Plane hits and kills man on South Carolina beach

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The Independent US

A single-engine plane with oil on its windshield struck and killed a man on a Hilton Head beach Monday afternoon as the pilot was attempting to make an emergency landing, authorities said.

The man was walking or jogging along Palmetto Dunes when the Experimental Lancair IV-P plane hit him, said Hilton Head Island fire and rescue spokeswoman Joheida Fister.

The plane started leaking oil at about 13,000 feet (3,900 meters) and tried originally to make it to Hilton Head Airport, Fister said. The oil on the windshield blocked the pilot's vision and he told authorities the propeller came off the plane. When he tried to land on the beach near the Hilton Head Marriott Resort and Spa, the plane hit the beachgoer and came to rest a little farther down the beach, she said.

"I would have to say it's pretty unusual," Fister said.

The names of the man killed, pilot and passenger on the plane were not released.

The plane left Orlando at 4:45 p.m. and was headed for Virginia, Fister said. The plane has a turbine engine and can fly up to 370 mph (595 kph), according to the Lancair Web site.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were investigating, Fister said. A call late Monday to an FAA spokeswoman was not immediately returned.