Pilot still fighting for life after Caloundra crash
A BRISBANE pilot is in a critical condition in hospital after the light plane he built himself crashed while trying to land at Caloundra Aerodrome on Saturday.
Ben Berg, 49, was one of four people on board the Sling 4 plane which hit the ground and flipped near the end of the runway about 11.45am.
While two of his passengers managed to escape the wreck with relatively minor injuries, the pilot and another man aged in his 20s were trapped for more than an hour while emergency crews cut them free.
Mr Berg's daughter Micayla Van Den Berg said her father and mother had flown to Caloundra from Jacobs Well earlier in the day to take her and her friends on joyflights.
She had been on an earlier flight and was on the ground at the airport when the accident happened.
It appeared the engine had stalled as the plane was landing, causing it to flip.
Mr Berg and his daughter's friend Stephan were trapped in the front of the plane.
The other two passengers in their 20s were in the back of the plane and suffered only minor injuries.
Ms Van Den Berg said her dad had been flying for about seven years and there was no sign of any problems with the plane before the crash happened.
Mr Berg underwent surgery in the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital on Saturday night and was in a critical but stable condition at the time of print.
Earlier, Sunshine Coast Police District Inspector Matt Wilson said he could not confirm early reports the aircraft had made two failed attempts at landing before crashing.
"Look, it's early days and obviously that'll be the subject of the investigation as to the cause of the accident," he said.
Sunshine Coast Council deputy mayor Tim Dwyer said these kinds of incidents were rare at the general aviation facility.
"The Caloundra Aerodrome is a safe aerodrome, we've had very few major incidents here," he said.