Pilot walks away with minor injury after plane crashes into tree

DAWSON COUNTY, Ga. — A Federal Aviation Administration recovery team has dismantled a small vintage plane and hauled it away after it crashed in Dawson County Sunday afternoon.

The FAA said the two-seater plane, which was built in the 1940s, crashed just after noon along the side of Goodson Road in Dawsonville.

The only person on the plane survived the crash with only minor injuries.

"I heard a big thud and then I heard tires screeching," neighbor Tom Carry told Channel 2's Rikki Klaus.

Carry said he was working in his yard when he thought he heard a car crash. He ran down the road to help and that’s when he saw the plane.

"I see the tail of a plane sticking way up in the air," Carry said. "My reaction was, ‘Oh my God, I hope he's OK,’ because it was a pretty heavy hit he took.”

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There was only one person on board the plane. Firefighters said the man was a pilot out of Iowa.

"I was walking up as he was getting out of the plane," Carry told Klaus.

Carry said the pilot was shocked. His nose was cut, and bleeding. Paramedics tended to him.

"I went over and said, ‘Good landing. You made it. You're OK.’ And he smiled and gave me the thumbs up," Carry said.

Firefighters talked with the man. They say he bought the plane recently in Cleveland, Georgia.

"The plane was just purchased over the last few days, and he was in route back to Iowa to his hometown," Dawson County firefighter Lamar Adkins said. "He experienced some engine failure, difficulties, and had to make an emergency landing."

The pilot was released from the hospital Sunday afternoon.

Several hours later, an FAA recovery team took the plane apart.

"He's a very lucky individual because he put it down in a tight area,” Adkins said.

"I would have to say that he's just very fortunate. Very fortunate. Somebody was looking out for him up above probably," Carry said.