By Mark Shaw
Two men were injured Wednesday when the single-engine plane they were in made an emergency landing in the woods just west of Van Buren.
Maine State Police received a 9-1-1 call shortly before 1:00 p.m. from 35-year-old Leigh Smith of Presque Isle reporting he had to make an emergency landing in a Piper Cherokee 180 airplane. State police, Maine Warden Service, Van Buren Ambulance and North Lakes Fire & Rescue responded to the crash site off the Sullivan Road in Township 17 Range 3.
Sgt. Josh Haines said Smith was the pilot-in-training and was flying the plane when the engine failed. He and flight instructor 26-year-old Cody Anderson of Levant were forced to bring the plane down in a clear cut area.
Smith and Anderson were transported to Northern Maine Medical Center in Fort Kent with what police called “non-life threatening injuries.”
The aircraft had front end and wing damage, according to Sgt. Haines.
The accident is under investigation by the Portland office of the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board.