Pair walk away after single-engine plane crash in Mukilteo

By Paul Archipley | May 02, 2017
Photo by: Paul Archipley A single engine Piper Cherokee rests against the curb on Harbour Pointe Boulevard South on Tuesday after its engine quit and the pilot tried to land on the street.

An Oregon man and his passenger walked away from a plane crash in Mukilteo Tuesday, counting their blessings.

The 30-year-old pilot told investigators he was taking off in his single-engine Piper Cherokee from Paine Field at about 3:30 p.m. and reached about 500 feet altitude when the engine quit.

According to Mukilteo Police spokesman Myron Travis, the pilot tried unsuccessfully to restart the engine, so he spotted Harbour Pointe Boulevard Southwest where he thought it was clear enough of traffic to try to set the plane down.

However, while descending, the plane clipped power lines and a traffic signal at the intersection of Mukilteo Speedway and Harbour Pointe Boulevard. That ruptured a fuel tank, causing burning fuel to rain down on cars below.

At least two vehicles were damaged. A bystander who reported minor injuries was treated at the scene and released.

The right side landing gear also collapsed, Travis said, causing the plane to skid to a stop in front of the Extended Stay America Hotel on HP Boulevard.

Although shaken, the pilot did not report any injuries. His male passenger reported minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital.

The pilot declined to talk about the crash. The plane is owned by Klamath Aviation in Klamath Falls, Oregon.

While the two aviators were lucky, not so for thousands of motorists. Streets were blocked off by police and clogged in all directions, causing massive backups around the scene of the accident.

In addition, some 9,000 customers lost power for about an hour due to the clipped power line.

For a video of the crash courtesy of Guanting Li, click here.


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