Authorities say he crash landed the plane he was piloting at 7:08 p.m. April 12 — a Monday — at the Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport in this community along I-81 midway between Strasburg and Harrisonburg, Va.
Virginia State Police are not identifying the pilot or his passenger because they are both underage.
The young pilot was transported to the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville for treatment of serious, but non-life threatening, injuries. The passenger was transported to nearby Sentara Rockingham Memorial Hospital for treatment of his non-life threatening injuries as well.
The plane, a Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee, was practicing touch-and-go landings at Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport. The 53-year-old aircraft is listed as being owned by DJAir.
Data from FlightAware.com show the plane’s last flight began at 6:18 p.m. and ended at 7:03.
As the fixed-wing, single-engine aircraft was attempting to land, the pilot’s controls became unresponsive, which caused the plane to drift left. The plane caught a limb and then struck several trees just outside the airport property.
Emergency crews responded to Little Run Road, just outside the airport, at about 7:15 p.m. to the call of a plane crash.
The crash is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board. Virginia State Trooper J.M. Cappo is leading the local investigation.
Review staffer Jim King contributed to this report.