Aircraft pilot suffers minor injuries after Houghton County crash

The pilot of an aircraft that crashed in Houghton County Sunday afternoon suffered only minor injuries.

Troopers from the Michigan State Police Calumet Post say the incident occurred around 5:00 p.m. in Portage Township. Preliminary investigation indicates that the single engine experimental airplane piloted by Dr. Douglas McKenzie of Hancock was executing a takeoff maneuver when a strong gust of wind pushed the plane into the top of a tree, resulting in the crash.

McKenzie, the sole occupant of the airplane, was driven by personal vehicle to Portage Health Systems where he sought treatment for minor injuries. The Federal Aviation Administration authorized the release of the aircraft to McKenzie, who made arrangements for its removal. No fire or rescue personnel were required at the scene. The incident remains under investigation.

Michigan State Police troopers were assisted at the scene by the Houghton County Sheriff’s Department. Both the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board were notified of the crash.