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Skydiving Plane Crashes in Orchard Near Airport

No injuries have been reported from the 12:39 p.m. crash on Sunday.

Update 2:36 p.m.: A plane heading back to the airport after dropping skydivers malfunctioned and crash-landed in a Watsonville apple orchard Sunday afternoon, the Sheriff's Office reported.

The pilot — the only person aboard — was not hurt, Sgt. Robin Mitchell said.
The crash was reported at 12:39 p.m. behind Compton Terrace, a neighborhood off Freedom Boulevard about a half-mile north of the Watsonville Municipal Airport.

He was returning to the airport when a power surge caused engine failure on the Cesna 182. The pilot put the plane down in the middle of an apple orchard, purposely avoiding a nearby neighborhood, Mitchell said.

The crash caused a small fuel leak into the orchard, according to firefighters.

The FAA will investigate the crash.

Original Report: A plane crashed into an orchard near the Watsonville Municipal Airport at 12:39 p.m. Sunday afternoon, but no injuries were reported, authorities said.

Information was sparse, as emergency crews are still responding to the crash scene, behind a house at 11 Compton Terr.

The area where the plane went down is off Freedom Boulevard, just one block north of the airport.

A Santa Cruz family of four and crashed into the Watsonville Community Hospital campus. No one on the ground was injured.

This story will be updated.

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