Crash

A small airplane bound for Holbrook crash-landed in the desert west of the Safford Airport on Thursday morning.

SAFFORD — On Thanksgiving morning, a flight from the Safford Airport to Holbrook ended on San Juan Mine Road, when the pilot downed his airplane due to mechanical trouble.

The pilot, Steven Maxwell, told Graham County Sheriff’s Office deputies that his plane, a Cessna 182, started losing oil pressure 30 minutes into its flight. Losing control of the propeller, Maxwell made a crash landing approximately a mile down San Juan Mine Road from Airport Road.

The nose of the plane was damaged in the accident, and Maxwell told deputies a piston rod came through and hit the engine. Maxwell later removed the airplane on a trailer.

With Maxwell on the flight were his co-pilot, Travis Maxwell, and two passengers, Breena and Lillian McGehee. All four got off the plane safely without injury, though Breena McGehee, who was pregnant, complained of cramps. Medics took her to Mount Graham Regional Medical Center; no further information was available.

The Safford Fire Department also responded to the accident scene due to the large amount of fuel leaking from the plane.

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