Los Angeles, CALIFORNIA - A small plane piloted by actor Harrison Ford has crash-landed on a golf course near the Santa Monica Municipal Airport.

Ford, 72, was hospitalized in fair to moderate condition according to Los Angeles Fire Department Assistant Chief Patrick Butler.

Authorities say the single-engine plane went down around 2:30 p.m. Thursday on the green at Penmar Golf Course in the Venice area of Los Angeles. Ford was conscious and breathing and was rescued by bystanders on the golf course and soon given medical treatment.

The course is just west of a runway. But there's no word yet on whether the plane had taken off or was trying to land.

NTSB officials are investigating, CBS Los Angeles reported.

The plane, which was yellow with stars on its wings, appeared to be a Ryan PT-22 Recruit, a vintage plane used for training during World War II.

The vintage aircraft appeared to be right-side up and largely intact after leaving gouges on the golf course fairway. The plane had just taken off and was returning to the airport after experiencing some kind of trouble. Fire officials noted that the plane appeared to have struck a tree, since some branches had been knocked onto the golf course.

The actor was the only person aboard, and nobody on the ground was hurt.

His son, Ben sent out a tweet updating fans and well-wishers.

Ford, an Academy Award-nominated actor known widely as the star of the "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" movie series, is also known as a longtime aviation enthusiast.

He owns several aircraft and has been active with the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, CBS Los Angeles reported. He is also heavily involved with the Experimental Aircraft Association. Known for piloting fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, he crashed a helicopter in the Santa Clarita area during a training flight in 1999.

Ford got his pilot's license in the late 1980s and has served as a spokesman to various airline associations. In 2009, he stepped down as chairman of a youth program for the Experimental Aircraft Association.

His flying made headlines in 2001 when he rescued a missing Boy Scout in his helicopter.

Nearly a year before, he rescued an ailing mountain climber in Jackson, Wyoming.

He has also volunteered his services during forest-fire season, when rescue helicopter are busy fighting blazes.

The actor has said his rescues "had nothing to do with heroism." "It had to do with flying a helicopter. That's all," he said.

Ford is cast to play swashbuckling space-age soldier-of-fortune Han Solo in his fourth "Star Wars" movie, set for release in December.