Submited by Engineer Yellen, San Bernardino City FD
“Today, I was working my first shift back at our Central station with my new crew.Â We ran a call for an in-flight emergency with malfunctioning landing gear.Â Turns out that this gentleman had thousands of hours of flight time and was Bob Hope’s personal pilot.Â I give him kudos for an incredible landing that we got to witness while doing the ARFF stand-by”.
Here is some additional info from the official press release:
A pilot and one passenger were attempting to fly a single engine Cessna aircraft from the San Diego area to Long Beach when the pilot discovered that he was unable to lower the planeâ€™s landing gear. After attempting numerous in-flight emergency procedures over the French Valley area in Riverside County, the pilot chose San Bernardino International Airport as a favorable location to attempt an emergency landing.
San Bernardino Fire Departments units specially trained in aircraft rescue and firefighting procedures stood by as the plane slid approximately 125 feet coming to rest in a field adjacent to the runway. Both pilot and one passenger were unharmed even though the plane received heavy damage.