MONTICELLO – A 66-year-old Troy, Maine man was able to walk away from his single-engine Cessna 210 airplane after he landed on a stretch of Route 42 that had minimal traffic on the Thompson/Forestburgh town line, three miles south of Monticello.
The aircraft caught fire at around 12:45 p.m. on Friday when Mark Simmons landed it. He told Sullivan County Sheriff’s deputies that he was en route from Sussex, New Jersey to Sullivan County Airport in White Lake when he developed engine trouble about nine miles out.
The Monticello Fire Department responded and quickly extinguished the flames.
Sheriff Mike Schiff, himself a pilot, said that the experience and skill of the pilot in this incident was clearly apparent. “Thank God no one was injured or killed,” Schiff said.
Assisting at the scene were the Rock Hill, Monticello and Forestburgh fire departments, State Department of Transportation and Mobile Medic Ambulance.
Federal Aviation Administration investigators also responded and released the scene at about 7 p.m.
The crash remains under investigation.