HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (AP) – A small plane towing a banner crashed in the ocean during a lifeguard competition that turned into a real-life rescue along Southern California’s popular Huntington Beach.

A Coast Guard spokesperson says the pilot was rescued after the plane crashed about 30 yards from shore on Friday.

No one else was aboard.

Witnesses said junior lifeguard competitors and professional lifeguards alike rushed toward the aircraft moments after it hit the water.

The crash occurred during events for the 2022 California Surf Lifesaving Association Junior Lifeguard Championship.

A spokesperson for the city of Huntington Beach said the pilot was taken to the hospital with bumps and bruises out of precaution.