Two Escape Injury When Plane Flips During Emergency Landing

TOPPLED, BUT SAFE: Aircraft flipped during emergency landing on Highway 166. Pilot and passenger walked away.

Two people miraculously escaped injury today when their small plane lost power to its engine then flipped over during an emergency landing east of Santa Maria. At around 10:30 a.m., the pilot of the single-engine, white and burgundy aircraft radioed the San Luis Obispo Airport to report the plane was experiencing engine trouble. The pilot planned to try and land on Highway 166. The airport tower then lost contact with the plane, and emergency crews from Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and state agencies were quickly scrambled and dispatched. They found the plane on its roof near the 40-mile marker of Highway 166 around the Twitchell Reservoir.

UPDATE: Calfire dispatch says the pilot and passenger have declined medical treatment. Calfire has cleared the scene at Highway 166, and SLO Sheriff’s Office has custody of the plane pending an FAA investigation.


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