Two injured after air emergency forces crash landing in Riverside

RIVERSIDE, Calif., — Two people reportedly suffered minor injuries and were hospitalized after a plane overturned in a field at the Riverside Municipal Airport this morning, Thursday, July 15. The small, experimental aircraft came to rest upside down just short of one of the airport’s two runways, Riverside Fire Department has since reported.

Early reports indicate the pilot reported experiencing unspecified “major difficulties” and declared an air emergency while attempting to land at the location. However, it was not immediately known if the pilot had planned on landing at the airport, or if the airfield was chosen at the last moment, due to the reported air emergency.


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City of Riverside police and fire personnel were dispatched to the airport, located at 6951 Flight Road, around 9:55 a.m., after receiving an “Alert 3,” meaning the aircraft was experiencing major difficulties, according to Riverside Fire Department Captain Scott Richmond.

When officials arrived they found a plane upside down in a field with two victims, the pilot and a passenger from the plane. Both were able to self-extricate from the overturned plane prior to emergency personnel arriving at the scene. They were evaluated and treated at the scene before being transported to an area hospital with injuries later described as minor.

Firefighters and other emergency personnel work at the scene of this morning’s plane crash in Riverside. Riverside Riverside Fire Department photo

Photographs and video taken at the scene of the crash showed the single-engine experimental plane upside down in a field short of the runway. The designation “experimental” is used for homebuilt aircraft that are licensed for flight by the FAA.

Evidence at the scene and details provided by fire officials indicated that after declaring an air emergency, the aircraft came up short of a runway and flipped over while touching down. Although the plane came to rest in a tinderbox-dry field east of runway 27, nearest Hillside Avenue and north of the Harvest Christian Fellowship parking lot, there was no fire, according to Richmond.

The National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration were notified and will be investigating the crash, the cause of which has not yet been determined.

Additional details were not immediately available.

This is a developing story that will be updated as more information becomes available.

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Johnny Lopez/Lone Wolf Media-OC Hawk News photos above, video below.

Contact the writer:

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County-based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.

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