The National Transportation Safety Board says a pilot who was seriously hurt after he crash-landed just outside Hillsboro last month reported problems with his plane minutes before the crash occurred.
NTSB officials say the single-engine Yak 52 aircraft took off from Creswell, Oregon April 26. The pilot, 73-year-old Gary Hagstrom, reported engine trouble above Salem, according to NTSB.
Minutes later, while above McMinnville, Hagstrom said he might need to declare an emergency, but didn’t specify the nature of the problem.
Another pilot flying in formation with Hagstrom urged him to land at the McMinnville Airport but didn’t get a response.
A few minutes later, the plane crashed in an orchard about three miles southwest of the Hillsboro Airport. Hagstrom and another man on the plane, Genaro Avoli, 88, were both seriously hurt.
Investigators later found damage to the World War II-era plane’s fuselage and left wing. Records show the aircraft is owned by the Classic Aircraft Aviation Museum.
NTSB says Hagstrom was headed to Scappoose.
The NTSB and FAA are investigating the crash and say the wreckage has been recovered and will be examined further.
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