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Small plane crashes at Smith Field; no injuries

A pilot and his passenger walked away from a crash landing Saturday afternoon at Smith Field Airport on Fort Wayne’s north side.

“They apparently came down without their (landing) gear down and did a belly landing,” said Craig Williams, director of operations for the Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority.

At 4:10 p.m., the plane touched down in the middle of the runway, skidded about 200 feet and came to a stop on the edge of the runway, Williams said.

The landing scraped the underside of the fixed-wing, single-engine plane and bent its propeller. No injuries were reported.

It was not clear why the plane landed with its landing gear up. The pilot and passenger declined to speak with The Journal Gazette. Their names were not released.

Williams said the plane had been practicing takeoffs and landings at the airfield. After the crash, firefighters were dispatched as a precaution, but the plane did not catch fire.

The plane, a Cessna R182 built in 1979, is owned by Auburn Aircraft Leasing, a group based in Fort Wayne, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Williams said the FAA will be notified of the incident and will decide whether to investigate. In general, though, such landings do not typically warrant a full investigation, he said.