A Plane in Peril’s Pilot Tries to Land on an LA Freeway During Lunchtime Traffic – Opinion


A vehicle larger than your typical smart car made Southern California traffic worse on Tuesday.


Andrew Cho flew a Piper PA-32 with one engine toward Corona Municipal Airport at just after noon.


However, something was terribly wrong.


California Highway Patrol Capt. Levi Miller explained the situation to KTLA. Levi Miller, there was “possible engine failure [upon] final descent…”


The plane lost power.


In jeopardy above Riverside County’s 91 Freeway, Andrew decided to try and join the lunchtime traffic crowd. Andrew, along with a passenger, took the eastbound route near Lincoln Avenue.


Driver Armando Ramirez, meanwhile was traveling from Santa Ana to see his family.




Andrew negotiated his way between speeding vehicles and somehow managed to insert himself into a sufficient space — mostly.


His plane clipped the back of Armando’s pickup.


A ball of flame shot out from all directions when the plane touched down. The plane skidded and turned. The plane spun to its right and flew over the adjacent entrance ramp’s merging lane. The aircraft hit the wall and exploded again.


Miraculously the imperiled couple was able to flee.


The pilot recalled the experience to LA’s Channel 5:



“It felt like a hard bump. The sensation is difficult to describe. We were four to five feet in the air when the plane stalled completely and fell to the ground.”



No one was injured seriously in the accident or by any of its surrounding vehicles.


This feat was captured on film by the car ahead.


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A second angle was captured on video. Andrew seamlessly merges in traffic.


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The plane eventually got engulfed.


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Here’s how it looked in the end:


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Inside Edition reports Armando could have been hit by a taillight that has gone out.


Andrew claims that his training was what saved the day.



“Your training kicks in, and you do the right thing. As long as you don’t panic, you get the best outcome.”



More on KTLA



The 91 Freeway Eastbound Lanes were shut down for several hours while authorities investigate the accident and remove the debris.



Federal Aviation Association released a statement.



Around 12:30 p.m. local, an unidentified small plane landed near Interstate 15 in Corona. Two persons were aboard. FAA investigators will be investigating. It does not track down individuals who are involved in accidents and incidents involving planes.



To Capt. Miller:



“[We’re] very fortunate today that the traffic was light, and the pilot appears to have made some good landing navigation that avoided what could have been a very bad tragedy.”



He could repeat that sentence again.


-ALEX

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