Skydiving plane crashes at Grand Canyon
GRAND CANYON, Ariz. – A small plane crashed outside the South Entrance station at Grand Canyon National Park this morning.
Although investigators haven’t identified the owner, Paragon Skydive has confirmed it is a plane used for its skydiving operations at the Grand Canyon. Only minor injuries were reported.
“It’s a lease plane, we lease the aircraft,” said Paragon Skydive owner, Jason Theuma. “There’s no details as yet. We’re still trying to work out what happened.”
According to a Facebook post by Grand Canyon National Park, the plane was upside down, blocking both lanes of State Route 64.
Theuma said the plane was returning to Grand Canyon National Park Airport after a scheduled skydive with passengers. Paragon Skydive has operated at Grand Canyon National Park Airport, located in Tusayan, since 2016.
“Jumpers were out of the plane, everybody was out of the plane – there was just the pilot in the plane, but he’s OK,” Theuma said.
At this time, Theuma said they are unsure of the cause of the crash.
“I don’t think we’ll know for a long time. The NTSB will have to do an investigation to find out what happened,” he said. “We’re just extremely happy that everyone’s OK – very minor injuries – best case scenario for an accident.”
In 2019, a U.K. man died following a hard landing on a tandem skydive with Paragon.
The plan is registered to AWSM Inc. and leased by Paragon Skydive. It is a 1967 Cessna TU206B, single engine aircraft with fixed landing gear that seats up to five passengers plus one pilot.
Multiple agencies including Grand Canyon National Park, Kaibab National Forest and Tusayan Fire Department responded to the scene.
The crash is currently under investigation. Updates will follow as more information becomes available.
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