Moorhead Plane Crash Investigation Handed to Federal Authorities

At least seven people have something to be thankful for today.

A small plane made a crash landing in Moorhead last night and authorities say all of its passengers walked away with minor injuries.

Only one of the seven men aboard the plane was sent to the hospital, and authorities said his injuries were minor.

Rescue crews responded to the field at 70th Street and 40th Avenue South in Moorhead just after 6:30 p.m. last night.

At that time, the fog was heavy, but authorities are still not willing to say if weather caused the crash.

Mark Gainor, a flight enthusiast, says he tracked the flight online when he heard about the crash.

He tells us the plane was trying to land at the Moorhead Airport, just west of the scene.
“I saw that this plane departed about 4:09 for Baudette, made a quick turnaround in Baudette, came back here and supposedly landed about six, which it probably did, but it was the wrong spot,” said Gainor.
Sheriff Bill Bergquist says the case is now in the hands of federal investigators, and we may not hear from them for a while.
“They were here most of the day investigating it, but right now we have not heard any…things from them,” confirmed Sheriff Bergquist.
Authorities say everyone was able to get out of the plane on their own, but they were concerned about some of the damage.
“There’s a slight gas leak to it now. The fire department has been out there,” said Lt. Mark Empting with the Clay County Sheriff’s Department. “They did check it along with calling the state duty officer. At this point, it doesn’t appear to have any hazard of catching fire or anything like that.”
If you look in the field, you can see some pieces of landing gear several yards away from the plane along with what appears to be some heavy damage to the engine.
As of 3:00 Thursday afternoon, no officials were on the scene actively investigating the crash.

The field is no longer closed off by authorities.

They say the pilot has been released from the hospital.

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