Police in Tenn. search for man who fell from plane

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) -- Authorities in Hamilton County are searching for a man who was thrown from an experimental aircraft while he was learning to fly from an instructor.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports that police in Collegedale and the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office on Friday were searching the ground for the man, who has not been identified.

Collegedale Municipal Airport employee Lowell Sterchi said the man was being trained by an instructor in his Zodiac 601 aircraft at about 2,500 feet when the canopy came off.

The man's seat belt was not fastened and he was thrown out from the plane over the East Brainerd and Apison areas of the county.

Sterchi said the instructor, who Sterchi would not identify, landed the plane and was not physically hurt. Sterchi said the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have been notified.

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