INDIAN LAND, S.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – A pilot and passenger are OK after their aircraft landed in the Catawba River Friday morning, according to the York County Sheriff’s Office.
The incident happened around 10:50 a.m. alongside Charlie Horse Road in Rock Hill.
First responders said the pilot and passenger described the incident as a ‘soft landing.’ As soon as the plane hit the water, it flipped upside down.
Officials said the two occupants got out and swam to the banks, waiting for help.
“Their training kicked in, and they were able to land the plane safely — or as safe as they possibly could — in the area they were given,” said Indian Land Fire Chief Chris Miller.
Rescuers eventually arrived and put down ropes to anchor the plane, avoiding any chance it floated down the river. They then worked to snap off the rudder, door, and other parts before they guided it downriver.
It stayed in the river, towards the Lancaster County side, until about 4:40 p.m.
There’s no word on what caused the surprise river-landing at this time. The FAA has been notified and has taken over the investigation.