Jacksonville teen helps pilot after plane crash near Dames Point Bridge

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A pilot crashed a small plane into a marsh in Jacksonville Saturday, authorities said.



The Piper PA-28 took off from Craig Airport, then reportedly had engine trouble around 10 a.m.

It crashed 2 miles north of the airport in a marshy area in Mill Cove east of the Dames Point Bridge.
Approximately 150 yards away, 16-year-old Tanner Wilson was fishing in a small boat.

"I just saw him kind of hit the water with his wheels. He bumped it and came back up," Wilson said.

Related: Plane crashes in marsh near the Dames Point Bridge in Jacksonville

Sky Action News Jax video shows the power lines the plane narrowly missed.

Wilson tells Action News Jax he called his dad, then paddled over to the pilot.

"He was already on the wing, standing there," he said. "He was fine. He didn't have any scratches. He seemed pretty calm about it."

Police say the pilot was not hurt. Action News Jax looked up the tail number and found the plane is registered to Airneck Inc. out of Jacksonville. We are working to confirm the pilot's name.

It's the third plane to crash-land in the water in Jacksonville in three months.

"We've had too many," Wilson said.

He and another fisherman waited with the pilot until The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office got there.

Wilson he's glad the man survived and was in good spirits.

"I told him he had a nice plane, and he said, ‘It was nice,'" Wilson said.

The Federal Aviation Authority is investigating what caused the plane to go down.

FAA statement:

"A Piper PA-28 landed in a marsh two miles north of Jacksonville Executive at Craig Airport in Florida about 10:13 a.m. today. The aircraft, which departed from Jacksonville Executive Airport, reportedly experienced an engine-related problem. Check with local authorities on the condition of the pilot, the only person aboard. The FAA will investigate.​"

STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on this breaking story

Download WJAX Apps