A Gust of Wind Is Blamed

single-engine plane
The pilot and a passenger were unhurt after the single-engine plane they were in was damaged during landing Saturday afternoon at East Hampton Airport.

        A small plane in the final stages of landing was blown off a runway at East Hampton Airport on Daniel’s Hole Road on Saturday afternoon at about 4, incurring substantial damage but resulting in no injuries to those on board.
    The Cessna 182 single-engine plane was coming in normally when a strong gust of wind out of the north caused it to be blown nearly 200 feet off the runway, onto the grass in an “object free zone,” a safety area established by Federal Aviation Administration regulations. The Cessna’s landing gear reportedly collapsed as it veered off the runway. Its pilot, Lisa McCarthy, and a passenger, Tina Alano, were not harmed.
    Ms. McCarthy, reached by phone yesterday, declined to comment on the incident.
    James Ciccone, an inspector with the F.A.A., responded to the scene Saturday but did not respond to repeated requests for comment.
    Jim Brundige, East Hampton Airport’s manager, said that the member of his staff who was at the scene of the accident on Saturday was on vacation this week and unavailable for comment.
    The Cessna is registered to MAM Aviation L.L.C. of New York City, according to F.A.A. records.
    East Hampton Town Councilman Dominick Stanzione released a statement on the matter on Monday stressing a strong safety record at the airport.
    “The incident was clearly minor,” Mr. Stanzione’s statement read. “It would be misleading to read anything more into this incident than a one-time unusual accident.”
    Mr. Stanzione’s statement was related to concerns that a music festival that may be held on a closed runway at the airport this August could pose a danger to concertgoers, should a similar accident occur with as many as 9,500 people nearby.
    “The aircraft stopped . . . well outside even the farthest of several layers of parameter fencing proposed for the concert venue,” Mr. Stanzione’s statement said. “The accident was not a threat to the proposed concert venue. Importantly, safety and security protocols relative to the proposed concert venue require review and approval of the F.A.A.”
    The F.A.A. has yet to rule on the safety of the planned event. However, before Saturday’s incident, some of the private carriers at the airport had voiced worry that the chaos of a large concert and the increased air traffic of an August weekend might make for a dangerous combination.