MANVILLE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Dozens of first responders rushed to the scene after a small plane crash landed in the top of trees in central New Jersey Tuesday, leaving the pilot stuck in the trees for four hours.
“County 3738 fire responding to Hillsborough Township to the Central Jersey Regional Airport for a reported aircraft crash into the trees while landing,” an emergency dispatcher said when the call came in at around 12:08 p.m.READ MORE: Vaccine Mandate For NYC Teachers, Department Of Education Workers Put On Hold By Federal Judge
The single-engine Cessna was unable to make the runway at the Central Jersey Regional Airport in Hillsborough.
The plane crashed into the woods and wound up suspended in the trees 70 feet up next to the Millstone River.
“I saw the plane approaching the runway and coming over the trees and then I saw it disappear,” an airport worker named Rick told CBS2’s Meg Baker.
Paul Richards also works in the area and questioned why another plane set to land was circling above.READ MORE: Gabby Petito's Father Announces Creation Of Gabby Petito Foundation Ahead Of Public Memorial Service
“Later on, we realized he was circling around the scene of the crash,” Richards said.
Police say the pilot is a 33-year-old man from Somerset County who had rented the plane.
“The plane was out of Hillsborough Airport had mechanical failure, the engine died. He ended up in the trees,” said Det. Lt. John Crater of the Manville Police.
The pilot, who told responders he was not injured, sat waiting to be rescued for more than four hours.l Specially skilled climbers were put in charge of the job. They had to climb up the tree and the rappel down with him.
The plane will remain under police supervision overnight and the NTSB will investigate tomorrow.MORE NEWS: Gov. Kathy Hochul Increases Pressure On COVID Vaccine Holdouts As Deadline For Health Care Workers Approaches
There was some concern about fuel leaking, but authorities say the plane is not in danger of catching fire or exploding.