Saturday June 23, 2012

BOSTON (AP) -- Pilot skill, a detailed flight plan and a life raft are being credited with saving the life of a man whose small plane crashed off the Massachusetts coast on Friday evening.

The pilot was working to spot tuna for a nearby fishing vessel when his aircraft went down about 12 nautical miles east of Gloucester, U.S. Coast Guard said.

The man used the plane's life raft to stay afloat until he was located by a Coast Guard plane. He then was recovered by the fishing vessel, which carried him to shore.

The pilot was uninjured, Coast Guard spokesman Ross Ruddell said.

"It was absolutely amazing that he was able to coast the plane into the water and that the plane didn't explode," Ruddell said.

The pilot's flight plan allowed rescuers to quickly pinpoint his location, Ruddell said.

The cause of the crash is under investigation. The plane remained in the water on Saturday.