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He got a crash landing for Christmas
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 23 December 2007
It may not have been what he wanted for Christmas but a crash landing is what he got in a paddock on Obi Obi Road, Mapleton.

Gin Gin pilot, Michael McMahon was flying his Beechcraft single engine plane from Archerfield Airport to his home at Gin Gin on December 23rd when at about 7500 feet and a few miles west of Maleny  a mechanical problem struck the engine leaving the plane with no power.

McMahon and his two passengers went through their safety checks and braced themselves whilst McMahon made a distress call.

Seeing a lake, McMahon first thought that he would have to ditch into it but luckily he then saw a paddock that looked as if it would be suitable for a crash landing.

At first McMahon did not realise that there were two high voltage power lines near the paddock but he saw them in time to make a dash over one and under the other landing heavily but safely in the paddock.

A local resident, Tony Moran first heard what he thought was a plane in distress and ran outside to see the plane come in fast and low for a hard landing in the paddock.   It is unclear at this time how much damage has been caused to the aircraft.

McMahon said that when he has preciously flown this trip he has encountered low cloud and has had to fly under the cloud.   In that instance low cloud would have given him less time to carry out his safety procedures and hence may this landing may have ended up a lot differently.  The extra height on this occasion has allowed that little extra time to look around for a landing spot.

Emergency Services arrived at the scene to find the three occupants of the plane shaken but unhurt.   The Bureau of Air Safety will carry out an investigation into this incident.

McMahon said,  “Relatives are coming from Gin Gin to pick us up but the plane will have to stay in the paddock until it is mechanically checked.”

Last Updated ( Sunday, 23 December 2007 )
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