YUBA COUNTY, Calif - Authorities on Sunday morning rescued a pilot at the Yuba River after his small plane crashed and knocked down power lines, but luckily the pilot received only minor injuries and left a few houses without power.
According to the Yuba County Sheriff’s Department, deputies were dispatched to the edge of the Yuba River just west of Sycamore Ranch in Brown’s Valley just before 9 a.m.
A witness along the river called 911 to report a low flying plane on fire crash into the river.
The pilot known as 66-year-old Timothy Bennett was able to escape the cockpit of the plane and sit on top of the aircraft while waiting to be rescued.
The cockpit of the aircraft was approximately 3 feet of water in a side channel along the main channel of the Yuba River, according to YCSD.
CHP helicopter H20 responded to the river and rescued Bennett, who was conscious and breathing fine but was later sent to UC Davis Medical Center for minor scrapes and burns and possibly a broken ankle.
The witness said they saw the small plane a “Piper Cub” circling the area prior to hearing a small explosion.
Initial investigation indicates the plane struck power lines in the area, which caused 16 houses to lose power and PG&E was on scene to restore power, but with no estimated time of repair, according to YCSD.
Deputies said the plane had departed the Lincoln Airport and the pilot was reportedly on a scenic recreational flight.
The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the accident and sheriff’s deputies have attempted to remove the plane from the river.