Photo of the plane that crashed into an avocado plantation near Vélez-Málaga. SUR
Lucky escape for pilot after plane crash lands near Costa del Sol aerodrome
112 incident

Lucky escape for pilot after plane crash lands near Costa del Sol aerodrome

The light aircraft came down in an avocado plantation around eight kilometres from the Leoni Benabú airstrip at El Trapiche near Vélez-Málaga

Eugenio Cabezas


Tuesday, 25 June 2024, 11:19

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The pilot and sole occupant of a private aircraft has escaped unharmed after his light aircraft crash landed near the Leoni Benabú airfield in El Trapiche, near Vélez-Málaga on the eastern stretch of the Costa del Sol.

The incident happened at around 10pm on Monday 24 June, about eight kilometres from the airfield, at an avocado plantation known as La Isla, close to the Vélez riverbed.

The cause of the accident is unknown and being investigated, although investigators believe it may have been due to engine and landing gear failure, SUR has been able to confirm.

Following a mayday call made by the pilot, who was able to get out of the aircraft unaided, the 112 Andalucía emergency service control room mobilised Vélez-Málaga’s Local Police, Guardia Civil, National Police, emergency medical services, the fire brigade and Civil Protection volunteers, and also alerted the Coordination and Rescue Centre and the Air Traffic Control Centre, both based in Madrid. Although the pilot was uninjured he was taken to a local medical centre for a check-up.

The light aircraft was on a private flight that had departed from Granada airport and was due to land at the aerodrome in Vélez. However, the pilot made contact with other aircraft that were flying over the Vélez-Málaga area to ask if the landing gear had been deployed correctly. Subsequently, the aircraft crashed about eight kilometres away from the airstrip.

It appears that the plane suffered engine and landing gear failure. However, there was no explosion or fire as a result of the emergency landing, sources from the 112 Andalucía emergency service told SUR.

Apparently the pilot is a middle-aged man with a great deal of flying experience as he works as a captain for Spanish airline Iberia. He is the owner of a Fournier RF-10 private aircraft with French registration, which he flies privately.

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