Man With ZERO Flight Experience Lands Plane Safely in Florida After Pilot Has Medical Emergency

At lunch today with colleagues the conversation of flying a plane came up. There is an airport near this office in Carlsbad, California. You could see the planes coming in very low and it was a cool sight to see. A colleague of mine shared a story of how her brothers ex-boyfriend from high school became a pilot and asked her and her sister if they’d like to go up in a flight. Ecstatic to the request, she said yes even though her sister wasn’t too thrilled with the idea.

She ended up flying the plane all the way to the Coronado bridge and turned it around to fly it back north. She shared the story with excitement and enthusiasm! What a cool experience?

This leads us into today’s story, proving that anything is possible.

It all started in West Palm Beach, Florida. —

A passenger with zero flight experience was instructed to and safely landed a private plane at Palm Beach International Airport Tuesday afternoon after the pilot suffered a medical emergency in the air.

“I’ve got a serious situation here,” the passenger can be heard telling Air Traffic Control in Fort Pierce. “My pilot has gone incoherent. I have no idea how to fly the airplane.”

“Roger. What’s your position?” Air Traffic Control responded.

“I have no idea,” the passenger said. “I can see the coast of Florida in front of me. And I have no idea.”

“Maintain wings level and just try to follow the coast, either north or southbound,” Air Traffic Control told him. “We’re trying to locate you.”

Four minutes went by as the passenger tries to figure out what to do.

“Have you guys located me yet?” he asked. “I can’t even get my nav screen to turn on. It has all the information on it. You guys have any ideas on that?”

Eventually, the Air Traffic Control locates the plane on their radar. It was flying just off the coast of Boca Raton, a city near West Palm Beach, Fla.

That’s when Air Traffic Control at PBIA took over and thankfully they were able to talk the passenger through a very safe landing.

“You just witnessed a couple of passengers land that plane,” Air Traffic Control said over the radio.

Another voice responded.

“Did you say the passengers landed the plane?” he asked.

“That’s correct.”

“Oh, my gosh. Great job.”

Aviation expert John Nance said it goes well beyond just a great job. It’s quite surprising truly.

“This is the first time I’ve ever heard of one of these being landed by somebody that has no aeronautical experience,” Nance said.

Nance said he’s heard of passengers landing planes before, but not a plane as large and as complicated as the Cessna Caravan.

“The person on the airplane who had no aeronautical experience listened very carefully and obviously followed instructions with great calm,” Nance said. “That’s what made the difference.”

‘More complicated than a trainer aircraft’: Private pilot impressed by video of passenger landing plane at PBIA

The name of the passenger has not been released nor has the name or condition of the pilot.

The Federal Aviation Administration said it believes he suffered a medical emergency.

The FAA is investigating this currently.

‘Absolutely incredible’: Pilot reacts to passenger with no flight experience landing plane at PBIA


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