CRESSKILL, N.J. – A small plane carrying two Coast Guard Auxiliary members that crashed onto an athletic field lost engine power despite being inspected less than two months earlier, according to a preliminary investigative report.
The report by the National Transportation Safety Board on the Sept. 3 crash in Cresskill didn’t speculate on why the plane’s engine malfunctioned. The crash is under investigation and a report establishing probable cause could take as long as a year to complete.
The NTSB report issued last week said the plane had its annual inspection in mid-July.
Pilots Jack Rosenberg and Erik Pearson were returning from Albany on a routine observation mission when their Cessna Skyhawk’s engine “stopped producing power” 2,000 feet above the Hudson River, according to the report.
As they descended, Rosenberg saw some athletic fields were in use, so he steered away from them and landed at the edge of a stand of trees.
Both men were seriously injured. Rosenberg has been released from the hospital, but Pearson remains hospitalized in stable condition, a Coast Guard spokesman said Monday.
The Coast Guard Auxiliary is a volunteer organization that promotes safety for recreational boaters. Rosenberg has been an auxiliary member since 2005 and Pearson since 2010.