Jeff Burlew – Tallahassee Democrat
A small plane that ran into mechanical problems over Tallahassee crashed this morning off Tram Road and Capital Circle. No one was injured.
A Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft with only the pilot aboard was traveling from the St. Petersburg area to Columbus, Georgia, when it experienced “mechanical malfunction,” said Jim Durwin, deputy director of Aviation at Tallahassee International Airport.
“They declared an inflight emergency as a result … and they were attempting to divert to Tallahassee International Airport. The aircraft did not make the airport but crashed off Tram Road at approximately 7:55 a.m.
The plane, a six-seat, single-engine aircraft, crashed in a wooded area south of the state office complex and SouthWood near Crowder sand pit, Durwin said.
The Tallahassee Police Department, the Tallahassee Fire Department, the Leon County Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Medical Services along with airport personnel responded to the scene.
“The pilot appears to be uninjured,” Durwin said. “He was transported to the hospital to get checked out as a precaution.”
Melba Phillips was taking her daughter to Florida State University School when she saw the plane fly over them off Four Oaks Boulevard. She noticed the plane was flying “very low” and that the blades in front were not rotating.
“I thought that was odd and kind of scary,” she said in an email. “So glad the pilot is safe.”
It was the second small airplane crash in Tallahassee in roughly a month.
On Nov. 4, a vintage P-51 Mustang, in town as part of a traveling Tuskegee Airman exhibit, crashed while landing at the airport. No one was injured, though the crash grounded commercial air traffic for several hours.
The plane that crashed off Tram Road is registered to Aeromed Transport Co., LLC, based in Thomasville, Georgia, according to FAA records.
There were no impacts to airport operations as a result of the crash, Durwin said.
“The FAA and the NTSB have been notified,” he said. “The scene is being secured by law enforcement pending coordination with both of those agencies.”