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Small Plane Emergency Landing Threads the Needle Between Parked Jumbos

When you first see it, you won’t believe it missed the behemoths.

At first in the video, you don’t see the small plane approaching. All you see is a row of commercial jets parked nose to tail with precious little space between them. Then, you see a shadow, and it’s moving fast, from the top right to the lower left on the screen. There is a fence near and in front of the viewer, and there’s a stand of evergreen trees to the left.

When the small plane, a Piper Cherokee of some variety, appears, it’s still airborne and doesn’t touch down until just before it has to thread the needle between the nose and tail of two towering airliners—presumably, there’s no one aboard any of the big jets. And the small plane is smoking, so even if it does miss the airliners, and that’s a big “if,” it still has to get stopped somehow in the impossibly short distance between touchdown and the fences, trees and buildings ahead of it.

The big question of course is, “What about the pilot and passengers of the small plane?” The good news, according to reports in British papers, where the crash took place, there were no serious injuries. Phew. The airport, Cotswold, is located about 80 miles northwest of London.

As to how the plane got in that position, we have no earthly (or heavenly, for that matter) idea! Though we are certain the authorities will get to the bottom of it.


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