Seaplane makes emergency landing just off Key West

A seaplane is seen Tuesday in Cow Key Channel after making what appeared to be an emergency landing following takeoff from Key West International Airport.

There were no reported injuries late Tuesday afternoon after a seaplane that took off from Key West International Airport ended up in the water shortly after takeoff.

Early reports indicated the U.S. Coast Guard arrived on scene first and there were three people on board, but none injured.

The plane made what appeared to be an emergency landing in Cow Key Channel, according to initial 911 communications reports.

“The pilot did an outstanding job, [he] was able to put the aircraft down without any type of damage, any type of injuries and safely land in the channel,” Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay said Wednesday on U.S. 1 Radio.

The pontoon plane — often referred to as an Otter — ended up near the mangroves about 100 yards off South Roosevelt Boulevard at approximately 5:15 p.m.

The plane did not appear to be damaged after the landing.

It was not immediately clear what caused the pilot to land the plane in the water so soon after takeoff.

Florida Highway Patrol is the initial investigating agency for plane crashes/incidents.

“This was a charter aircraft,” Ramsay said, “So they’re governed by the Federal Aviation Administration.”

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission was also notified of the incident.

“We’re thankful everyone got out of there well, but I’m sure it was a sight to see ...,” Ramsay said. “We’re thankful it was close by, and not 50 miles out.”

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