San Diego

Airplane Lands on Interstate 8 in El Cajon, East of San Diego

The small plane made an emergency landing on the highway in El Cajon

A single-engine airplane made an emergency landing onto a busy Southern California highway Friday avoided crashing into any vehicles.

"For them to make that landing and have nobody else involved in it, I'd say that's a miracle," said California Highway Patrol Officer Travis Garrow.

A 25-year-old flight instructor and his 36-year-old student were traveling in the Piper aircraft when they experienced engine loss. 

The flight instructor took over the control to make the emergency landing, Garrow said.

He put the plane down in the middle of westbound Interstate 8 just before 11:30 a.m., flying under power lines. 

A couple who captured the plane landing on a mobile phone yelled out loud when they saw it.

“That ----- just landed on the freeway,” Zach Decker said in the video. “And he’s got it under control.” 

When Zach's wife Keri noticed the plane flying precariously low, she quickly pulled out her phone to record the whole thing.

"It was like magical, like the fact that he was able to maneuver around the cars and that the cars were smart enough to get away," she said.

When emergency personnel arrived, the plane had been pushed over to the right shoulder blocking the Mollison Avenue off-ramp lane. Mollison Avenue exit was closed while crews remove the wings from the plane to get it off the freeway, Garrow said.

This happened on I8 west at Mollison Avenue.

The plane was headed to Gillespie Field when the trouble started and the teacher decided he should take over and land the plane.

Once the plane touched down, it traveled about a half a mile on the freeway before coming to a stop.

"This is pretty cool actually because you could tell he had it under control." Zach Decker said. "He was obviously a good pilot."

After a local reporter tweeted a photo of the pilot, the San Diego State University Baseball team's account replied saying the pilot was one of its own, former first baseman Ryan Muno.

Officials said no one was injured although Muno and the student were a little shaken up.

"They were like, he was just rubbing his head, and just like, he, he was scared," Keri Decker said.

No vehicles were hit and no one was injured, a feat veteran pilots are giving Muno credit for.

"He is the 'Sully' of San Diego today," retired Pacific Southwest Airlines Captain Joe Graham said. He has more than 30,000 flight hours under his belt.

Graham said in his tenure as a pilot he's never seen the kind of engine that was in Muno's plane fail

A SigAlert was issued as CHP officers worked to clear the aircraft from the highway.

NBC 7's Joe Little talks to the family who caught the amazing landing on camera.

Both the Federal AviationAdministration and the National Transportation Safety Board were dispatched to the scene to handle the investigation, Garrow said.

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