Plane lands on Western Cape road
Cape Town - Good training, experience and a brief gap in the morning traffic on the R43 between Worcester and Villiersdorp saved the life of a pilot and his three passengers on Thursday.
Die Burger newspaper reported on Friday that the Cessna 210, piloted by Markku Torppa, 52, from Somerset West, suddenly developed engine problems while flying a circular route from the Stellenbosch airfield.
"I have 20 years experience as a pilot and had never previously experienced engine problems," Torppa said.
Three passengers - a visitor from Perth, Australia and two from Cape Town - were also on board.
"I had a choice. Either I would show them the winelands or Cape Point. Fortunately the wind was too strong in the Cape - having engine problems above the sea is not good."
The plane was at an altitude of 2 000 feet - about 600m - when Torppa noticed the engine did not have power and saw smoke pouring out of it.
"I was not worried, because pilots are actually trained to handle such situations. I just concentrated on landing."
- Were you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos.