Pilot killed in Champaign County crash ID’d; U.S. 68 has reopened

Repairs were needed to roadway after small-plane crash, OSHP says.

The pilot of a small plane headed to Cincinnati died Friday afternoon following a crash southeast of Urbana in Champaign County.

Martin H. Beerman, 68, of Sandusky, was identified as the pilot killed in the crash reported around 2:45 p.m. that shut down part of U.S. 68 south of Hickory Grove Road as the Ohio State Highway Patrol investigated.

U.S. 68 reopened around 10 p.m. Friday night, according to a Twitter post from ODOT. The Ohio Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection Agency made repairs to the roadway, the patrol stated in a release issued Friday night.

ExplorePHOTOS: Pilot dies in airplane crash on US 68 near Urbana

Beerman was the only person aboard the single-engine Socata TBM-700 headed to Cincinnati Municipal Airport - Lunken Field from the Erie-Ottawa International Airport in Port Clinton, Ohio, said Elizabeth Cory, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman.

Beerman departed around 2 p.m. from Port Clinton, the highway patrol said.

Urbana area residents lost power after Beerman’s plane made an unplanned descent and the aircraft struck power lines. The plane then struck the east side of U.S. 68 and went over the highway “into a ditch line, through a line of trees and then actually disintegrated in a large potato field,” said Lt. Brian Aller, commander of the patrol’s Springfield Post.

Debris from the plane was scattered on both sides of the roadway and dirt and fuel covered the road.

The highway patrol is investigating the crash, and the Civil Air Patrol and National Transportation Safety Board are on the way.

The Champaign County Coroner’s Office also responded.

ExploreSpringfield victims ID’d in crash that killed 4, injured 5 near Urbana

The plane crash happened just south of the scene of an Aug. 7 deadly head-on traffic crash that killed four people from Springfield.

Earlier this week a flight instructor and student pilot force-landed a twin-engine plane several thousand feet past the runway at the Bellefontaine Regional Airport after both engines lost power during the plane’s departure.

ExplorePilots land plane after twin engines lose power leaving Bellefontaine airport

No injuries were reported after the plane hit a fence and stopped at the edge of the airport’s property, according to the highway patrol.