Icon Incident Blown Out of Proportion

No injuries after A5 takes on water near Sanibel Island.

Investigations are taking place into an incident from last week that resulted in headlines at local news outlets in Florida. A local NBC news station reported that an Icon A5 had to make an emergency landing, which resulted in an emergency rescue of the sole person on board. Several stations reported that the airplane in question sunk.

However, it appears that the news blew the incident completely out of proportion. Icon Aircraft said the A5 in question “sustained some hull damage while on the water near Sanibel Island in Florida last week. A customer was maneuvering the Icon seaplane on the water at the time and it is unclear how the boat hull was damaged.” The damage was light enough that Icon will be able to repair the hull. The pilot suffered no injuries and no fuel leaked into the water.

The airplane from last week’s incident is registered to Jet Mist Holdings out of Lyme, Connecticut. Video images show the airplane resting in shallow water. One possible reason for the unnecessary focus on the incident might be that the damaged airplane was of the same type that baseball hall-of-famer Roy Halladay recently crashed and died in off the Florida coast. It was later discovered that Halladay had drugs in his system that could have contributed to the accident.

Icon has delivered more than 25 A5s so far and the company is ramping up production to satisfy orders from hundreds of deposit holders. Icon’s composite factory is up and running in Mexico and the airplanes now being delivered are made from the company’s own composite. Whether the quality of the material played a part or whether this was a simple mistake on the pilot’s part remains to be seen.