left wing was bent upward.

WMBF News reached out to the FAA regarding the plane’s history. The FAA stated that a plane involved in an accident can be safely flown again provided that any damage is properly repaired.

“The FAA investigates all accidents and bases our follow-up actions on the evidence. Speaking generally, we often increase our oversight of companies that experience multiple accidents or incidents in a certain period of time,” the FAA said in a statement.

The agency added that banner-towing companies require an FAA sign-off, known as a Certificate of Waiver, and that no pilot can tow a banner without having a sign-off from the FAA.

WMBF News has called and stopped by Barnstormers Aerial Advertising which owns the plane, but no one has provided us with a comment on the crash or the plane’s history.


We had viewers reach out concerned about the regulations surrounding banner planes and flying so close to the shores up and down the Grand Strand.

Myrtle Beach City Councilman Gregg Smith said banner planes are out of the city council’s control.

“There’s always going to be people that think banner planes should be banned, but that’s not something we can do at the city level, that’s something that happens with the FAA,” Smith explained.

Smith said in regard to airspace, that is the FAA’s jurisdiction.