A small, twin-engine plane was coming in to land at a Lowcountry airport when it struck a deer, according to a statement released by Colleton County Fire and Rescue.
News station WLTX reported that at around 2:40 a.m. on Wednesday, the Beechcraft Super King Air 200 was coming in to land at Lowcountry Regional Airport in Walterboro, South Carolina, when it collided with a deer on the runway.
The impact caused the front landing gear to collapse, according to fire and rescue. As a result, the nose of the plane dropped and the propellers struck the runway, damaging both the propellers and engines.
First responders arrived to find the plane disabled on the runway. Neither of the plane’s two occupants suffered any injuries, but firefighters and paramedics were on the scene for several hours.
The report does not provide any information about the condition of the deer.
Collisions between planes and deer are not unheard of. Earlier this year, a recreational pilot in Shreveport, Louisiana, was taking his wife on a day trip when they hit a deer on the return flight. The collision similarly damaged the landing gear, causing the plane to skid on the runway.
In 2022, WLTX reported that a plane landing in Florence, South Carolina, struck a deer, though the pilot was still able to taxi off the runway.
While the FAA does not track how many planes collide with deer each year, insurance company State Farm estimates 1.9 million insurance claims are filed each year for animal collisions, most with cars or trucks.
The insurance provider considers South Carolina “high risk.” The Palmetto State has the 12th highest incidence of animal-involved collision claims.