WATCH | Small aircraft towed after daring emergency landing on Moloto Road in Pretoria

play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
  • A pilot, from Blue Chip Flight School, was forced to make a daring emergency landing in Pretoria on Wednesday.
  • The Cessna 172M Skyhawk suffered engine failure on its way back to Wonderboom Airport shortly after take-off.
  • Henk Kraaij, managing director of Blue Chip, praised the flight instructor for his skill in landing safely.

Tshwane's notorious Moloto Road has claimed many lives over the years - and has a reputation for being a dangerous place to drive.

But this may change after a pilot, who was instructing a trainee, made a daring emergency landing in their small aircraft on the road on Wednesday evening.

News24 received a video of the Cessna 172M Skyhawk, being towed along Zambezi Drive, from Lieutenant-Colonel Tume Ramahlaha, who was off duty at the time.

Traffic was brought to a standstill as the aircraft was towed, with the assistance of the Tshwane Metro Police Department (TMPD) and the South African Police Service (SAPS), back to Wonderboom Airport.

READ | SA is going through a commuter rail revolution

The Cessna belongs to Blue Chip Flight School and had taken off from Wonderboom around 19:30 on Wednesday.

According to Henk Kraaij, managing director of Blue Chip, it was a training flight, with one of Blue Chip's instructors and a trainee pilot.

"Shortly after take-off, they noticed that the engine temperature was rising, and they immediately requested Wonderboom to allow them to land. They requested priority as the temperature was rising still," Kraaij told News24.

A few seconds later, he said, the engine died.

ALSO READ | This too Shell pass - fight to stop Wild Coast seismic survey is not over

"But with a considerable amount of skill, our instructor was able to land on Moloto Road, without any injuries. We are very thankful for this, and it goes to show again that the training we provide has paid off," Kraaij said.

He said the aircraft was being inspected by technicians and this would determine the cause of the engine failure. But it was probably, he said, a part failure.

"It's just one of those technical things, with a one in a million chance of failing," he said. "We have flown the plane for many, many hours, and it never put a foot wrong, not a single issue with the engine. It's such a lovely plane to fly," he added.

Kraaij praised the instructor for bringing the plane down safely.

After the landing, he said, Blue Chip activated its emergency response plan, and immediately notified the Civil Aviation Authority.

He thanked the TMPD and SAPS for their "excellent" work.

Ramahlaha said he was shocked, but thankful there had not been a serious accident. 

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Are you going to keep wearing a mask following the announcement that it is no longer required under law?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
No ways, I'm done
41% - 2917 votes
Yes, I still want to be cautious
21% - 1507 votes
Only certain circumstances
37% - 2651 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.