Small plane hits, kills 2 elk while attempting to land on Oregon coast airstrip

(Photo: Oregon State Police)

A small plane hit and killed two elk while attempting to land on an airstrip on the Oregon coast Saturday.

Oregon State Police said the incident occurred at about 5:14 p.m. as the pilot was trying to land the plane at the Nehalem Bay State Park airstrip.

According to OSP, pilot Todd Rudberg from Shoreline, Washington had fully touched down on the airstrip and was slowing down when an elk ran in front of the plane.

OSP said he attempted to speed up and relaunch the plane to fly over the elk without hitting it, but the propeller and right side landing gear struck the elk. Another elk ran in front of the plane and was hit by the left wing.

The plane then spun around and came to a stop on the airstrip. It was totaled as a result of the crash.

The pilot and one additional passenger were on board at the time. They were not injured.

The FAA temporarily closed the airstrip and will be conducting an investigation.

Troopers from the Oregon State Police – Tillamook Worksite responded and investigated the incident. Assisting them were Nehalem Bay Fire and Rescue, the Manzanita Department of Public Safety, and employees of Nehalem Bay State Park.

Fish and Wildlife troopers were able to salvage a large quantity of elk meat.

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