911 calls detail moments after 2 small planes crashed
'We got another plane crash,' operator can be heard saying in one of the calls
ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – Audio of 911 calls made moments after two small planes crashed over the weekend in St. Johns County were released Wednesday.
Two brothers in their 60s were hospitalized with serious injuries after the Florida Highway Patrol said their single-engine 1957 Cessna began having engine problems and went down about 7:40 a.m. Sunday off Barrel Factory Road in Hastings.
A woman called 911 after watching the plane go down on her property.
911 operator: "Do you need law enforcement or fire rescue?"
Woman: "I need rescue ... a little crop duster just crashed in my front yard."
Operator: "OK. Stay on the line with me, OK?"
A St. Johns County Fire Rescue operator then got on the line.
Fire Rescue operator: "You said a crop duster just crashed in your yard?"
Woman: "Yeah, a crop duster. I'm surrounded by farmland."
At first, the 911 caller believes there was one person aboard.
Fire Rescue operator: "Are you able to call out to him?"
Woman: "Yes. My husband just went outside to talk to him and I see his upper body coming out of the plane."
Operator: "You can see his upper body coming out of the plane?"
Woman: "Yup. Yup."
Operator: "OK. But you can tell that he's conscious and breathing?"
Woman: "Yes. Yes. His crop duster is upside down, crashed in this ditch there."
Operator: "It's not in water or anything, is it?"
Woman: "Not submerged, it's just floating."
But while still on the line, the woman discovered there were two people aboard. In the 911 call, she can be heard yelling to a man in the distance.
Woman: "Sir, are you alone? Your brother? His brother's stuck in there."
Fire Rescue operator: "His brother still? So there's another patient still on the plane?"
Another woman called 911 immediately after she heard that plane crash while she was sitting on her patio, but said she couldn't see anything because it was behind trees.
911 operator: "You didn't see it, you just heard it?"
Woman: "Right. I heard. I can't see it from where I am. I hear sirens now."
Operator: "Yeah, they're coming."
Woman: "Thank you so much."
About nine miles from the scene of that crash and about two hours later, a second small plane went down not far from County Road 305 in Elkton. Two men, ages 31 and 27, aboard the single-engine 1979 Cessna were not injured, troopers said.
A third woman called 911 to report the second plane crash.
Woman: “Um, I’m off of 305 and I think a plane just crashed.”
911 operator: “You’re off of on 305?”
Woman: "Did he cross? Did he cross? There’s a plane crash. What do I tell the cops?"
Operator: “Mile marker 305? We got another plane crash.”
Woman: "Joe’s auto. There’s a plane crash at Joe’s auto."
Operator: “Joe’s auto?"
Woman: “It just happened ... I don’t know the address. I can’t see anything.”
Operator: “All right hold on, ma’am. Hold on. We’re gonna get this coming hold on.”
Woman: “I don’t know what to do. What?”
Operator: “Are you off of Canal Road?”
Woman: “I’m off of 305. We just saw the plane and it was really, really low. And then we heard it crash.”
A Fire Rescue operator then got on the line to ask the caller more questions.
Fire Rescue operator: “Did you actually physically see the plane crash?”
Woman: “Yes, hold on. I’m getting in the car right now.”
Operator: “All right. Did you see it or did you just hear it?”
Woman: “We saw it through the trees and then heard it right after.”
The 911 call paints a picture of a chaotic scene, as yelling and screaming can be heard in the background.
Fire Rescue operator: “What’s going on out there? Help me out. Can you do me a favor and talk to me what you saw or what you can’t see? Do you see smoke? Do you see flames?”
Woman: “There are two people, OK, they’re walking around so I don’t think they’re hurt. There’s two people. They both crashed their plane.”
Troopers said the pilot had been practicing emergency drills and made an error, which led to the crash.
Sunday's crashes were unrelated.
Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.