Two Walk Away From Ditching In River
At 20 years old, Benjamin Sharp, of Rolling Hill, Calif., already has 600 hours of flight time. So when the engine quit in the Piper Cherokee he was flying on Friday afternoon, all that training kicked in. "We popped out of the clouds and I looked around, checking my options," Sharp told the Curry Coastal Pilot. "It was an automatic process. It was instinctual. We were in a ravine with no place to land. The water was the only option." He told his passenger, 19-year-old Adam Castle, to open the door before they touched down in the North Fork of the Chetco River. Once afloat, the two climbed out across the wing to a nearby gravel bar, then found a house and called 911. Castle, who had flown with his friend many times, told the Coastal Pilot, "I don't know how he saw the river, but I'm glad he did. I trusted him completely."