Two Mesa flight instructors, pilots help small plane with landing gear failure

July 05, 2013

Two Mesa helicopter pilots are being credited with helping the pilot of a small plane, after his landing gear failed. Officer Darren Rigsby said he and his partner, both of whom are flight instructors, were in the area when they found out about the mechanical problems with the 1970 Cessna.

“The left main landing gear was not in a locked position,” Rigsby said. “The position it was in at that point, it would not hold the aircraft’s weight upon landing.”

Rigsby said they gave the pilot step-by-step directions so he could get the aircraft on the runway at Phoenix-Mesa-Gateway Airport, safely. The plane suffered some damage to its left wing tip and tail area and there was a small fuel leak, but the pilot was able to walk away and spend the Fourth of July with his family.

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