Cirrus Chute Deployed For Fourth Save
The pilot and passenger in a Cirrus SR22 escaped injury on Sunday afternoon when they activated their ballistic chute and ... arrived ... in a walnut tree near Stockton, Calif. The pilot, William Graham, 65, and his wife, Barbara, 64, were en route to San Diego from Redding. Preliminary reports say the aircraft encountered turbulence at about 14,000 feet and entered a spin. Graham turned off the engine and deployed the chute. "The plane was intact," local fire chief Vic Solari told The Record. "There was a huge, orange-and-white parachute attached to the plane. ... It's just unreal. ... I was just amazed." William Graham is a certified flight instructor who has been flying for 25 years, the Duluth (Minn.) News Tribune reported yesterday. Graham told authorities he was returning from a seminar in Redding where he had taught fellow aviators how to use Cirrus' parachute system in the event of an emergency. This was the fourth time a Cirrus parachute system has been successfully deployed in a situation deemed by the pilot as an emergency, and nine people have walked away from those landings. A flight instructor from Duluth, Byron Oyster, remains hospitalized after the Sept. 10 crash of an SR22 in Park Falls, Wis. Gerald Miller, 60, of Sheboygan, Wis., died in that crash, in which the chute was not deployed.