They never made it to the Hamptons.
Nine passengers and a captain boarded a seaplane they thought was taking off from the East River and headed to East Hampton Friday evening.
But they soon ended up back on land, rescued by an NYPD harbor boat after the single-engine Cessna was damaged in a failed take-off.
No one on board — including the creator of the TV show “Scrubs,”— was injured.
The plane tried to take off three times near the 23rd Street Pier and came down hard on the water in the third attempt, breaking three struts on the left side of the plane, said FDNY Deputy Assistant Chief Michael Gala.
The flight was aborted because of a mechanical failure, which is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board, authorities said,
The flight was operated by Tailwind Air Service based out of West Harrison in Westchester County.
Reports of a plane down in the East River near East 23rd Street and FDR Drive started to come in at around 5:33 p.m., the FDNY said. Several police and fire boats immediately responded, and found the pontoon plane floating in the river, listing to one side.
Passengers in yellow inflatable life preservers climbed onto the plane’s undamaged right pontoon, where they were picked up by an NYPD vessel. A fire department boat towed the damaged plane back to the pier.
Traffic was backed up on FDR Drive and dozens of people on the pier were told that their boat or plane was delayed because of the incident.
Bill Lawrence, 48, the TV writer who created “Scrubs” and other shows boarded the plane to spend the weekend with his daughter in the Hamptons.
“The plane tried to take off a couple times. It went up in the air a little, came down, went up a little higher, about 20 feet in the air, and then it came down hard,” Lawrence said.
“The pilot was calm and great,” Lawrence said. “When it came down he was like, ‘okay we’re going to need to do this quickly — your life preservers are here.’ Everybody had to lean to one side because the plane was tilting.”
When asked if he had taken the flight before, Lawrence quipped, “The one that goes into the East River? No, man.”
“I’m definitely not going anywhere tonight,” he added. “I feel very lucky and grateful, everyone worked really hard.”
Kendall, another passenger on the downed plane, who declined to give her last name, was rattled.
“I started crying. I was shaking, I was really nervous,” she explained. “We walked out onto the side of the plane and we were all standing there on the edge. No one was really talking, everyone was kind of like, what do we do now?”
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This is happening more frequently and there should be an investigation
I now of the problems and figuring out what the problem is, the hostin
I don't know if it's just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering
Paul Blankenship · Top Commenter · School of Hard Knocks Mr. Shelton