Bonita Springs man skids plane off runway, ends up in swamp near Naples Municipal Airport

A Bonita Springs man escaped injury after crashing his plane Wednesday at the Naples Municipal Airport.

George H. Petros, of the 26000 block of Rosewood Pointe Lane, lost control of his small plane, skidded off a runway and ended in a swampy area nearby.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the incident and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine probable cause of the accident, FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said in an email.

“He was absolutely lucky,” Ryan Frost, director of airport operations. “He didn’t get injured.”

The plane was removed from the swampy area Wednesday night.

Petros was taking off in a 4-seat Grumman Tiger around 10 p.m. at the Naples Municipal Airport when he crashed through a perimeter fence and ended up in a flooded area on the western side of the airport, said Frost.

The plane is based at the Naples airport. Frost said the pilot was doing a touch-and-go, or a night recurrency training.

Petros, who was the pilot Wednesday night, could not be reached for comment. There was no fire and relatively minor damage to the aircraft.

The perimeter fence was about 600 feet off the runway, and the plane ended up about 150 to 200 feet beyond that.

Emergency responders, Naples police, Naples firefighters, and officials from the Naples Airport Authority responded to the crash.

Frost said Wednesday’s incident doesn’t necessary raise safety concerns.

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