COOLIN — No injuries were reported after a plane crashed while lifting off from an airstrip at Cavanaugh Bay on Sunday.
The crash occurred at about 2:47 p.m., according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The Cessna C172, which held a pilot and three passengers, flipped over turning takeoff, an FAA Aviation Safety Information Analysis & Sharing notice.
All four occupants walked away from the crash, according to a news story published by Spokane television station KXLY.
The plane’s pilot, who was not identified in the news report, told the station he encountered wind shear, which affected the plane’s airspeed.
Wind shear is a change in wind speed and/or direction over a short distance. It can occur either horizontally or vertically and is most often associated with strong temperature inversions or density gradients, according to FAA. Wind shears can occur at high or low altitude.
The most common sources of low-altitude wind shear are frontal activity, thunderstorms, temperature inversions and surface obstructions, according to counsel FAA distributes to airmen.
Witnesses reported seeing the Cessna struggling to take off. The plane pitched 90 degrees, struck its wing on the pavement, slid across Cavanaugh Bay Road on its nose. The Cessna came to a stop only a few feet away from a propane tank and several buildings.
“The fact that they walked out of there alive was amazing,” Gena Costa, a bartender at a restaurant next to the crash site, told KXLY.
The fixed-wing, single-engine aircraft is assigned to Jack B. Hohner of Spokane, according to the FAA N-number registry. The aircraft was manufactured in 1956 and was powered by an air-cooled Continental 0-300 reciprocating engine.
The Cessna sustained substantial damage in the crash, FAA’s notice said.
The turf airstrip is located about 3 miles north of Coolin. The facility is owned by the Idaho Transportation Department’s Division of Aeronautics. In 2015, the 3,000-foot by 120-foot airstrip averaged 67 aircraft operations per week, according to the website AirNav.com.
Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.