Monday, January 25, 2021

Piper PA-32-301 Saratoga, N8224H: Accident occurred January 22, 2021 in Homestead, Florida

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; South Florida

Marina Mikes LLC

Location: Homestead, FL
Accident Number: ERA21LA123
Date & Time: January 22, 2021, 21:20 UTC
Registration: N8224H
Aircraft: Piper PA-32-301
Injuries: 4 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N8224H
Model/Series: PA-32-301 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: 
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: 
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition: 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling: 
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 3 None 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 25.130773,-81.035603 (est)

A small aircraft crashed in the park yesterday afternoon in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Cape Sable. Some nearby campers on East Cape Sable witnessed the crash and notified the park. These Good Samaritans rescued the four people on board. Thankfully, there were no injuries. Park Rangers responded along with the US Coast Guard who transported the passengers to Marathon in the Florida Keys. The plane was enroute to Marathon from Ft. Myers.

For boaters in the area, please use caution. A Notice to Mariners has gone out. The plane is approximately one-half mile offshore of Cape Sable in about 10 feet of water with the tail sticking out.

On January 22 at 4:25 p.m., Everglades National Park received notification of a small aircraft crash near Cape Sable.

Park Rangers and the U.S. Coast Guard responded to the remote beach area along the Gulf of Mexico in the park.

Nearby campers at the East Cape Sable wilderness campsite rescued the four passengers and brought them back to shore. No injuries were reported.

The Piper PA-32-301 Saratoga had taken off from Fort Myers headed for Marathon in the Florida Keys. 

The plane went down approximately one-half mile from shore in about 10 feet of water.

A Notice to Mariners has been issued as the plane is mostly submerged with the tail protruding from the water.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are leading the investigation and coordinating the removal of the plane with the National Park Service. 

Park staff are monitoring the site and will be evaluating environmental impact.

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