Mechanical issue forces pilot to land close to shore at Cocoa Beach Air Show, organizers say

Pilot OK after rescue

Pilot lands Navy plane after mechanical issue at Cocoa Beach Air Show. (Copyright 2021 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

COCOA BEACH, Fla. – Crews rescued a pilot who landed their plane close to shore at the Cocoa Beach Air Show after a “mechanical issue,” according to event organizers.

The pilot was in a TBM Avenger Saturday performing in the warbird parade when the issue happened, according to a Facebook post from the event. Officials with the Federal Aviation Administration said the incident happened around 1:20 p.m.

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Pilot lands plane close to shore at Cocoa Beach Air Show Saturday, April 17. (Copyright 2021 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

Organizers said the pilot safely landed in the water and was rescued shortly after. According to the event’s website, the TBM Avenger started flying again on Jan. 11, 2020, after restoration.

In response to the landing, the FAA said it will investigate along with the National Transportation Safety Board. FAA officials said the pilot was the only one in the aircraft.

The Cocoa Beach Air Show returned this weekend featuring two top U.S. Air Force demonstration teams.

About the Author:

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.