Light plane crash 07-18-06

PHONE: 961-2252
JULY 18, 2006


An experimental light plane crashed Tuesday afternoon (July 18, 2006) near the Hilo airport.

The Gyroplane, a small two-blade helicopter, crashed around 3:15 p.m.

The operator of the plane, a 71-year-old Puna man, had been in flight less than 10 minutes when he experienced mechanical problems.

Passersby didn’t see the aircraft go down but heard the operator moaning in the bushes and pushed their way to his side. The crash site was a quarter-mile north of Runway A-26 and about 10-15 feet mauka of Kalanianaole Avenue, on the 1400 block.

The operator was taken by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center, where he was treated for minor injuries.

Hawaii county police are assisting the National Transportation Safety Board, which is the lead agency responding to the crash.

NTSB officials aren’t expected to arrive immediately. In the meantime, the aircraft will be stored in a Civil Air Patrol hangar.

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