HAMPTON, P.E.I. – A pilot’s quick thinking at 2,000 feet in the air allowed for himself and two passengers to walk away from an emergency landing practically “unscathed” on Sunday.
RCMP received a call of a small private aircraft that had crashed in a farm field in Hampton at about 12:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Const. Jon Russell said officers arrived at the scene to find the plane flipped over in the field.
It had been carrying three individuals, pilot Paul Tymstra as well as a 51-year-old passenger and the passenger’s 13-year-old son who were on a sight-seeing tour.
Russell said all three appeared to escape physical injuries from the incident, although they were transported to hospital by Island EMS to get checked out.
“One of the passengers had only minor abrasions. But other than that, they walked away unscathed,” said Russell. “It looks like the training of the pilot paid off.”
Tymstra, the owner of Sea Eagle Aviation in Charlottetown, has more than 20 years experience flying.
He said the plane was at approximately 2,000 feet altitude when the engine failed.
“We saw a nice green strip and we shot for that,” said Tymstra, who has previously performed a forced landing in Ottawa and has taught the procedure to other pilots.
“I put it down on the grass and everything was fine but as it slowed down the nose wheel grabbed into the muck.”
The soft ground and weight of the plane moving forward caused it to flip over.
“That was the worst part,” said Tymstra, who added that the three were happy to be walking after the incident. “There is always an element of a little shock. We were a little pale but for the most part it was a pretty good situation considering.
“I was more concerned about them (the passengers). The last thing I want is for someone to get hurt.”
Tymstra said its unclear if the plane, a Cessna 172, can be repaired.
Volunteers with the Crapaud Fire Department also responded to the incident.
RCMP remained on the scene throughout the afternoon until Transport Canada officials could arrive.
The federal agency will be handling the investigation.
Russell said Tymstra and the passengers seemed emotionally stable following the incident.
“They were surprisingly calm and had some perspective on it…. They gave us the facts before they went to the hospital.”
The field was located just off the Trans-Canada Highway, which led to many vehicles stopping throughout the afternoon and evening to check out the scene.
Russell, who has been an RCMP officer for 10 years, said it was his first incident ever dealing with a downed aircraft.
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This is happening more frequently and there should be an investigation
I now of the problems and figuring out what the problem is, the hostin
I don't know if it's just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering
Paul Blankenship · Top Commenter · School of Hard Knocks Mr. Shelton