CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Pilot Magazine today CLICK HERE

Roads Make Poor Runways . . .

PUBLISHED: 13:39 24 June 2011 | UPDATED: 14:06 10 October 2012

It could only happen in California. An incident that would stretch credibility in a movie...

It could only happen in California. In an incident that would stretch credibility in a movie, the Cessna 402 making a forced landing on a road half a mile short of Van Nuys airport wiped both (empty) main, wing tip tanks off on the fronts of a pair of school buses that were approaching an intersection in opposite directions.

One bus driver and child were slightly hurt, the other driver and the remaining total of 45 passengers were uninjured. The pilot, who had not refuelled on a turn around after an earlier, precautionary landing, was not hurt either.

Also uninjured was the pilot of a Mooney M20F, who crashed on take off from the road he had earlier made a precautionary landing on. Fearing engine damage when a cylinder head temperature gauge peaked, he had brought the aircraft down safely.

A mechanic established that the gauge had been showing a false reading and the pilot had obtained a ferry permit to allow him to recover the aircraft. He had examined the roadway before deciding it would be safe to fly off, and traffic had been halted. The aeroplane struck a signpost during its take off roll.

In a separate incident, in Georgia, a Beech Sundowner struck a fence, yawed through 180 degrees and ended up in a rubbish pile after its pilot had elected to fly out of an 800 foot pasture. He was happy to make this attempt despite damage including a large dent, and tears in the leading edge skin and broken landing light covers all incurred in a previous accident.

Newsletter Sign Up

Pilot weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most Read


Subscribe or buy Pilot Magazine