Pilot John Gregory was not hurt after the plane crash in Idaho. (Cyndy Koures/Twitter)

Small plane crash lands on top of Idaho tree, pilot rescued

Officials are trying to determine how to remove the plane

A pilot who was trying to crash-land this week in an Idaho field instead brought his small plane to rest at the top of a 60-foot (18-meter) tree, officials said.

Pilot John Gregory was not hurt in the Monday night crash, which happened when his single-engine Piper Cub PA-18 lost power and a wing strut became entangled in the tree, said the fire department in the resort town of McCall.

READ MORE: 1 dead after jet blows an engine; woman nearly sucked out

Gregory was rescued from his perch atop the giant white fir by volunteer firefighter Randy Acker, who owns a tree-removal company.

“My thought was, I need to get up there and see what’s going on,” Acker said.

Acker had Gregory stand up in the plane so he could cut the pilot’s harness and clip him to a safety line for the descent. Gregory was brought down safely with the tree still lodged in the branches.

Most of the weight of the plane was borne by one tree, but it also was touching a nearby lodgepole pine tree.

“Those wings were perfectly centred over the top of the tree,” said McCall Fire Capt. Brandon Swain.

A piece of the plane’s propeller and one of its wheels had fallen to the ground but the rest of the plane was intact, suspended in the tree.

Acker cut branches as he scaled the tree until he was about 20 feet (6 metres) from the top, where higher branches were supporting the plane.

Swain said Acker then secured the plane to the tree using rope webbing before Gregory was rescued.

“I’ve never seen anything like this happen,” Acker said. “Just glad I was able to help.”

Officials are trying to determine how to remove the plane from its perch and warned people to stay away from it.

The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

No bucks for Ellison park expansion, ministry tells Vernon chamber

Vernon Chamber of Commerce vows to help government connect with potential funding partners to see Chelsea Estate purchased

COVID-19: Vernon fields and courts ready for booking

Local sport organizations will soon be able to get back out on the field for limited activities

$500 fine for Vernon man caught near Coldstream playground

Richard Slobodian, 58, served one night in jail and ordered to pay for breaching probation

Vernon firefighters showcase new rescue equipment

New tools helping VFRS make safer, swifter and more versatile rescue operations

House arrest for Vernon physiotherapist guilty of sexual assault

Stephen Witvoet to serve 18-month conditional sentencing following July 8 hearing

B.C. identifies 20 new COVID-19 cases, travellers specified in count

Pandemic total 3,028 cases, 51 people from outside Canada

Kelowna taxpayers could pay $90K for losses caused by cancelled Memorial Cup

$135,000 would be put aside for a potential bid for a future opportunity to host the tournament

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

Motorcycle rider seriously injured in collision with vehicle on Highway 97 west of Pritchard

Chase RCMP report that motorcycle was attempting to pass when crash occurred

Predator mutilated cats in Kelowna: BC SPCA

The BC SPCA confirmed a mutilated cat was killed by a predator

LETTER: Former Summerland mayors speak out on solar project

Five former Summerland mayors sign name to short letter

Emergency crews conduct CPR on unresponsive person in Okanagan Lake

West Kelowna emergency crews are on scene at the shores of Jubilee Mobile Home Park

Filing deadline in RCMP sexual-harassment class-action extended due to COVID-19

Plaintiffs now have until January 2021 to submit claims for up to $222,000

Jamie Bacon pleads guilty to charge in Surrey Six case

The plea brings an end to a complex legal case that has spanned more than a decade

Most Read