News

Veteran pilot in amazing escape

THE 80-year-old pilot of a light sport aircraft that crashed on Broadwater beach after experiencing engine trouble told his wife: "I thought was going to die."

Don Matthews took off from a private airstrip at Bagotville bound for Murwillumbah yesterday morning, after his two-seater Brumby had had new ignition parts installed on the engine.

"The engine completely cut out over Broadwater somewhere, so he headed for the beach and he was going to try to fly to Evans Head aerodrome to leave it there," his wife Lorraine Matthews said yesterday.

"The engine cut out once, it cut out twice, and then it wouldn't start again."

Making a beeline for the relative safety of the sand, Mrs Matthews said her husband landed on the water's edge and a wave flipped the small plane on its roof.

"The front wheel went down a hole in the water and a wave flipped (it) over."

Stuck, with water lapping around the aircraft, Mrs Matthews said her husband, a recreational pilot of more than 40 years, thought he was going to die.

"He thought he was going to drown because he was trapped, upside down."

A woman who spotted the aircraft on the beach released Mr Matthews from the cockpit and then called 000.

He was treated at the scene by paramedics for minor cuts.

About 12.30pm, Rural Fire Service volunteers and members of Recreational Aviation Australia (RAA) helped Mr Matthews right the plane.

The aircraft was partly dismantled yesterday afternoon before being taken away on a car trailer. Mrs Matthews said it was too early to say if the plane had been damaged beyond repair.

Mr Matthews is required to lodge an accident safety report with RAA and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

Topics:  aircraft editors picks plane crashes planes



WIN a fishing trip, $5000 BCF voucher and get free stuff

Want to catch one of these big fellas!? Get your name into our competition to win the ultimate fishing holiday!

WERE running a stack of reely incredible giveaways!

Three news subscriptions and a free paper for $3 - saywhat?!

No Caption

FORGET everything you thought you knew about a great deal.

What's fresh at your local farmers' market

Chillies should be available at your local farmers' market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL

Chillies, figs, finger limes, eggplants are ripe for the eating

Local Partners

High achievers honoured at Australia Day Awards

FIFTEEN new citizens to be welcomed and 27 exceptional citizens and groups honoured.


What's fresh at your local farmers' market

Chillies should be available at your local farmers' market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL

Chillies, figs, finger limes, eggplants are ripe for the eating

'More sick people will be jailed': Confusion over medical cannabis

There is ongoing confusion about the legalities surrounding medical cannabis.

Is it legal? Where can you get it? What are your rights?

This week's Northern Rivers markets list

CASINO: McAuliffe Park in Hickey St is the venue for the new markets.

Check out the new Casino Riverside Markets this weekend

Madonna hopes for election unity

Madonna hopes Donald Trump's election will "bring people together"

JK Rowling rules out Cursed Child trilogy

JK Rowling has ruled out a 'Cursed Child' movie trilogy

Buckley's chance in psychological thriller

James McAvoy and Betty Buckley in a scene from the movie Split.

Broadway veteran back on big screen with James McAvoy

Daniel MacPherson: acting’s a bit like channel surfing

Australian actor Daniel MacPherson in a scene from the American TV series APB.

THE Aussie export talks about making his mark in the US.

Shopping isn't fun if you can see dead people

Lisa Marie Woodham will be giving readings in Gladstone until Saturday January 21.

Shopping isn't fun if you can see dead people

What's fresh at your local farmers' market

Chillies should be available at your local farmers' market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL

Chillies, figs, finger limes, eggplants are ripe for the eating

Agents desperate for stock as homebuyers circle region

Coorabell houses had a whopping median sale price of $1.4 million.

Lower price ranges stand out as Coffs property best sellers

7 quirky Airbnb homes on the Northern Rivers

Broken Head Bodhi Treehouse

Stay in a shipping container or treehouse for your next holiday

Controversial Iron Gates development renamed

Raine and Horne

Peaceful, pristine and perfect is the new motto for Iron Gates

'That’s the nature of commercial reality': Lismore council

GAME CHANGER: The $13 million proposal by Quest proposal is for a three-storey complex featuring 41 serviced apartments, 53 on-site carparks, 24-hour on-site management, a gymnasium and modern guest facilities.

"It's a shame the development is no longer on the table"

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!