Biplane lands at Torrey Pines Golf Course

SAN DIEGO - A plane experiencing mechanical problems made an emergency landing at the Torrey Pines Golf Course Tuesday.

The report was called in just after 11:40 a.m., and dispatchers said the 1929 vintage biplane was experiencing mechanical problems, forcing it to land on the course at 11480 Torrey Pines Park Road.

10News learned the pilot, Bill Oglesby, knew what he was doing. He has more than 60,000 hours of flying time, according to the plane's owner, so he knows how to react to an emergency.

Oglesby was flying the Travel Air 400 with two tourists aboard Tuesday when the engine began "running rough." He took no chances, first circling the golf course for a good spot to land, then putting the plane down on the 4th hole of the north course.

"I watched as he just missed a tree. If he'd hit the tree, that would have been bad," said golfer Dustin Dinsmore, who added praise for the pilot's decision. "It makes sense to land there. I mean, if he was having trouble. So that's what he did. He made it safe."

Dispatchers said the plane landed safely on the fourth hole of the course about 10 minutes later.

The plane's owner told 10News the engine was "running rough" but never stopped. Travis Daniels rushed to the scene, after getting a call from his pilot about the aborted flight. He said the plane will have to be dismantled to get it back to its hangar for repairs.

He expects the plane to be back in the air in a week or so.

The biplane has been a fixture in the skies above San Diego for years, offering tourists a bird's-eye view of the dramatic coastline and local attractions.

Barnstorm Adventures website says it costs $289 for a 40-minute trip.

The pilot and two passengers were not injured. No one on the ground was hurt.

The passengers were given a full refund.

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