Two Rescued From Dangling Plane


Sometimes there’s a razor-thin line between good luck and bad and the unidentified pilot and passenger of what appears to be an ultralight had some time to think about that in South Africa on Friday. The aircraft hit a zipline over a 1,000-foot gorge near Rustenburg in the northwestern part of the country about 8:30 a.m. The line held as the aircraft became entangled in it and hung there for much of the day as authorities puzzled over a rescue. Meanwhile, inside the aircraft, the two unhurt occupants were doing nothing more than trying not to tempt physics.

“After some time, rescuers reached the aircraft and found the man and woman inside the aircraft,” search and rescue spokesman Russel Meiring told Rescue personnel equipped both patients with harnesses and began to lower them to the awaiting paramedics, 300 meters below. Once on the ground, the occupants were taken to a local hospital for a checkout but neither was hurt. “They explained to paramedics that the only thing they could do was not to move as they were scared that the aircraft would fall,” said Meiring. That included trying to call for help, which only happened when a passerby called it in sometime in the afternoon.