Plane lands on Interstate 8 freeway in El Cajon

Posted at 11:28 AM, Oct 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-20 10:03:56-04

EL CAJON, Calif. (KGTV) - A plane made an emergency landing Friday on westbound Interstate 8, according to the California Highway Patrol.

A 36-year-old student pilot and 25-year-old instructor from California Flight Academy were above El Cajon and had engine trouble about 11:15 a.m., the CHP reported.

According to SDSUBaseball's twitter page, the instructor is Ryan Muno, a former Aztec baseball star.

Both men were trying to land at Gillespie Field but were forced to touch down on the freeway. The instructor took over the controls and landed safely in lanes near Second Ave.

"The instructor took over the controls of the plane. He stated he knew they weren’t going to make it to the airport, so his next course of action was to take it down the interstate," Officer Travis Gallows with CHP El Cajon said.

Muno able to land the plane on the fast lane on I-8 Westbound, miraculously missing power lines and overhead freeway sign.

10News spoke to Jim Andersen, who was driving a few cars behind the plane when it landed. When he passed by, he saw that the two aviators looked shaken up.

"The two gentlemen were talking to each other. They looked like they were catching their breath because they had just come to a stop," Andersen said.

Thankfully it wasn't a crash course, but a valuable lesson on emergency landings. 

“For them to make that landing, and have nobody else involved in it, it’s pretty much a miracle,” Officer Gallows said. 

RELATED: Small plane lands on I-15, closing off-ramp / Plane lands on SR-67

No cars were hit and no one was injured. The plane, a Piper aircraft based in El Cajon, remained intact.

The pilot and instructor pushed the plane to the right shoulder.

Officers shut down the Mollison Ave. off-ramp of westbound I-8 due to the plane emergency. 



CHP Officer Jim Bettencourt said the CHP would be in contact with the National Transportation Safety Board to determine the best way to remove the plane.

"Try not to stop and slow down," Bettencourt recommended to drivers in the area.