Harrison Ford Plane Crash: New Details Revealed in NTSB Report

Ford crashed his single-engine, World War II-era plane onto a golf course

ByABC News
March 11, 2015, 1:32 PM

— -- A newly-released report on the plane crash that landed “Indiana Jones” star Harrison Ford in the hospital has shed light on the critical decisions Ford made as his single-engine, World War II-era plane began to fail.

A preliminary report from the National Transportation and Safety Board states that Ford, 72, “initiated a left turn towards the airport,” just seconds after suffering engine problems during a flight last Thursday.

That decision to veer left placed the plane over a nearly-empty golf course in Santa Monica, California, where Ford crash-landed the aircraft. A right turn would have put Ford’s plane directly over homes.

“Your biggest problem is landing somewhere where you’re not going to hit something,” said ABC News’ aviation consultant John Nance. “He did that very well, landing on a golf course.”

Ford was hospitalized with what the NTSB report calls “serious injuries.” No bystanders were injured.

The NTSB report also says that Ford’s airplane, “struck the top of a tall tree prior to impacting the ground,” sustaining, “substantial damage to both wings and the fuselage.”

Ford reported engine trouble shortly after taking off from Santa Monica Municipal Airport and asked for an immediate return, National Transportation Safety Board investigator Patrick Jones said on the day of the crash. The tower then reported that his aircraft came up short of the runway, according to air traffic controller transmissions from LiveATC.net.

The movie star’s wife, Calista Flockhart, has been spotted visiting her husband at the hospital. His son Ben also shared updates about his father’s status online over the weekend, thanking fans for their concern and saying Ford has “the best care possible.” The tweet was later deleted.

Ford’s publicist, Ina Treciokas, has described the actor's injuries as non-life-threatening.