Airplane was taking off for Hawaii when it crashed

A firefighter sprays a crashed double-engine plane Tuesday

The twin-engine Comanche airplane that crashed outside the
Hollister Municipal Airport this morning had been taking off for
Hawaii, and the 300 gallons of fuel in the aircraft left local
officials with an environmental cleanup at the site, said Airport
Manager Mike Chambless.
The twin-engine Comanche airplane that crashed outside the Hollister Municipal Airport this morning had been taking off for Hawaii, and the 300 gallons of fuel in the aircraft left local officials with an environmental cleanup at the site, said Airport Manager Mike Chambless.

The airplane crashed after it had taken off just before 7 a.m. today in a field northwest of the airport property. The pilot walked away from the scene with minor injuries, said Chambless, who noted the man’s destination.

Law enforcement and firefighters arrived on scene. There was no fire, but crews sprayed the aircraft “because of the fuel there when they went to disconnect the electricals,” Chambless said.

Chambless as of this afternoon was unsure what caused the accident, the investigation for which the Federal Aviation Administration is overseeing. He did confirm the pilot is a tenant at the Hollister airport.

Chambless had been dealing with the cleanup in the aftermath and noted how the county’s environmental health department and the Hollister Fire Department had been on the scene all day doing that work. Crews must remove the 300 gallons of fuel that had been in the plane, which still was leaking as of this afternoon, he said.

“The FAA is doing the investigation,” he said. “Once they release his information, I can talk about it more.”

Operations at the local airport were not affected by the crash, Chambless said.

“It didn’t affect us at all,” he said.

Chambless said the incident shows Hollister has a “good example of an airport plan” because there are not houses “up against the airport.”

“You can’t say that about many places,” he said. “It cuts the effects of this to an absolute minimum.”

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