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Hilo, Hawaii News, Sports, & Information Wednesday, April 16, 2014

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Posted: Thursday, December 19th, 2013 12:44 PM HST

Pilot describes decision to land plane in water

By Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) The pilot of the plane that crashed off Molokai says he broadcast a mayday call once he realized he wouldn't be able to sustain a glide long enough to reach land after his engine lost power.

The airport tower operator made contact with another plane in the area. That plane's pilot guided rescuers to the nine people he spotted floating in the sea one-half mile from shore.

Makani Kai Air pilot Clyde Kawasaki recounted Wednesday a loud bang soon after takeoff. After landing the plane on its belly in the water, he saw the cockpit covered with blood from hitting his head.

Kawasaki says he initially believed all of his eight passengers were fine. He was devastated to learn later that one passenger, Hawaii Health Director Loretta Fuddy, died.

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