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Air ambulance aborts takeoff at Hernando airport; no one injured

Published Feb. 15, 2012

BROOKSVILLE — The Learjet was about 2,000 feet down the Hernando County Airport runway when, for some reason, it pulled hard to the left. The pilot aborted the takeoff as the plane sped off the strip. Just south of the runway, the jet's nose wheel folded under and the aircraft stopped.

No one was injured and no fuel was spilled in the incident, which occurred late Monday evening, officials said. The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating.

The plane belonged to Jet ICU Air Ambulance Service. A company representative declined to say what he believed caused the mishap or if the aircraft was transporting anything or anyone when the wreck occurred.

Tuesday morning, under FAA supervision, a crane lifted the nose of the plane, and a heavy-duty boat trailer was used to tow the aircraft to a hangar for repairs. It was unclear how much damage the plane sustained.

"We get about one of these a year," said Rob Mills, airport supervisor. "Hopefully this is ours for 2012."

John Woodrow Cox can be reached at jcox@tampabay.com or (352) 848-1432.