Single-Engine Skydiving Plane Crashes Near San Martin Airport

A single-engine plane used for skydiving crashed near the San Martin Airport Saturday evening, according to the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department.

The Cessna 182 built in 1957 had just released four skydivers and was on its way back to the airport when it went down just before 5:15 p.m. near the southbound on-ramp from East San Martin Avenue to Highway 101, according to officials. The 30-year-old pilot, who was the only person inside the plane at the time of the crash, told the California Highway Patrol that he suffered cuts to his face and a black eye.

Dhar Mrityunjoy of San Jose was piloting the plane, which is operated by the San Jose Skydiving Center. Mrityunjoy said the plane's engine quit on the final approach to the airport. 

"His intention was to land the plane and he lost power on his approach to the runway," CHP Officer Jason Smith said.

Footage from the scene showed the plane come to rest next to the southbound on-ramp beneath highway metering lights. There were no flames, but the plane was damaged. 

A witness said the plane bounced on the shoulder of the on-ramp, sheared a traffic metering light and smashed into another pole.

The crash completely blocked the southbound on-ramp, but both directions of Highway 101 remained open while authorities investigated the incident.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash. There appears to be no questions about the plane's ability to fly safely, according to the FAA Registry.

San Martin is located just south of Morgan Hill and north of Gilroy.

Further information was not available.

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