Pilot escapes unharmed from plane crash

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Trooper Kenneth Beaman, left, and Sgt. B.E. Pulliam, of the N.C. Highway Patrol, approach a single-engine airplane which made an emergency landing Saturday in a field near Williford Road in Sharpsburg.


Staff Writer

Sunday, March 11, 2018

SHARPSBURG — A pilot came out unscathed after his single-engine plane crash-landed in an open field at about 4:30 p.m. on Saturday off Williford Road in Wilson County, according to authorities.

Sgt. B.E. Pulliam of the N.C. Highway Patrol said Christopher Rowe, 50, of McLean, Va., suffered no injuries and was the only occupant in the plane. Pulliam said Rowe told authorities he was on his way from Fayetteville to Washington, D.C., when he noticed he suffered a loss of fuel pressure and had to make an emergency landing.

“He was just trying to find an area to land the plane,” Pulliam said. “He found this open field and ended up landing it. He did a good job. After he landed it, the plane tilted over and there was some fuel spillage. The people with the emergency management services and the firemen were able to tilt the plane in position to keep it from leaking out. The plane had damage to the propeller and landing gear.”

Pulliam said authorities placed tape around the plane, so the Federal Aviation Administration can conduct its own investigation. Pulliam said the plane should be removed by Monday.

Rowe was treated on scene for precautionary reasons. The crash happened about two miles from the Rocky Mount-Wilson Regional Airport, and the plane is expected to be towed to the airport for repairs, authorities said.

In addition to the Highway Patrol, the other agencies on scene were the Wilson County Emergency Medical Services, Sharpsburg Fire Department Station 11 and Wilson County Sheriff’s Office.