Key Biscayne

2 small planes make emergency landings in South Florida

Video: Small plane makes emergency landing on 18th hole in Key Biscayne

A pilot made an emergency landing near the 18th hole of Crandon Golf Course on Monday afternoon. The pilot and passenger of the single-engine, two-seater Cessna, were not seriously injured.
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A pilot made an emergency landing near the 18th hole of Crandon Golf Course on Monday afternoon. The pilot and passenger of the single-engine, two-seater Cessna, were not seriously injured.

Two small planes — one in Key Biscayne and another in western Broward County — had rough landings Monday, leaving at least two people injured.

At about 2:30 p.m. a pilot made an emergency landing near the 18th hole of Crandon Golf at Key Biscayne, according to Key Biscayne Police Chief Charles Press.

Press said the pilot and passenger of the single-engine, two-seater Cessna 150 were not seriously injured.

"He was a good pilot," Press said. "He put it down and no one was hurt."

While there were some golfers on the course, no one on the ground was injured, Press said.

The plane sustained some damage, including a broken wing.

Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said the pilot, who was headed to Miami Executive Airport from Miami-Opa Locka Executive Airport, reported an engine problem before landing on the golf course.

The plane, according to the FAA, is registered to Ameri Air Support Inc., based in Wilmington, Delaware.

Steve Jablonowski, who runs Miami-Dade's golf courses, said the plane landed near the beginner tees on the 18th hole, then momentum carried it about 500 yards down the same path a drive would go — straight to the green. The elevated green served as a ramp, which caused the plane to briefly lift again. Its wings clipped palm trees as it cleared the 18th hole entirely and landed about 200 feet from the clubhouse. The pilot ended up facing the tees where the plane first made contact with the ground.

“I'm very shocked the people walked out of that,” he said. “It's pretty bad. The plane is damaged.”

Jablonowski did not know if anyone was playing the 18th hole when the plane landed, though people were on the adjoining ninth hole.

“If it was earlier in the morning, or on a Saturday or a Sunday, there would have been people running for sure,” he said.

Less than two hours after the incident, Jablonowski said the 18th hole on the county-owned course was playable again.

“We're just happy that everybody was OK,” Jablonowski said.

Bergen said the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating.

The Key Biscayne landing came about two hours after a Piper Navajo plane crashed west of U.S. 27 and north of Griffin Road, about 16 miles west of Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport at the edge of the Everglades.

Bergen said the plane departed from Herlong Recreational Airport in Jacksonville and was headed to Fort Lauderdale Executive.

The pilot had to be extricated from the mangled plane, according to Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue. Two passengers suffered minor injuries, according to Miami Herald news partner CBS4.

According to the FAA, the plane is owned by Spohrer & Dodd Aviation LLC, out of Jacksonville.

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