Plane out of Lowcountry crashes near Sumter

SUMTER, S.C. (WCIV/AP) -- A small, private plane out of Bamberg County crashed in Sumter and the pilot was airlifted to a Columbia hospital.{}According to Sumter EMS officials, the pilot was conscious and alert when they reached him around 5:15 p.m. Sunday, but he was taken to Columbia by medical helicopter as a precaution.{}Airport officials said the man was flying a Zenith 601 and touched down short of the runway, so the plane flipped.{}Officials said the pilot took off out of Broxton Bridge Plantation near Bamberg.Sumter County Sheriff Anthony Dennis told the Associated Press the single-engine plane had taken off in Colleton County around midday Sunday to fly to Sumter. Officials began looking for the man when the aircraft did not arrive. According to the Associated Press, it took several hours to locate the plane about a quarter-mile east of the airport. The 76-year-old man was trapped in the overturned aircraft. He was taken to Palmetto Health Richland hospital for treatment. His name has not been released and there was no word on his condition. Dennis told the AP he doesn't know if the pilot had a medical problem or there was a mechanical problem with the aircraft. The pilot was the only person in the plane.