Harrison Ford plane crash: NTSB removes airplane from golf course

VENICE, Calif. (KABC) -- National Transportation Safety Board investigators on Friday removed the plane crashed by Harrison Ford from a Venice golf course.

Crews dismantled the vintage aircraft and hoisted the parts onto a truck. The plane will be taken to a local hanger, where investigators will examine the aircraft, including its engine and records, officials said.

Ford lost engine power shortly after takeoff from Santa Monica Municipal Airport Thursday afternoon and crashed the airplane at Penmar Golf Course in Venice.

"When you take off from an airport and you need to return to that airport or you need to land an aircraft, you have to pick the best spots that there are and this was apparently the best spot," NTSB investigator Patrick Jones said.

PHOTOS: Harrison Ford injured in Venice plane crash

At a news conference Friday, Jones said Ford has not spoken with NTSB investigators yet about the crash.

Jones said that many factors could have led to the engine failure. So far, investigators have not found any indication of bad fuel and will not jump to any conclusions until they gather all the evidence.

A preliminary report is expected to take two weeks to a month, Jones said, and a final report will likely take about a year.

Jones urged witnesses to upload any video related to the crash on the agency's website, www.ntsb.gov.

Following the crash, the 72-year-old actor was transported to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in fair to moderate condition. In a statement, Ford's publicist said the actor's injuries are non life-threatening, and he is expected to make a full recovery.

A group of golfers who witnessed the crash helped Ford get out of the plane before paramedics arrived on scene.

VIDEO: Doctor describes pulling Harrison Ford out of wrecked plane

Ford took off at 2 p.m. Thursday from Santa Monica Municipal Airport. About 20 minutes later, he told the airport tower that he had engine failure and was making an immediate return, according to a recording posted by LiveATC.net.

AUDIO: Harrison Ford reports engine failure to air traffic control

The plane had been flying at about 3,000 feet and hit a tree on the way down, according to witnesses and officials.

Ford had a cut to his forehead and scraped arms, but it wasn't clear what internal injuries he may have had, Los Angeles Assistant Fire Chief Patrick Butler said.

"He wasn't a bloody mess. He was alert. He had good vitals," Butler said

The plane, a yellow 1942 Ryan Aeronautical ST3KR with stars on its wings, had damage mostly confined to the front.

The actor, known for "Blade Runner" and the "Indiana Jones" franchise, is known as an aviation enthusiast.

VIDEO: Harrison Ford's flight history filled with rescues, crashes

Ford got his pilot's license in the 1990s and has made headlines with his flying, though he had never been significantly injured. In 2001, he rescued a missing Boy Scout with his helicopter. Nearly a year before, he rescued an ailing mountain climber in Wyoming.

In 2000, a gust of wind sent a six-seat plane Ford was piloting off a runway in Lincoln, Nebraska. He and his passenger were not injured.

PHOTOS: Harrison Ford through the years

The Associated Press and ABC News contributed to this report.

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