The single-engine vintage plane went down just before 2:30 p.m. on the Penmar Golf Course off Rose Avenue in Venice (map), according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.
Fire officials would not confirm the pilot's identity. However, a source at the scene confirmed to FOX 11 that Ford, 72, was the pilot in the crash. The official spoke only condition of anonymity because of privacy restrictions. He was the only person aboard.
Ford was taken to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in "fair to moderate condition," a Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman said. He was "alert and conscious" while being transported to the hospital.
Nobody on the ground was hurt, but people rushed the scene and started helping Ford.
Ford's son, Ben, posted on Twitter following the crash:
At the hospital. Dad is ok. Battered, but ok! He is every bit the man you would think he is. He is an incredibly strong man.
— Chef Ben Ford (@ChefBenFord) March 6, 2015
Thank you all for your thoughts and good vibes for my dad.— Chef Ben Ford (@ChefBenFord) March 6, 2015
"Harrison was flying a WW2 vintage plane today which had engine trouble upon take off. He had no other choice but to make an emergency landing, which he did safely," Ford's publicist said in an official statement. "He was banged up and is in the hospital receiving medical care. The injuries sustained are not life threatening, and he is expected to make a full recovery."
Jeff Kuprycz was golfing when he saw the plane taking off.
"Immediately you could see the engine started to sputter and just cut out, and he banked sharply to the left," he said. "He ended up crashing around the eighth hole," he told the Associated Press.
Kuprycz said the plane was about 200 feet overhead when it plunged to the ground.
"There was no explosion or anything. It just sounded like a car hitting the ground or a tree or something. Like that one little bang, and that was it," Kuprycz said.
A representative with the Federal Aviation Administration was present at the scene and coordinating with the National Transportation Safety Board to investigate the crash.
In air traffic control audio obtained by TMZ, Ford reports engine failure and requests an emergency return to the airport.
The "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" actor is known for being an aviation enthusiast, piloting both planes and helicopters, and often flies out of the Santa Monica Airport. The golf course is just west of a runway there.
Ford got his pilot's license in the late 1980s and has served as a spokesman to various airline associations, according to the Associated Press. In 2009, he stepped down as chairman of a youth program for the Experimental Aircraft Association.
Ford has been credited in providing emergency helicopter services for local authorities, including one instance in 2000 ?where he rescued a sick hiker from a mountain in Idaho?. His flying also made headlines a year later when he rescued a missing Boy Scout on his helicopter.
He has also volunteered his services during forest-fire season, when rescue helicopter are busy fighting blazes.
He's been married since 2010 to "Ally McBeal" actress Calista Flockhart.
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