Two people have been injured, one critically, after a light plane crash south of Port Macquarie airport on Friday night.
A man, the passenger in the small aircraft, was winched from the crash site in dense bushland close to midnight. He was in a critical condition and was expected to be airlifted to Newcastle’s John Hunter Hospital.
The female pilot, the only other occupant, was taken to Port Macquarie Base Hospital with a number of injuries but in a stable condition.
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s Peter Gibson said the plane was from the Australian International Aviation College in Port Macquarie.
The distress beacon was activated soon the pilot left the Boundary Rd airport at 8.30pm on Friday.
The site will be off limits while inquiries into the incident continue.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau investigators are expected to be in Port Macquarie by lunchtime.
VIDEO: Inspector Stuart Campbell at the scene on Friday night.
10.45PM FRIDAY: A multi-agency rescue operation operation is underway south of Port Macquarie airport after a light plane crash.
Fire Rescue NSW, police, paramedics and the State Emergency Service have found and are in the process of extracting two survivors.
One, Inspector Stuart Campbell said, will come from the crash site, in dense swampland near Lindfield Park Rd, off the Oxley Highway, in an ambulance.
The other will be winched out by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.
The plane, from the Australian International Aviation College in Port Macquarie, activated its distress beacon soon after leaving the airport at 8.30pm.
It is believed pilot and trainee delivered a mayday call before communication was lost.
The distress beacon signal was picked up by Australian Search and Rescue in Canberra.
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s Peter Gibson said the plane involved was a Diamond 40, “a small aircraft”.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau officials will be involved in an investigation into the incident.