Murphy Gets A Break -- Sort Of
We're not sure if Murphy's Law applies here or not ... something went wrong, but not as wrong as it might have. On the one hand, pilot Denis Murphy, 49, of Florida, has ditched twice in just over a year. On the other hand, he survived both times with only minor injuries. Last Thursday, charter pilot Murphy was flying alone from the Bahamas to Florida in a twin-engine Piper Navajo Chieftain when he reported engine problems and ditched about 11 miles off Fort Lauderdale. Murphy donned a life jacket and was rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter. In February 2003, Murphy was flying alone from Havana to Miami when he ditched a twin Cessna 402B, and was rescued 20 minutes later by a passing fishing boat. The NTSB recovered last year's wreck, and investigators said they found no evidence of a reported in-flight fire, and no evidence of a pre-impact malfunction or failure in either engine. The probable cause of that crash was found to be "loss of power to both engines for undetermined reasons." In its preliminary report on last week's crash, the FAA said the pilot declared an emergency due to low manifold pressure in the No. 2 engine. "Controller provided constant data regarding nearest airports. Pilot ditched aircraft," the FAA reported.