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Small plane crashes in water near crowded beach in Ocean City, Maryland

Ocean City, Md. -- Police in Maryland say a small plane has crashed in the water just off a beach in Ocean City. Police said on its Twitter page that the small plane made an emergency landing at around 6:19 p.m. on Tuesday. The department says the plane went down in shallow ocean waters near 21st Street.

The department says one person onboard the aircraft was evaluated by paramedics and released. CBS Baltimore reports he was identified as Trevor H. Deihl, 23, of Reedville, Virginia.

Multiple social media users posted video and photos showing the airplane crashing into the ocean.

According to the preliminary investigation, witnesses said that they were on the beach at 20th Street at about 6:15 p.m. when they saw a single-engine airplane crash into the ocean about a quarter of a mile from the shoreline.

Witnesses told officials the plane appeared to glide toward the water as it descended and then float on the surface of the ocean when it landed.

Charlotte Higdon was on the beach when the plane crashed.

"I happened to look up and I saw the plane coming right directly over top of us, and I said to my husband, 'Look at that! That's strange! It's very close,'" Higdon told CBS Baltimore. "The engine was making a sputtering noise and there was smoke coming out of the one side of it."

Higdon said that she was worried that the plane was going to come down and hit somebody's family on the beach.

"From our angle, it looked like it was coming down in the sand on top of people," she said. "We were panicking like oh goodness is that going to come down and hit somebody's family on the beach."

Personnel from the Ocean City Beach Patrol and the Ocean City Police Department immediately responded to the scene. Police spokeswoman Ashley Miller says the Maryland State Police will investigate the incident.

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