WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Pilot John Gregory was rescued after his plane crash-landed on top of a very tall fir tree in Idaho.
- According to the pilot, he attempted to crash-land his single-engine plane in an Idaho field, but the giant tree obviously got in the way.
- Rescuers arrived at the scene in disbelief with one firefighter saying, “I’ve never seen anything like this happen.”
In an attempt to crash-land his single-engine plane in an Idaho field on Monday morning, pilot John Gregory ended up on top of a giant tree, according to reports, the Associated Press reported.
After the plane lost power, Gregory tried to land his Piper Cub PA-18 on the field but a strut wing caught part of the 60-foot tall fir tree, so he ended up crash-landing on top of it, according to the McCall Fire Department.
Local television station KIVI of Boise reported that the pilot immediately called 911 to get help. He advised the dispatcher that his plane crashed and it was “hung up in trees.”
Rescue firefighters arrived including volunteer firefighter Randy Acker, owner of a tree-removal company in the area.
“My thought was, I need to get up there and see what’s going on,” Acker told the AP.
Acker cut branches on his way up the fir tree until he was just 20 feet from the top.
He made sure the plane was secured to the tree with rope webbing. He also secured Gregory in a safety line before the pilot was safely brought down to the ground, KIVI reported.
“I’ve never seen anything like this happen,” Acker said in disbelief. “Just glad I was able to help.”
The giant fir tree supported most of the plane’s weight.
“Those wings were perfectly centered over the top of the tree,” McCall Fire Capt. Brandon Swain told the AP.
The plane miraculously is still intact, with just a piece of the propeller and a wheel falling to the ground.
Gregory’s plane remained on top of the tree, as of Thursday afternoon, while officials discuss a way to get the aircraft safely to the ground.