Timeline of Rescue Efforts for Single-Engine Plane that Crashed Just Northeast of Chicago Executive Airport

PILOT WALKS OUT OF WOODS AFTER PLANE CRASH

Scene on Dundee Road near plane crash northeast of Chicago Executive Airport.

Prospect Heights, Wheeling, and Northbrook firefighter/paramedics responded about 8:47 p.m. Thursday July 11, 2019 to a report from the Chicago Executive Airport control tower that a small plane apparently crashed, and was last seen a quarter mile northeast of the airport. Initially, the control tower report was the only call to 9-1-1. The control tower reported the aircraft was last seen over the top of trees.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the pilot of an Icon A5 light sport aircraft was attempting to land at the airport when it crashed in the woods a little over a mile northeast of the airport.


Wheeling police reported the pilot was the only person aboard the plane, and that initially he showed no signs of injuries. The elapse time to located the pilot and the plane crash site was about 18 minutes from the time of the 9-1-1 call from the control tower. Rescuers determined the crash scene was located in dense trees about half-way between the Des Plaines River and Interstate 294, and about 1,350 feet south of Dundee Road. Emergency vehicles from several police agencies, Wheeling and Prospect Heights fire agencies, and airport support vehicles lined up along the shoulder lane of eastbound Dundee Road. The emergency operation did not require a road closure for Dundee Road.

Initially there was no information available regarding where the flight originated. NBC’s Natalie Martinez reported that they were also “aggressively” asked to leave the airport property. NBC’s Natalie Martinez and crew weren’t able to get any official information from the airport, but NBC and WGN were able to review the tower communications online and reported that Chicago Executive Airport control tower communications just before the crash involved two pilots that were approaching in tandem in two separate aircraft. A male pilot reported he was low on fuel, and was trailing an aircraft piloted by a female pilot. After the female pilot landed, she asked about the other pilot named Tom when she realized he didn’t land as expected.

After the pilot crashed, rescuers did not get a pinpointed report of the location of the crash — only that the aircraft was about one-quarter mile northeast of the airport, and possibly near I-294 and Dundee Road. Firefighters were also dispatched to search Dam 1 Woods near Dundee Road east of the Des Plaines River. Firefighters also searched the woods north of Dundee Road east of Portwine Road until it was confirmed that the pilot was south of Dundee Road. At 8:58 p.m. the pilot contacted the control tower, and reported he was safely out of the plane. At 9:05 p.m. firefighters were able to identify a cell phone ping from the pilot’s 9-1-1 call between Dam 1 Road and I-294, south of Dundee Road. Firefighters shared screen shots of the location on their phones. Police found the pilot and joined the pilot in the woods by 9:21 p.m. Police and firefighters escorted the pilot out of the woods, and the pilot reached the shoulder of eastbound Dundee Road by about 9:40 p.m. A Wheeling fire lieutenant encouraged the pilot to be evaluated by firefighter/paramedics as he was walked out of the thick woods with rescuers. The pilot, wearing an Icon A5 aircraft T-shirt was placed on a gurney and transferred to an awaiting Wheeling Fire Department ambulance. He was then transported by Wheeling firefighter/paramedics to Glenbrook Hospital.

A small plane reportedly crashed into the Dam Woods near the Chicago Executive Airport. Tom Negovan was live at the scene.

Rescuers escorted an apparently uninjured pilot, who was wearing an Icon A5 aircraft T-shirt, to safety after the single-engine Icon A5 might have run out of fuel during approach to Chicago Executive Airport.

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Plane Crash Scene Map at Chicago Executive Airport July 11, 2019
Plane Crash Scene Map at Chicago Executive Airport July 11, 2019.