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No injuries in small plane emergency landing

June 20, 2013
Maui Weekly

The Maui News - A small plane made an emergency landing in brush near the shoreline in Waiehu on Sunday, June 16, with all four aboard uninjured, according to Maui fire and Federal Aviation Administration officials.

Firefighters from Kahului and Wailuku responded to a call of a plane crash at 5:38 p.m., said Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga. An engine company from Wailuku came across the pilot, who reported that he and the three other men on board were not hurt.

Residents of Hawaiian Homes in Waiehu witnessed the plane go down and dozens of onlookers converged on the crash site about 50 yards from Waiehu Beach down Lower Waiehu Beach Road.

Richard Olsten, a retired pilot with Pacific Helicopters and small-plane companies, said that the aircraft flew directly over him and turned left toward the ocean. The crash site was about a quarter-mile down the beach from Pakele Place, which caused dozens of police officers, firefighters and medics to walk through the backyards of nearby homes.

Olsten said that it was a miracle that no one was injured.

"The guy kept his cool, obviously, to be able to land there," he said of the pilot. "I mean in my 40 years I've had seven forced landings and I never got hurt, but to land in a spot like that is really good.

"Either super lucky or a lot of skill--or both."

The plane suffered minor damage. The FAA will be investigating the incident.



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