It is a well-known saying among aviators that, “Any landing you can walk away from is a good one”. (It was first penned by Gerald R. Massie in 1944 after the crash-landing of his B-17 while serving as a photographer.) In which case, the small airplane crash reported on Sunday, October 11, south of the Bishop Airport runway, was a example of a “good landing.”
The pilot reported that the engine quit as he approached the airport. He could not make it to the runway, so he had no choice but to land on the flat ground south of the runway.. The plane ended up on the ground, flipped upside-down.
According to subsequent reports, we were able to confirm that the pilot, identified as Jeff Thompson of Bishop, walked away from the crash, relatively unscathed. He then walked to his car parked at the airport, drove home, and called to report the accident as required by FAA regulations.
The cause of the accident is still under investigation according to National Transportation Safety Board. NTSB investigations can take as long as a year. Usually “all’s well that ends well,” but depending on the investigation’s preliminary findings, the pilot’s license can be revoked or suspended.