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Navy plane with 9 aboard slides into Kaneohe Bay

JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                A Navy plane Monday splashed into Kaneohe Bay.
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JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM

A Navy plane Monday splashed into Kaneohe Bay.

A Navy plane overshot a runway and splashed into Kaneohe Bay on Monday, but authorities said all nine people aboard made it safely to shore with no injuries.

The Coast Guard responded, but rescue operations were quickly called off, said Petty Officer Ryan Fisher, a Coast Guard spokesperson.

“It sounds like all parties involved were rescued,” he said.

The P-8A aircraft overshot the runway at Marine Corp Base Hawaii in Kaneohe, said Marine Corps spokesperson Gunnery Sgt. Orlando Perez. He did not have further information.

A photo taken by a witness showed the plane resting just offshore, a sight reminiscent of the 2009 “Miracle on the Hudson” when a commercial aircraft piloted by Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger made an emergency landing on the New York river. All 155 people aboard survived.

The P-8A and the Airbus A320 that Sullenberger piloted are roughly the same size.

Diane Dircks and her family had just returned to the dock after rainy weather cut their pontoon boat trip short when her daughter noticed the plane in the water.

“We went running over to the end of the dock, and I took some pictures,” she said.

They then heard sirens coming from everywhere.

Dircks, who is visiting from Illinois, said her daughter keeps a pair of binoculars on her for bird- watching, so she was able to see the plane and the rescue boats arriving.

“It was unbelievable,” she said.

The Honolulu Fire Department received a 911 call for a downed aircraft shortly after 2 p.m., spokesperson Malcolm K. Medrano said in an email.

It was cloudy and rainy at the time. Visibility was about 1 mile, said Thomas Vaughan, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Honolulu.

The P-8A is often used to hunt for submarines and reconnaissance and intelligence gathering. It is manufactured by Boeing and shares many parts with the 737 commercial jet.

The plane belongs to the Skinny Dragons of Patrol Squadron 4 stationed at Whidbey Island in Washington state. Patrol squadrons were once based at Kaneohe Bay, but now they deploy to Hawaii on a rotational basis.

Marine Corps Base Hawaii houses about 9,300 military personnel and 5,100 family members.

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Associated Press writer Jennifer Sinco Kelleher contributed to this report. Dupuy reported from New York.

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