A major catastrophe was narrowly averted at Stonewall Stud in South Auckland on Thursday afternoon when a small plane crash-landed on the property, the base of leading trainer Steve Telfer.
In a huge stroke of luck, no horses or humans were harmed in the incident, and only minor damage was done to the property.
"It's taken out a couple of wire fences and dragged them through the paddock," Stonewall Stud's co-owner Jill Stockman said.
A number of mares with young foals were spooked by the incident, but all escaped unharmed.
"Luckily, they were one paddock over," Stockman said. "It's landed in our hay paddock, which hasn't been done yet."
Stockman didn't see the landing, but was quickly on the scene after hearing the nearby horses charging around their paddock.
"There was a big noise, but I didn't worry too much about.
"Then the mares and foals started tearing around the paddock and snorting, so I thought I better go and see what was upsetting them."
Much to her surprise, a small plane was sitting in the middle of the paddock.
"Two guys got out and walked away from it and then the police, fire and ambulances all rolled up soon after."
Stonewall Stud is in the flight path of nearby Ardmore Aerodrome and Stockman believes that is where the plane came from.
"I believe he was taking off and something's gone wrong, but I don't know too much else about it.
"The Civil Aviation Authority are here today investigating."
- NZ Harness News