Low-flying plane in Santa Cruz may have violated sanctuary regulations

By on Wed, January 28, 2009

Aircraft are banned below 1,000 feet between Point Santa Cruz and Pescadero Point within three miles of shore, reports the Santa Cruz Sentinel.

The fixed-wing single-engine Piper came from the south, dipped down toward the water just north of Lighthouse Point, then followed the surf line and zipped up the coast about 30 feet above the cliff’s edge around 3 p.m., witnesses said. The two-tone plane then turned around and headed south along the same course before climbing higher. ...

"What we’re trying to prevent is low-flying aircraft from disturbing the marine life and seabirds," he said.

Pilots who violate the regulations can face tens of thousands of dollars in fines, though Yerena said the first violation usually results in a warning.