Wreckage recovery: aftermath of Noosa beach plane crash
A RECOVERY operation is underway at Noosa Main Beach to retrieve the wreckage of a light aircraft crash.
Clayton's Towing is on scene with a trailer, ready to transport the ultralight for further investigation.
"His jacket could have saved him": pilot's fight for life
UPDATE 4PM: SURF lifesavers who pulled the pilot of a downed light aircraft out of the water say his waterproof jacket could have saved him.
Surf Life Saving Queensland duty officer Guy Tanner said the IRB was launched immediately this morning just after 7am to reach a pilot who had plummeted into the ocean.
He said the lifesavers reached the man within minutes. He was floating face up with his helmet still fastened.
""He wasn't wearing a flotation device but he had a waterproof coat on that looked like it had just enough air in it to enable him to float," Mr Tanner said.
"He wasn't attached to his aircraft, but he still had his helmet on and his jacket had just enough air in it to allow him to lie face up instead of face down. "He was unconscious the whole time, but breathing."
Authorities are in the process of retrieving the wreckage from the water for further investigation.
THE DAILY TOP STORIES OF THE DAY
Pilot critical after Noosa Beach ultralight crash
UPDATE 12.30PM A 57-year-old pilot remains in a critical condition after his trike ultralight aircraft slammed into the ocean at Noosa Main beach this morning.
The man reportedly left from Teewah this morning with a friend who was in a second ultralight aircraft about 7am.
Witnesses have conflicting reports of what went wrong a short time later over Noosa Main beach. Some reported the pilot attempting a manoeuvre and losing control, other reported what looked like mechanical failure before aircraft free-falled, spun upside down and crash nose-first into the water.
Lifeguards rushed to the man's rescue, pulling him into an IRB before bringing him to shore.
Paramedics and intensive care doctor performed CPR on the man to save his life and he was airlifted to the Royal Brisbane Hospital by the Careflight Rescue Helicopter.
It is unclear what went wrong at this stage to cause the crash. The Hang Gliding Federation of Australia is working with Sunshine Coast Forensic Crash Unit to investigate.
The aircraft has been sunk out near the shark nets.
Coastguard Noosa commander Peter Milland said the wingspan was too large to lift over the Noosa Bar.
"The wreckage is quite big with a wingspan of about 9 metres we were never going to get it over the bar, especially with low tide," Mr Milland said.
"We have sank it not far from the shark nets and Water Police are out there patrolling to make sure no one touches it.
"They are in charge as we need to maintain the integrity of the wreck because this will need to be investigated."
Ultralight wreckage under police watch at Noosa beach
NOOSA Coastguard staff have headed out to the ocean to recover the wreckage of a light plane crashed which slammed into the ocean this morning.
Four vessels including Water Police and Coastguard are 400m offshore straight off the Noosa Spit on the northern end Noosa Main beach working to move the wreckage.
Witnesses told how the aircraft made a sudden dive, spun upside down and attempted to correct itself before slamming into the water nose-first about 7am.
The pilot aged in his 50s was rescued by lifeguards and taken by helicopter to hospital.
The man's condition is still unknown.
UPDATE 9AM: A MAN has been taken to hospital by helicopter after emergency services worked to save his life at Noosa Main Beach when his ultra-light plane crashed into the ocean.
Witnesses have told how the aircraft made a sudden dive, spun upside down and attempted to correct itself before slamming into the water nose-first.
US visitor Kim Nicholson said she was sitting in her hilltop unit when she saw what she thought was a large bird diving for food. She quickly realised it was much worse.
"When we heard the ambulance and sirens and helicopter arrive, we knew something was wrong, we knew it was a person who had crashed into the ocean.
"It was a free fall, we hope he's okay."
BREAKING: AN ULTRA light aircraft has crashed into the water at Noosa.
Eyewitness Simon Duffin told the Daily he was eating breakfast on the beach when he heard an aircraft engine roaring.
"When I heard the engine roaring the way it was I turned my head...I had a look at him, he was spiralling vertically straight down. I thought that's not right. He leveled out but then I realised he was upside down. He tried to do a dive to bring him back to vertical and he's gone straight into the water. The water plume was 50m in the air."
Sunny Coast crew is searching around the Noosa Bar for an ultra light aircraft after reports one was seen falling into the water— CareFlight (@CareFlightQLD) March 28, 2015
Mr Duffin said he called police before running up the beach to the Noosa Lifeguard tower.
"I ran along to the lifeguards and said: 'You need to get in the boat and you got to go now'."
"He's unconscious. And they can't be sure if there was someone else in the craft with him. I couldn't see the size of the craft, it could have been a single seater."
RACQ CareFlight Rescue reported this morning the Sunshine Coast crew was searching around the Noosa Bar for an ultra light aircraft after reports one was seen falling into the water.