Small plane crashes near Ocean City; pilot still not found

Maryland State Police divers resumed their search for survivors or victims in the small plane crash a half-mile off the shore of Ocean City.

Members of the U.S. Coast Guard are assisting in the Monday's off-shore search, said Boatswain's Mate Second Class officer Jeffrey Jonsson of Coast Guard Station Ocean City.

"They are searching for a possible downed plane with two persons onboard," Jonsson said.

State Police spokesman Sgt. Marc Black said divers went back into the water at 8:50 a.m. "to attempt to make recovery of any victims that may be in that aircraft."

The plane crashed about 4 p.m. Sunday near 130th street and sank shortly afterward, authorities said. No one was found before crews called off the search about 9 p.m., citing hazardous conditions. Crews believe they have found the debris field in the water and marked it with buoys and GPS.

Crews from the U.S. Coast Guard, Maryland State Police and Ocean City Fire Department searched the waters until Sunday evening before conditions forced rescuers to quit for the night. Maryland State Police said Ocean City Beach Patrol members swam out to the scene immediately after the crash was reported.

The Coast Guard said a good Samaritan aboard a pleasure craft reported the crash to Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads watchstanders, who issued an urgent marine information broadcast and dispatched crews from the service's Ocean City station.

Coast Guard crews aboard a 25-foot response boat and 47-foot motor life boat were assisting in the search, along with a Maryland State Police helicopter, according to the Coast Guard. The motor life boat had divers from the Ocean City Fire Department aboard.

The small plane, reported to be a Nanchang CJ-6A, took off from the Ocean City Municipal Airport, the Coast Guard said.

Baltimore Sun staff writer Justin George contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2019, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad