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The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released new details about the plane crash that killed Hall of Fame pitcher Roy Halladay.
According to the report released Wednesday, Halladay had high levels of amphetamines in his system and was doing extreme acrobatics when his plane crashed into Tampa Bay on Nov. 7, 2017.
Halladay, who retired from Major League Baseball following the 2013 season, was 40 years old.
High levels of amphetamines
The detailed NTSB report states that Halladay was found to have amphetamine levels about 10 times therapeutic levels in his blood at the time of the crash.
A high level of morphine, which had been previously been reported, was also confirmed to be in Halladay’s system, along with the anti-depressant Fluoxetine, a drug that can impair judgement, thinking, or motor skills. The report notes that patients using Fluoxetine are cautioned about operating hazardous machinery until they are “reasonably certain that the drug treatment does not affect them adversely.”
New details about Halladay’s health and well being leading up to the crash were also released.
Several muscle relaxants and pain medications were found in Halladay's system. Those include Baclofen and Hydromorphone. Baclofen patients are also cautioned about the operation of automobiles or other dangerous machinery due to decreased alertness.
According to TMZ, Halladay’s father had expressed concern that abuse of prescription medications may have played a role in the fatal crash.
The NTSB report confirmed that Halladay was performing acrobatic stunts above the water in the moments leading up the crash. Witnesses had reported seeing Halladay attempting steep climbs and turns before losing control.
The maneuvers put loads of nearly two-times gravity on the plane, an Icon A5 Halladay had purchased a month earlier. On the last maneuver, Halladay entered a steep climb and his speed fell to about 85 miles per hour (135 kph) . The propeller-driven plane went into a nosedive and smashed into the water. The report says Halladay, 40, died of blunt force trauma and drowning.
Halladay’s plane reached speeds up to 105 mph while flying as low as 11 feet above the water, the report says.
Despite releasing these new details, the NTSB report does not include a final reason for the crash. A final determination and report is expected soon.
Halladay family responds
Brandy Halladay, Roy’s widow, released a statement Thursday in response to the findings, saying it was painful for the family. She asked that people not make assumptions or pass judgment about Roy.
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