COTTONWOOD, Ariz. — Authorities say a student pilot is recovering after
mistaking a road for a runway and crashing his plane into a fence.
The crash happened Monday night at the Cottonwood Municipal Airport.
Cottonwood police say the 42-year-old pilot from Oklahoma told them he thought
the runway lights were malfunctioning and thought a road bordering the airport
was the runway.
He realized his mistake but was unable to pull up. The plane then hit the
Cottonwood firefighters contained a fuel leak that resulted from the crash.
Police did not identify the pilot. He was taken to a nearby hospital for
The plane, a Piper PA28, was heavily damaged.
The Federal Aviation Administration will investigate.