Officials call off search for plane crash, pilot lands safely - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Officials call off search for plane crash, pilot and student land safely

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Officials call off the search for a plane crash site after learning that the pilot and his student landed safely at Bowman Field.

Around 9:30 a.m. Sunday, authorities received three separate reports of a possible plane down near the I-71 Crestwood exit in Oldham County.

Oldham County dispatch tells WDRB that of the witnesses, one was an off-duty commercial pilot who expressed great concern for how low the plane was flying.

Emergency personnel jumped into high gear--but say they remained skeptical about what they would find. "Nobody actually saw the plane crash, everyone said that they saw the plane very low and disappear below the tree line," said Assistant Fire Chief for the South Oldham Fire Department Kevin Parker.

Little did authorities know at the time, the plane witnesses saw flying low over Crestwood was on a training flight with a 14-year veteran flight instructor and his student--a teenager with plenty of experience and plans of a career in aviation.

The pilot, Dixon Jones, told WDRB that he was performing a common training exercise with his student where the instructor simulates the engine dying and has the student go through their emergency checklist.

The pilot said after performing the exercise--which puts them closer to the ground than usual--the pair left the area.

Parker said that it is very common to see planes flying in the area because it is more open than the landscape surrounding Bowman Field. "Generally we don't see them flying as low as this one was reported, however, they do fly quite a bit out here and you'll hear the engines going up and back down again. A lot of training goes on out here."

The pilot and his student landed at Bowman field around 11 a.m. unaware of the commotion they had caused.

Emergency personnel matched the witness description of the plane to the description of the plane that landed and called off the search around 3 p.m., after five hours of rescue efforts.

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