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Search resumes for passenger who reportedly fell from small plane into ocean

9:04 AM, Nov 15, 2013   |    comments
  • Photo courtesy of J.P. ROBINSON
  • Photo courtesy of J.P. ROBINSON
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The search for the passenger of a small plane who reportedly fell out into the ocean near Key Biscayne is expected to resume Friday.

Miami-Dade Fire Rescue and U.S. Coast Guard crews searched for hours Thursday after the pilot of the Piper PA46 said the passenger fell about eight miles southeast of Tamiami Airport with no parachute, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The plane, which was about 2,000 feet in the air at the time of the incident, later landed safely at the airport, and a massive search by sea and air began. The search was postponed Thursday night because of bad weather and poor visibility, but it resumed early Friday.

Police have not indicated any evidence of foul play and the pilot was very cooperative with the investigation, authorities said.

In the mayday call to air traffic controllers posted on the website, the pilot reported the bizarre incident.

"I have a door ajar, and a passenger that fell down. I am six miles from Tamiami," the pilot said.

A little later in the exchange, the air traffic controller asks: "So you said you had a passenger who fell out of your plane?"

"That is correct, sir. He opened the back door, and he just fall down the plane," the pilot said.

Authorities haven't released the identity of the pilot or missing passenger.

NBC6 South Florida

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