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Plane Crashes at Watsonville Airport

The aviation accident happened on a runway Friday afternoon.

Update, 6:38 p.m. Friday: According to Watsonville Fire Department Capt. John Martorella, there was only one person on board the plane. The pilot only suffered a couple of minor cuts on his head and looked a little dazed as he sat in a golf cart. 

A pair of WFD trucks were on the scene along with an ambulance. There is still no information on what caused the plane to flip over and the FAA will conduct a further investigation, also according to Capt. Martorella.

Original story, 5:30 p.m. Friday: A plane crashed at the Watsonville Airport just after 5 p.m. Friday, authorities reported.

The fixed-wing plane apparently flipped and went down on Runway 20, according to emergency radio traffic.

There were two people on board. One, a man in his 50s or 60s, was able to get out of the wrecked aircraft on his own and possibly had a head injury, according to emergency radio traffic.

The state of the second person wasn't immediately available.

The plane crash is the latest is a string of aviation accidents linked to the Watsonville Airport.

A skydiving plane based at the airport crashed into an apple orchard this summer. Only the pilot was on board and he was not hurt.

In July 2011, a Santa Cruz family of four died when their small plane crashed into the nearby Watsonville Community Hospital campus shortly after takeoff.

Pablo Villagran November 03, 2012 at 12:47 AM
close the airport, more affordable housing it is needed! it is a misserable revenue for the city.
randy November 03, 2012 at 01:06 AM
A STRING OF AVIATION ACCIDENTS. I think that is a terrible statement. So if a pilot leaves San Jose Airport and is headed to Texas, ... as it gets close to Texas, it crashes.. And you tie it to it leaving San Jose??? Also, the crash that killed a family of four was determined to be PILOT error. Sounds like someone that is on the side of the fat four to get the airport shut down. Randy, saying WE NEED THIS AIRPORT
HizDesign November 03, 2012 at 02:28 AM
HizDesign also saying we need this airport.
Watzon McWats November 03, 2012 at 02:59 AM
Ewwww, no thanks. The airport adds a bit of spice to town. Watsonville is already the "low-rent district" of the Monterey Bay (to loosely quote John Martinelli). The homes area already quite affordable by Santa Cruz County standards. To be frank, more "affordable housing", is going to attract more people who can't afford to live here in the first place (our cost of living is %130 the national average). With that, I see more poverty, more crime, more health problems, more blight, more strain on our schools, etc, etc. It sounds cold, but that's my opinion. Watsonville is already cheap for this area, if you can't afford it, move somewhere more affordable like the central valley. Living along the coast is inherently expensive. I don't believe it should be limited to the wealthy, but it's certainly a luxury and not a necessity.
Lucas November 03, 2012 at 03:01 AM
Wasn't the airport there first? Watsonville doesn't need more high density housing.
Watzon McWats November 03, 2012 at 03:05 AM
Also, with double digit unemployment, why would we build more homes? Where are these new folks that move in going to work? And do you really want to complete with even more locals in the job market? Our town as I see it, is already at capacity. Our roads, schools, and employment pool are already beyond maxed out.
Watzon McWats November 03, 2012 at 04:11 AM
It's older than most Patchers, at one point in time it even went under the name Naval Air Auxiliary Station Watsonville. ;-)
randy November 03, 2012 at 05:26 AM
It used to be that the history was on the City website but since some of the CLIQUE wants it closed, the history has disappeared. If I remember right the original information stated this was to be always used as an airport. I wish I could find it again. This airport has a fantastic history but more so and in recent years, it was the only way in or out of this town. MORE "affordable" housing is only pulling the value of our houses down. We don't need more "affordable" housing. Right now on Amesti, there are homes that are limited to only farm workers. I don't know the exact wording but wow. Drive through there. "Affordable" housing allowed you to drive the Cadillac SUV .... etc. Randy, thinking.. do something for the middle class for a change
Cathy P. November 03, 2012 at 05:29 AM
Do your homework Pablo, then come back and add something intelligent to this conversation.
randy November 03, 2012 at 02:02 PM
This is very good information on the Airport that many would like to close. http://www.propertyinsantacruz.com/Watsonville-Airport-History.php "It should be noted that the Airport provides a location for the animal shelter, the police pistol range, a mulching operation, water storage tank and three wireless cell sites. This is noteworthy because any of these uses would create zoning issues and controversy anywhere else. The Airport is home to the largest known population of Santa Cruz Tar plant along with several colonies of native prairie grass. The Tar plant is on the California's Endangered Species list and is a candidate for Federal listing." Randy who feels the airport is a very important part of Watsonville
Stephanie Fontana November 03, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Are we all forgetting what that airport means am does for us during emergencys. During the 89 quake it was the only was In And out for supplies. During the fires of 2008 it allowed air fire crews quick access to fuel and supplies. That airport is home to dozen of business and even the Military. It is an assets to this town and county. Not just a piece of land!
Doc November 04, 2012 at 12:22 AM
Hey Pablo, the last thing Watsonville needs is more low-income housing. This town is already the toilet bowl of Santa Cruz County, and we don't need more criminals, illegals and people who leach off the system. We also don't need more traffic - we especially don't need more unlicensed, uninsured drivers. The airport also serves many important functions. As for future development for Watsonville, how about some HIGH INCOME gated communities that might bring a little money and class into Watsonville? Then maybe we could even get a freakin' Trader Joes!!!
Doc November 04, 2012 at 03:36 AM
I agree, our airport is vital for all of the aforementioned reasons. But whether we are talking about airport property or not, Watsonville does not need any more housing for people who are going to bring the community down even more. Let's keep the airport, and concentrate on bringing more money and even a little class to Watsonville. People (including our leadership) who want to have a Mexican town should go back to Mexico, then they can knock themselves out and have a Mexican town all they want.
Dave Martone November 04, 2012 at 08:06 AM
Well put Stefanie. I agree. Pablo got schooled.
Metric November 04, 2012 at 08:50 AM
Pablo, I'm sorry you are so short sighted. The airport is vital for a number of reasons of which being the use of emergency response during the rescue and every year during fire season. On top of that I hate to use the term " follow the money", but our local economy derives a large portion of its tax revenue from the major companies based in watsonville, employing people in watsonville and using the watsonville airport to travel between company locations. I worked for one company that had several planes being used every week to bring people into watsonville.
Watzon McWats November 06, 2012 at 09:38 PM
I like the way Doc thinks.
Robert rice January 20, 2013 at 06:45 PM
We don't need this joke of an airport. Rich boys and their toys play ground with far to many crashes to be safe! The airport days are numbered
Steve. Evans May 04, 2013 at 12:48 AM
Yes that airport is a joke! There are so many crashes at this field. The Feds should close it as unsafe. Most of these clowns just fly around getting lost in the fog. I know for a fact that the airports days are numbered
randy May 04, 2013 at 03:27 AM
That article is 6 months and 1 day old. Are you slow or something. The airport isn't closing. Get used to it. You KNOW FOR A FACT? hahaha

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