OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
A leading Washington, D.C., lawyer who worked for the Bill Clinton administration was killed after severe turbulence struck a business jet she was flying on earlier this week.
“Dana J. Hyde’s name was released by the Connecticut State Troopers, one of the agencies investigating Friday’s emergency landing at Bradley International Airport just north of Hartford,” NBC News reported on Monday.
The agency stated that Hyde, who lived in Cabin John, Md., and was 55 years old, was taken by ambulance to Saint Francis Medical Center in Hartford, where she was later pronounced dead.
“Her remains are with the Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner while the FBI and the National Transportation Safety Board investigate what happened aboard the Bombardier executive jet that was traveling from Keene, New Hampshire, to Leesburg, Virginia, before suddenly diverting to Bradley,” NBC News added.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration database, the private jet, which is owned by Conexon, a company based in Kansas City, Mo., had five individuals on board during the incident.
“We can confirm that the aircraft was owned by Conexon and that Dana Hyde was the wife of Conexon partner Jonathan Chambers,” company spokesperson Abby Carere said in an email. “Jonathan and his son were on the flight also and not injured in the incident.”
Dana Hyde served in the Bill Clinton and Barack Obama administrations and also contributed to the 9/11 Commission. https://t.co/BuDoOwEMhi
— HuffPost (@HuffPost) March 7, 2023
Conexon specializes in the expansion of high-speed internet service to rural communities, the outlet reported.
According to her LinkedIn page, Hyde held the position of co-chair for the Aspen Institute’s Partnership for an Inclusive Economy. Jon Purves, a spokesperson for the organization, confirmed that Hyde was a part-time consultant and served as the co-chair of APIE from 2020 to 2021.
“During her time with us, Dana was a brilliant and generous colleague who worked closely with programs across the organization to build partnerships and enhance our collective work,” he said. “The thoughts of our entire Aspen Institute community are with Dana’s family and loved ones.”
Before then, Hyde worked in both the Obama and Clinton administrations and had experience in private practice. Additionally, from 2002 to 2004, she was a member of the commission that investigated the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, NBC News noted.
Hyde “served as a special assistant to the president for cabinet affairs and a special assistant to the deputy U.S. attorney general during President Bill Clinton’s administration, and as a senior policy adviser at the State Department and associate director at the Office of Management and Budget during President Barack Obama’s administration, the LinkedIn site indicates,” the Associated Press reported.
NTSB investigators are currently conducting interviews with the two crew members and two surviving passengers to determine, among other things, whether they were wearing seat belts during the turbulence that the plane encountered. The cockpit voice and data recorders from the jet have been sent to NTSB headquarters for analysis.
According to The Associated Press, the agency stated on Monday that it is investigating a “reported trim issue that occurred prior to the inflight upset,” which refers to adjustments made to an aircraft’s control surfaces to maintain stability and level flight.
After trim issues were reported with the same model of Bombardier aircraft, the Federal Aviation Administration instructed pilots to take additional pre-flight measures last year. “The directive, which applied to an estimated 678 aircraft registered in the U.S., called for expanded pre-flight checks of pitch trim and revised cockpit procedures for pilots to be used under certain circumstances,” the AP reported.
Flight turbulence refers to sudden and unpredictable movements of an aircraft while in flight. Turbulence is caused by changes in atmospheric pressure, temperature, and wind currents. It can occur at any time during a flight, but is most common during takeoff, landing, and when flying through clouds.
Turbulence can cause passengers to feel uneasy or uncomfortable, and in severe cases, can result in injuries to passengers and crew. Flight crews use weather reports and radar to anticipate turbulence and adjust the flight path accordingly.
Modern aircraft are also designed to withstand turbulence and minimize its effects on passengers. Despite this, turbulence remains a common occurrence in air travel.