Cessna Citation CJ3 Ends Up in Florida Pond

** Photo: Aaron Forsman, Universal Towing**

The Universal Towing office in Port Orange, Florida, got an unusual call over the weekend. The company was asked to retrieve a Cessna Citation CJ3 business jet out of a pond adjacent to the Spruce Creek Airport in Port Orange, Florida. The pond lies at the bottom of a short grassy embankment at the end of the 4,000-foot paved runway.

FAA public affairs officer Holly Baker said in a statement that the airplane "went off the end of Runway 23 when it landed long at Spruce Creek Airport," at 11:40 a.m. on Saturday. Universal Towing's general manager Bruce Sewell told Flying that the airplane had slowly slid down the embankment and the three occupants of the airplane exited safely. An airbag system was used to lift the CJ3 out of the water.

While Sewell said there wasn't a scratch on the airframe, it will likely be a while before the jet is ready to fly again.

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Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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