Pilot Lands Cessna On Highway 75
An emergency landing happens on a busy Tulsa highway. The pilot of a small Cessna didn't have many options as his plane developed engine trouble. News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports he ended up landing the plane on Highway 75 near 56th Street North.
It's amazing that the pilot or any drivers on the ground weren't hurt when the plane rolled to a stop on one of the busiest highways in the area.
The pilot of the small four seat Cessna, Allen Braden, was on his way from Emporia, Kansas, back home to Houston to celebrate his wife's birthday. It turns out, he can also celebrate being safe and sound.
"God knows what she's going to say when she finds out where I'm at," said Allen Braden.
Braden ended up on Highway 75 just north of Tulsa. At 5,000 feet, he knew he was in trouble. His plane lost oil pressure and he radioed Tulsa International Airport.
"Told me to hold my altitude and there was no way I was holding my altitude," said Allen Braden.
"Was not going to be able to make the airport, had lost all power at that point. So was really forced to find a place to land," said Tulsa Fire Captain Larry Bowles.
That ended up being the southbound lanes of Highway 75. Braden didn't have another option, so he put the plane down on the highway.
"They told me about the power lines crossing the highway so I got low. Which probably put me above a couple of cars, probably scared the hell out of them," said Allen Braden.
Braden's been flying for 46 years in everything from Marine Corps' attack planes to small Cessnas. Although this wasn't the most ideal situation for a landing, Highway 75 with its two lanes southbound and wide shoulder is about as good as Braden could hope for.
Despite clipping a wing on a road sign, the landing went well. Braden wasn't hurt, and no cars on the highway were hit.
"His piloting experience hours in the cockpit, may have had a major role in this turning out as well as it did," said Tulsa Fire Captain Larry Bowles.
"I was coming down somewhere, and it was just that this highway was there and ya'll couldn't have put it in a better spot for me," said Allen Braden.
The pilot says this isn't the first time he's had to make an emergency landing in his 46 years of flying. He says 22 years ago, he had to land on a neighborhood street in the Houston area.