By Charles Curcio
Two people were injured Monday afternoon after a plane crashed down at Camp Barnhardt just after takeoff from the Stanly County Airport.
The plane, owned by local flight training school Pressley Aviation, went down just after takeoff shortly after 4:30 p.m.
North Carolina Highway Patrol Trooper Colton Smith said the plane’s occupants, whose names have not been released to the media at this time, notified the airport the plane was having engine trouble.
“It was a student and an instructor working on flight time,” Smith said.
According to Smith, the plane had turned around and was heading back to the airport.
“Once they realized they weren’t going to make it to the airport, they aimed for the field here,” Smith said, referring to a large open field at Camp Barnhardt.
The plane hit the trees just behind the health lodge, lost its right side wing and land nose first. The right wing ended up just behind the rest of the aircraft on the ground.
According to Smith, the instructor called 911 and was walking around with minor injuries. The student had “significant injuries,” he said, noting both were taken to Atrium Health Cabarrus.
The United States Air Force Fire Department responded to the call with its crash team, along with units from the Badin VFD and the Stanly County Sheriff’s Office.