Pilot, passenger walk away unhurt after plane crashes in Bookcliffs

The pilot of an airplane that crashed in the Bookcliffs is looked over by a member of the Lower Valley Fire Department on 16 Road on Friday night. The pilot and his passenger hiked out of the Bookcliffs onto 16 Road after the crash.

Two men, including a pilot, walked away from a single-engine airplane crash in the Bookcliffs on Friday night.

A Daily Sentinel photographer close to the scene on 16 Road reported the pilot was bloodied, but declined medical attention after meeting with Lower Valley Fire Department rescuers around 8:15 p.m., roughly one hour after the initial crash report. A second man who was a passenger on the airplane didn’t appear to be injured.

Their identities weren’t immediately confirmed.

The Sentinel photographer said the downed airplane was a Piper Cherokee.

Garfield County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Walt Stowe said the crash happened near an Encana well pad. One of the occupants hiked up to the facility in order to call 911. The airplane’s intended destination wasn’t immediately known.

The men managed to hike to 16 Road from the crash site, where they met up with their rescuers.

Grand Junction dispatchers first aired reports about a single-engine crash just before 7 p.m., initially reported to have happened around 16 Road and the desert. Initial 911 radio traffic indicated there were two survivors who weren’t injured, but “just needed a ride.”

Stowe said deputies Friday night planned to secure the site for investigators with the Federal Aviation Administration.


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