Small plane crashes during landing in Mattituck; no injuries reported

A small, single-engine aircraft crashed while attempting to land on the strip at Mattituck Airport Monday, according to Southold Town police.

First responders received a report of the crash around 3:32 p.m. and found that the pilot and sole occupant, identified by police as 84-year-old Bernard Stepnoski of Mattituck, was not injured in the crash.

Police chief Martin Flatley said Monday that the pilot was able to walk to a neighboring home to report the incident.

Airway Drive resident Stacy Martin was working from home when the plane made its landing. “It didn’t sound like a crash, it just sounded like something landed hard,” she said in an interview Monday. “It didn’t sound like anything terrible happened to the plane. It sounded like a hard landing.”

Mr. Flatley believes that the Cessna plane suffered “some type of failure” before it left the runway into a grassy area and sustained front end damage.

Reached by phone Monday evening, airport manager Paul Pawlowski said he was glad the pilot was OK. “We don’t know exactly what happened, but it was at a very, very low rate of speed,” Mr. Pawlowski said. “Luckily, with [the pilot’s] experience and knowledge, no one was hurt. He handled the situation well.”

Mattituck Fire Department also responded to the crash, which remains under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration.

This is a developing story.