Imagine you’re cruising down the freeway minding your own business, when all of a sudden a freakin’ plane appears out of nowhere and lands directly in front of you.
Well, for drivers on this particular road, that became a reality when the aircraft (which had a student pilot on board at the time) had to make an emergency descent after experiencing engine issues.
The New York Post reported that the landing took place in the westbound lanes of Interstate 8 in El Cajon on Friday morning and if you happened to be driving that way and didn’t see anything, you missed a real treat in calm flying under pressure.
It’s probably important to point out at this stage that thankfully no one was hurt during the incident.
Onboard the single-engine Piper was a 25-year-old pilot and a 36-year-old student and boy did they get the lesson of a lifetime.
According to the California Highway Patrol, it was the instructor who landed the plane. I should think so! I mean it’s probably a bit harsh to turn to your student and say “the engine is failing, we need to do an emergency landing, GO“. It’d put me off piloting for life.
The plane itself was landed safely, smoothly gliding into a patch of space that had fortunately been vacated by other drivers.
Once the two pilots found the safety of the tarmac and came to a complete stop, they pushed the plane to the hard shoulder to avoid causing a monster traffic jam.
Of course, the aircraft was never meant to end up on the hard shoulder of the freeway, but certain measures must be taken when faced with a situation like this.
Fortunately there was a road to land it on in the first place. Things could have been a lot more complicated had they been flying over water or in the middle of nowhere.
ABC News reported that a California Highway Patrol Officer called Travis Garrow said “They knew they weren’t going to make it to the airport. So the next course of action was to try and put it down on the Interstate”.
Check out the full clip below:
(Video Credit: ABC 10 News)