RAINBOW CITY, Ala. (WBRC) - A man whose plane made an unscheduled landing at a tree line, walked away without a scratch.
It happened in the Riddles Bend Community in Rainbow City.
Firefighters say the pilot told them he developed engine trouble in his Bellanca 8KCAB single engine plane.
“The pilot told us that he was having engine trouble and was trying to make it back to a private field,” said Rainbow City Fire Captain Robert McKary. “He knew that was the biggest option that he had close by, so he came in and touched down.”
He told firefighters the plane's landing gear slid in some wet grass, and he wasn't able to stop it. The plane came to rest against two trees on a treeline, on the Gibbs Farm.
“He did a really good job. He was, like I said, he pointed right in between the trees, so the impact would be on the wings and not the fuselage,” McKary said.
McKary says the pilot had already turned off the plane's ignition and climbed out of the plane when they arrived, and he seemed calm.
Federal investigators have already been on the scene to conduct their investigation into what pilots and other aviation experts call a “hard landing.”