News

Actions

UPDATE: Coast Guard suspends search response to plane crash off Virginia Coast

Default-Image_1280x720.png
Posted at 5:06 PM, Aug 30, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-31 19:05:30-04

UPDATE: PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard suspended its search at 11:30 a.m. Sunday for the pilot of a plane that crashed Saturday approximately 51 miles southeast of Chincoteague Island.

A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane crew searched until sunset Saturday and the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Beluga searched through the night until Sunday morning for wreckage or any sign of the pilot aboard the downed aircraft.

A good Samaritan fisherman in the vicinity of the crash recovered a wheel and an engine cowling thought to belong to the crashed plane and turned it over to the crew of Cutter Beluga. Both items are scheduled to be turned over to the National Transportation Safety Board.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard 5th District in Portsmouth received notification at approximately 2:40 p.m. Saturday that the single-engine Cirrus aircraft with only the pilot aboard failed to land at Manassas Regional Airport as scheduled. Instead, the Cirrus remained at an altitude of approximately 13,000 feet and continued into restricted air space in the vicinity of Washington, D.C.

Two U.S. NORAD F-16 aircraft came alongside the Cirrus to investigate and observed the pilot to be unconscious in the cockpit.

The F-16 airmen escorted the Cirrus on its course over the Eastern Shore of Virginia until it crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.

The Coast Guard launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew and an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Air Station Elizabeth City in North Carolina and the crew of Cutter Beluga, homeported in Virignia Beach, to respond Saturday afternoon.

Portsmouth Va.- The Coast Guard is responding to a plane crash that happened Saturday about 51 miles southeast of Chincoteague Island.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard 5th District in Portsmouth got notified at around 2:40 p.m. that a single-engine Cirrus SR22 aircraft with the pilot aboard failed to land at Manassas Regional Airport as scheduled.

Instead, the Cirrus stayed at an altitude of about 13,000 feet and continued into restricted air space near Washington, D.C.

Two U.S. F-16 aircraft came alongside the Cirrus SR22 to investigate and found that the pilot was unconscious in the cockpit.

The F-16 airmen escorted the Cirrus on its course over the Eastern Shore of Virginia until it eventually ran out of fuel and crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.

The Coast Guard launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew and an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Air Station Elizabeth City North Carolina and the crew of Cutter Beluga to respond.

At this time, the Coast Guard is still searching for the plane with no confirmed deaths.