Airplane makes emergency landing at restaurant west of Durango

Plane apparently experienced engine failure

A pilot made an emergency landing in a single-engine airplane Tuesday morning in the parking lot at Kennebec Café, 12 miles west of Durango. The pilot, who apparently experienced engine failure, made a safe landing and was uninjured. Enlargephoto

Mia Rupani/Durango Herald

A pilot made an emergency landing in a single-engine airplane Tuesday morning in the parking lot at Kennebec Café, 12 miles west of Durango. The pilot, who apparently experienced engine failure, made a safe landing and was uninjured.

A pilot in a small airplane that experienced engine failure made an emergency landing Tuesday in the Kennebec Café parking lot near Hesperus.

The plane landed about 11 a.m. with no engine running, said Barbara Helmer, owner of the restaurant 12 miles west of Durango.

“It came down very quietly,” Helmer said. “We didn’t even notice it.”

The plane took off from Animas Airpark in Durango. The pilot was uninjured, she said.

“He just quietly landed in the parking lot; just dropped out of the sky at about 55 mph,” Helmer said.

“He did a good job of bringing it down.”

The pilot tried to land on County Road 124, but there were too many power lines and trees.

“He got the propeller turning just enough to get a little bit of altitude again, and then he was able to make it over to my parking lot,” she said.

She declined to identify the pilot.

“He’s a little shook,” she said.

“One of my employees came in and said, ‘What’s that airplane doing in your parking lot?’ and I was like, ‘Yeah, whatever.’ I thought he was kidding me, and I went out there, and sure enough, there was the airplane sitting in the parking lot. We’re glad he’s OK.”

The single-engine plane is mostly white with two red lines running the length of the body and a wing above the cabin.

The plane is registered to Robert Flannery of Durango, according to a tail number search on the Federal Aviation Administration’s website.

The plane is an 8A Luscombe fixed-wing, according to FAA records.

shane@durangoherald.com

A pilot made an emergency landing in a single-engine airplane Tuesday morning in the parking lot at Kennebec Café, 12 miles west of Durango. The pilot, who apparently experienced engine failure, made a safe landing and was uninjured. Enlargephoto

Mia Rupani/Durango Herald

A pilot made an emergency landing in a single-engine airplane Tuesday morning in the parking lot at Kennebec Café, 12 miles west of Durango. The pilot, who apparently experienced engine failure, made a safe landing and was uninjured.