A small single-engine aircraft lost power and crashed on a north metro highway Tuesday morning and struck a vehicle before coming to rest.
The Piper PA-28 went down about 10:30 a.m. near the intersection of County Road 81 and W. Broadway while on approach to the Crystal Airport, Brooklyn Park police spokesman Elliot Faust said.
The 23-year-old pilot, who was the only person on the plane, unsuccessfully attempted to restart the engine and radioed the control tower that he was going to make an emergency landing, Faust said.
The plane clipped power lines before landing on the southbound lanes of County Road 81 and hitting a vehicle on the road, Brooklyn Park Fire Chief Shawn Conway said.
The pilot, whose name has not been released, suffered minor injuries but was not transported to a hospital. The lone person in the vehicle, a 32-year-old man, was taken to a hospital with noncritical injuries, Faust said.
The area is a mix of residential and commercial properties, and could have been much worse, Conway said.
"It certainly seemed he handled the situation really well," Conway said. "He went through the emergency checklist and put the plane down where he was not seriously hurt."
The plane registered to Thunderbird Aviation departed the Crystal Airport at 7:13 a.m. and was returning to the airport at the time of the crash, according to the flight tracking website FlightAware.com.
A spokesman for Thunderbird Aviation confirmed it was one of the flight school's planes, but offered no further information.
Investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) arrived on the scene by Tuesday afternoon.
About 1,100 Xcel Energy customers lost power for about an hour, but had electricity restored by 11:50 a.m., utility company spokeswoman Lacey Nygard said.
The southbound lanes of County 81 were shut down for several hours.