Plane lands on highway in Ill. injures 4

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NEW LENOX, Ill. (CBS)– Four people suffered minor injuries on Thursday, May 13, when a small plane made an emergency landing on the Veterans Memorial Tollway in New Lenox.

According to Illinois State Police and the FAA, the pilot and three passengers were on board the single-engine Beechcraft BE24 at the time of the landing on Interstate 355 near 159th Street around lunchtime.

All four were taken to Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox with non-life-threatening injuries. The passengers included a 15-year-old girl and two 21-year-old women.

Family members told CBS 2’s Meredith Barack the pilot has been flying for years, and decided to take advantage of the sunny weather on Thursday to go for a flight. After he got to an altitude of about 3,000 feet, the plane lost power.

Police said the plane made an emergency landing due to “unknown mechanical issues.” The plane’s flight records indicate that it took off around 11:11 a.m. from Lewis University Airport. The university said all of its planes used to train students in its commercial aviation program are accounted for.

FAA records indicated the Beechcraft was manufactured in 1975 and is registered to an owner in Chicago.

The FAA is investigating.

All southbound lanes were shut down after the incident, but police later were able to reopen one of the three lanes.

Crews began working to tow away the damaged plane around 2:30 p.m., and Illinois State Police said it would take 30-60 minutes to remove the aircraft from the tollway.

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