Sunday, November 21, 2021

Cessna 172N Skyhawk, N8074E: Accident occurred November 21, 2021 at Old Bridge Airport (3N6), New Jersey

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; Teterboro, New Jersey

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: 

N8074E LLC 

Old Bridge Flight School LLC

Location: Old Bridge, New Jersey
Accident Number: ERA22LA070
Date and Time: November 21, 2021, 21:46 UTC
Registration: N8074E
Aircraft: Cessna 172N 
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Instructional

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N8074E
Model/Series: 172N 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
Operator: On file
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 Minor 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 40.329887,-74.346787 (est)

ENGLISHTOWN, New Jersey — Flames engulfed a small plane in New Jersey on Sunday when the student pilot crashed at Old Bridge Airport, police said.

Emergency responders rushed to the smoking Cessna 172N Skyhawk around 4:45 p.m., officials said. 

The student pilot, who was the only person on the plane, escaped with minor injuries.

Pilot Robert Carsey Jr., who’d planned to land elsewhere, spotted what happened to the Cessna and landed to help, he told PIX11 News.

“By the time I parked it and got in my car with an extinguisher, it was clear that the airplane was a total loss,” he said.

A student pilot on a solo flight escaped serious injury Sunday afternoon when his plane caught fire after veering off the runway while landing at Old Bridge Airport, police said.

The student pilot, who is 18, had just touched down at about 4:30 p.m., when the plane left the runway, Old Bridge Police Capt. Joseph Mandola said. He did not publicize the pilot’s name.

“He wasn’t ejected from the plane. He got out of the plane under his own power,” said Mandola. “He’s lucky because he got out of the plane and it was completely engulfed.”

The young aviator suffered bumps and scratches, but was not seriously hurt, said Mandola, adding that he was taken to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick for observation.

The Cessna Skyhawk was destroyed by the fire, Mandola said. The New Jersey State Police was notified of the crash, and Old Bridge Police detectives took photos of the wreckage to provide to the Federal Aviation Administration, Mandola said.

Old Bridge Airport is a privately owned airstrip on Pension Road in the southern corner of the Middlesex County township, adjacent to the Old Bridge Township Raceway Park motorsports complex.

Mandola said the student was being coached by an instructor on the ground with airport’s one flight school. The one school listed for the airport is Old Bridge Flight School. The school did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday.

The school’s home page includes a photo of a young child in an old-fashioned leather flight helmet and goggles, with the motto, “Live the dream: Learn to fly.”

The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed Sunday that a small plane crashed while attempting to land during the afternoon in Englishtown, New Jersey.

The incident happened at the Old Bridge Airport in Middlesex County. The Federal Aviation Administration said a Cessna 172N Skyhawk crashed while trying to land here at around 4:45pm.

Only the pilot was on board, and authorities have not released any information about whether that pilot suffered any injuries.

CBS2’s Nick Caloway reported seeing some police and fire personnel entering the airport, as they worked to sort out why the plane crashed.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate, and more should be known on Monday.


  1. Grab from the live feed at

    1. That live feed is an awesome feature! I wish all airports had that.

  2. Here is a permanent link along with the student's previous landings today in 4k HD.

  3. As soon as he starts that pitch up you can tell what's going to happen next. He's so lucky as that usually results in a fatal outcome.

  4. It looked like a relatively stable approach but no flare and he just hit hard and bounced. My guess is panic set in at that moment. I remember when I was a student solo in a 172 early on and had a couple of pucker factors on windy landings but both times got control of my emotions and reverted to my training (fly the aircraft first). He's a very fortunate young man but clearly needs more instruction before his instructor endorses his next solo flight.

  5. Video of the event appeared to show a hard bounce on landing, followed by a severe nose up attitude, followed by hard nose down and impact. My non-professional conclusion would suspect a power-on stall while attempting to go around.

  6. "A 172 for instance on final is 60 kias on a normal landing. If you trim it out for 60 and have to go around the aircraft will most definately pitch up on its own accord due to increased lift generated by propwash but it shouldn't be uncontrollable and part of your training should be on how to deal with it." Brian Thibodeaux

    1. He also most likely had a lot of nose-up elevator trim on too!

  7. The RV pilot who landed afterwards is a menace. He announced he was going around, but then decided to land anyway, but made ZERO announcements about his change of plans on frequency, despite others broadcasting that aircraft should divert. Great way to collide with rescuers when you change your mind and decide to swoop in and try to play Captain Save-a-bro.

    1. I'm curious whether you saw and whether that changed your opinion.

    2. Saw it, didn't change my opinion. Savior pilot offered no explanation about why he was somehow lacked the ability to broadcast his intentions on CTAF to: abandon his announced go around, make an aggressive dive to land, and perform a high-speed taxi to parking. He also admitted his fire extinguisher did very little to suppress the fuel fed fire. I have no doubt he meant well - the road to hell is paved with good intentions - but that doesn't mean impulsive actions taken without thought or care should be encouraged. What would have happened if another bystander heard him saying he was going around, assumed the runway was clear and drove or ran straight to the accident and got hit? You can clearly see a person standing on the grass next to the runway as he landed. 10 seconds later and there could have been another accident and probably a fatal one.

      PS what's with these millennial pilots calling themselves "drivers"? Seriously? Maybe I'm old, but drivers operate cars and pilots fly planes! Why invent some new usage of an old term just to sound "cool"?


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