Two men were taken to area hospitals after a small airplane crashed Thursday afternoon near a private airstrip in rural Calaveras County.
Sheriff’s deputies and other emergency personnel were dispatched to the 10000 block of Hogan Dam Road regarding a report of a plane crash at an airstrip on private property between the communities of Valley Springs and Copperopolis.
When deputies arrived, they found that the occupants had managed to get out of the plane and were being treated by emergency crews at the scene. A witness reported seeing the plane flying low and believed it might have clipped a tree near the end of the runway, according to a Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office news release.
The pilot was identified only as a 72-year-old man from Lake Camanche and his passenger as a 75-year-old man from Pine Grove. Both were transported to hospitals by air ambulance helicopter, the news release said. As of late Thursday afternoon, no information was available on the extent of their injuries..
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The Sheriff’s Office said it was not known whether the plane – a 1981 Cessna fixed-sing single engine aircraft – was taking off or landing at the time of the crash.
The cause of the crash has not been determined. Sheriff’s investigators were at the crash site and working with the Federal Aviation Administration.