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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Teens survive after airplane crashes on Kansas golf course

Associated Press

WICHITA, Kan. – Two teenagers were able to walk away from a rented airplane that one of them was piloting when it crashed onto a Kansas golf course.

A 17-year-old boy was flying the 1966 single-engine Mooney on Friday when it came down on the 14th hole at Tallgrass Country Club, Wichita police said. An 18-year-old woman also was aboard.

Nikki Womack, who lives near the course, said she saw the plane fly low over their neighbor’s home before crashing, the Wichita Eagle reported.

“I thought maybe it would flip, but it just hit real softly, pretty much,” Womack said. “It kind of bounced up” as it scraped through a sand trap and came to rest just short of the green. Womack dialed 911 as she ran outside to see if she could help.

The boy climbed out and was bleeding from the top of his head, she said, followed by the woman, who was bleeding and had an eye injury.

Marlene Wilcox, an operator at Wesley Medical Center, said Saturday the woman was released and the boy was listed in fair condition.

Wichita police Lt. Paul Duff said the plane was on its way from Nashville, Tennessee, to Jabara Airport in Wichita.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating, Duff said.

“The report is he had an engine failure,” owner David Dewhirst said.

Golf course superintendent Mike Colestock said nobody was playing the 14th hole when the plane went down on the cold, wet and windy day.

“I’m glad we weren’t having a 75-degree day and golfers out here,” he said.