Forest Service plane crash-lands at Fresno Yosemite International Airport

The Fresno BeeJune 16, 2014 

A firefighting plane under contract with the U.S. Forest Service landed nose down on a Fresno Yosemite International Airport runway Sunday night in an emergency landing, airport officials said.

The plane was on its way back from Lake Isabella in Kern County and headed to the Porterville Air Attack Base when the pilot noticed a hydraulic warning on the instrument panel, Fresno Yosemite International Airport spokeswoman Rhonda Jorn said. The pilot decided to land in Fresno to use the airport's emergency vehicles.

About 8:30 p.m. the plane landed nose down just as the hydraulic system failed, Jorn said. The pilot and passenger were not injured and refused medical treatment, she said. A Porterville Air Attack Base official said the plane was under contract to the U.S. Forest Service.

The plane was towed to the U.S. Forest Service base at the airport, Jorn said. One of the airport's runways was shut down for a while, but operations were not significantly affected, she said.

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6679 or bvaccari@fresnobee.com

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