Wednesday, 29 May 2024

REGIONAL: Paradise man uninjured in plane crashes in Willows

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Carl Stuckey Jr. of Paradise, Calif., crashed his 1995 Kit Fox model XL single engine aircraft at the Willows Aircraft in Willows, Calif., on Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Photo by Glenn County Sheriff's Det. Greg Felton.






WILLOWS – A Paradise man escaped injury Wednesday when the small airplane he was flying crashed at the Willows Airport in Glenn County.


Carl Donald Stuckey Jr., 62, was flying an experimental class Kit Fox model XL single engine aircraft and approaching the landing strip at the Willows Airport when the plane's engine stalled, according to a report from Glenn County Sheriff Larry Jones.


A motorist traveling along Interstate 5, Dane Entze of Oregon City, Ore., saw the crash and called 911. Sheriff’s Community Service Officer Barry Corbin was at the Sheriff’s Animal Control Office at the airport and responded immediately, confirming Stuckey was uninjured, Jones reported.


Stuckey told Det. Greg Felton, who was assigned to conduct a preliminary investigation, that he had departed the Paradise Airport at approximately 9:15 a.m. using visual flight rules and was en route to the Willows Airport to eat breakfast at the Airport Café.


As Stuckey was above the runway making his approach to land, the engine stalled, and when the tires impacted with the pavement, the aircraft bounced off the runway, Jones reported.


Stuckey said he added full power in order to level the aircraft and continue the landing process, however the plane bounced again upon contact with pavement. He then reportedly added power and attempted to correct but the craft ground looped, taking him off the runway impacting the grassy area between the runway and the southbound lanes of Interstate 5, Jones said.


The aircraft came to rest some distance from the interstate. The report said the smell of fuel was heavy in the air, however there was no fire.


The aircraft, manufactured in 1995, sustained major damage to the propeller, engine cowling and tail section. Jones said that Stuckey insisted, even though experiencing a crash landing, he sustained no injuries and declined medical examination.


Federal Aviation Administration Investigator Jim Hinson was contacted and requested the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office forward its report and photographs to the FAA, Jones said.


Glenn County Airport Manager Randy Murphy responded to the scene and inspected the runway for any possible damage; which he did not find. The airport was at no point closed to normal operations.


Jones said the Kit Fox was removed from the impact site by airport staff and will be temporarily stored in a hanger until the pilot can make arrangements for its removal.


The Glenn County Sheriff’s Office made arrangements for Stuckey’s transportation back to the Paradise Airport, Jones said.


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