Pembroke Pines

Family IDs Pilot in Banner Plane Crash at North Perry Airport in Pembroke Pines

Footage showed the wreckage of the yellow plane on a grassy area at the airport

NBC Universal, Inc.

A pilot was hospitalized after his small banner plane crashed at North Perry Airport in Pembroke Pines Thursday.

Footage showed the wreckage of the yellow Piper PA-25 plane on a grassy area at the airport after it crashed around noon.

Fire rescue crews responded and worked to free the pilot from the cockpit. After several minutes, the pilot was freed and placed on a stretcher before being taken away by an ambulance.

Pembroke Pines Fire Rescue officials said the pilot was stable but suffered significant injuries. He was taken to Memorial Regional Hospital for treatment. No other injuries were reported.

The pilot has been identified by family as Assem Ashat. They said he has damage to his vertebra and an MRI will provide more answers on his injuries. 

 “He’s a very experienced pilot,” said Bob Benyo, the owner of Aerial Banners Inc. 

His boss said he worked for the company for more than a year and has over a thousand hours of banner flying time. 

The call reveals the immediate response from the Pembroke Pines Fire and Police Rescue officials after the yellow Piper plane went down on May 25th, 2023.

NBC6's helicopter pilot said he saw the plane come crashing down.

"It was quick. I looked up and he is falling out of the sky," Vance Harvey said. "We get a lot of aircraft obviously, every day, so it’s not even common for me to look at any aircraft, but it just happened to catch my eye, the yellow falling from the sky."

National Transportation Safety Board officials said they've opened an investigation into the crash.

The crash comes just over a week after another banner plane from North Perry Airport crashed on a Hollywood roadway, killing the pilot. That banner plane was operated by Aerial Banners Inc., the same company as the plane from Thursday's crash.

"It's a very tough situation," Benyo told NBC6. "We're doing our own investigation along with the NTSB and FAA, like we always do"

He added that "there doesn't seem to be" any correlation between the two crashes.

Check back with NBC6 for updates.

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