Town Square

Post a New Topic

Small plane makes emergency landing at The Horse Park in Woodside

Original post made on Nov 9, 2021

A small plane that took off from the Palo Alto Airport made an emergency landing Sunday afternoon at a horse park in Woodside, fire officials said.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, November 8, 2021, 9:52 AM

Comments (27)

Posted by cid
a resident of another community
on Nov 9, 2021 at 12:40 am

cid is a registered user.

Incident - Private plane reported unexpected landing in Woodside after leaving Palo Alto. The Members of a Flying Club out of the Palo Alto Airport have been flying over to Half Moon Bay to practice "Touch and Go's" where they circle and land briefly then take off again, repeatedly, for an hour at a tine, then fly back to Palo Alto. I do not know why they come over here to bother us with their repetitive noisy take-offs, and low altitude circling, but we have started to report them, and now it appears several are turning off their transponders so as to not be able to be tracked by the "Flight Aware" software. We have had a plane out of a Sacramento "Flying Club" crash in Moss Beach awhile back, and the female passenger died. Palo Alto Area Pilots, Please don't fly over here in faulty planes. Sunday's incident should be warning enough!
Web Link
another report: Web Link


Posted by cid
a resident of another community
on Nov 9, 2021 at 12:53 am

cid is a registered user.

If there is a follow-up story, I would like the reporter to find out where the pilot was heading, if not to HAF (now known as the Eddie Andreini, Sr. Airfield) which is - NOT - in Half Moon Bay but was originally called Half Moon Bay Airport. Moss Beach is 7 miles north of Half Moon Bay in the unincorporated area of San Mateo County. The same town where the infamous surfing wave Mavericks is located (although often mis-represented as in Half Moon Bay as well.)
Web Link


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 1:02 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

Congratulations and thank you to the pilot for his decision to land there and not to fly over heavily populated areas to return to PAO with an uncertain engine condition.


Posted by Palo Alto native
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 9, 2021 at 3:23 am

Palo Alto native is a registered user.

Thank you cid for reporting this. I too do not like the noisy low flying planes flying over my fine in Palo Alto. I never got to vote for the expansion of PAO. Why do plane owners get unlimited rights while those of us under them have to endure Their noisy, pollution generating fumes. Start thinking about replacing PAO with housing!


generating


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 7:39 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

" Start thinking about replacing PAO with housing!"

Check the floodplain maps - there is no way that housing could be built where the airport is located.

And, having accepted grant funds from the FAA, the city is obligated to keep the airport open for the next 25-30 years.


Posted by JR
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 9, 2021 at 8:05 am

JR is a registered user.

Palo Alto is under no obligation to accommodate private jets and planes at PAO, many of which are owned by out-of-town millionaires and billionaires. Our patience is wearing thin with non-stop noise pollution and frequent safety incidents.

Thankfully the plane was able to land safely this time, but it's only a matter of time before another fatality happens, or worse. The land PAO now sits on should be returned to nature as an extension of Baylands Nature Preserve.


Posted by Bob Wenzlau
a resident of Crescent Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 8:10 am

Bob Wenzlau is a registered user.

While not the topic, I also support exploring converting PAO to housing. Santa Monica airport redeveloped their private airport. The land is owned by Palo Alto, and likely the 120 acres is a billion dollar asset that offers no return. We serve very few Palo Altans. Land development that anticipates sea level rise will be the new norm. That the airport deposits lead across our community and is an incredible noise nuisance further invites at least asking the question. The airport could offer 4,500 units of housing, and a unique place for engaging with the bay. The topic is worthy of evaluation to examine considerations on either side of the argument, especially when we face both budget shortfalls, climate crisis and a housing shortage. Let's take a look!


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 8:13 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"Palo Alto is under no obligation to accommodate private jets and planes at PAO,"

Wrong - as a long time FAA grant recipient PAO is obligated to do exactly that - subject only to the field length limitations that apply to specific aircraft. PAO cannot discriminate against general or commercial aircraft that are capable of using the current runway.


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 9:01 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"Santa Monica airport redeveloped their private airport."

Wrong - In 2017 Santa Monica entered into a consent decree with the FAA that requires Santa Monica to keep their airport opened until 2028.


Posted by Jim Lange
a resident of Los Altos Hills
on Nov 9, 2021 at 9:16 am

Jim Lange is a registered user.

Speaking as a former military pilot and retired airline captain, there are far too many rank amateurs flying private single-engine planes, many of whom are not instrument rated & shouldn't be flying an airplane in the first place as they endanger the lives of others.

Only those with an ATP (Airline Transport Rating), commercial multi-engine rating, or a skilled military pilot should be allowed to fly an aircraft.

The crashings of John Denver and JFK Jr. (who both had single engine/visual ratings but were otherwise unqualified to fly an airplane) along with countless other air-related mishaps & tragedies speaks volumes.

Perhaps it would be best if all of the wannabe aviators flew radio-controlled model airplanes instead and left the real flying up to the pros.





Posted by JR
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:08 am

JR is a registered user.

"Wrong - as a long time FAA grant recipient PAO is obligated to do exactly that"

False. Palo Alto is not beholden to corrupt agreements negotiated in bad faith, and will act in the best interest of its own residents, which may not align with the interests of private jet owning millionaires and billionaires. If you want an airport for your private jet, go build it in your own city. Take notice.


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:26 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

As an instrument rated, single engine land and glider pilot who has made hundreds of off field landings (Cessna 185) as far north as the Artic Circle I am impressed with both the judgement and the skill that this pilot made in safely executing this off field landing at the Horse Park. Such off field landings are seldom made by either military or commercial pilots - they are very different than landing on a 10,000 ft paved runway.


Posted by Bob Wenzlau
a resident of Crescent Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:39 am

Bob Wenzlau is a registered user.

What is exemplified here in all of Peter's responses is that our "Palo Alto Airport" seeks to be controlled by members out of Palo Alto - he asserts a regional interest (not as a Palo Alto resident). Local residents deserve a proportionally stronger voice in our land use choices.

Santa Monica will close their airport and dedicate the land to other uses - Peter's remark is misleading. Web Link This is an important precedent as it shows a community can escape the FAA contract.


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:59 am

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"Santa Monica will close their airport and dedicate the land to other uses - Peter's remark is misleading."

Wrong - the link cited states exactly what I said "Santa Monica Airport will close in 2028".

"What is exemplified here in all of Peter's responses is that our "Palo Alto Airport" seeks to be controlled by members out of Palo Alto - he asserts a regional interest (not as a Palo Alto resident)."

Wrong - I made no such assertion. The Palo Alto City Council voluntarily submitted numerous AIP requests to the FAA in which the City Council committed to operate he airport for 25 years from the date of each grant. Your elected officials made this legally binding decision and this legally binding commitment.

BTW - During most of my years of flying out of PAO I was a Palo Alto resident and I was appointed by the City Council to represent (and for a number of those years I served as Chair) Palo Alto on the Palo Alto Airport Joint Community Relations Committee. I am no longer an active pilot and I have no affiliation with any PAO activity.



Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Nov 9, 2021 at 11:56 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

The Santa Monica airport used to be the site of MeDonnell Douglas - I used to work there. McDonnell Douglas moved to Huntington Beach in what were fields and now houses. It was bought by Boeing at the time that the US decided to shut down the space business. Now SM Airport enjoys notorierty in many books in which the authors are high end flyers of expensive planes but those authors are now moving their story lines to Burbank Airport. A lot of hi-tech growth in Santa Monica and all of those empty fields which are now being developed - giant stadium there now. Lots of growth changes up the use of land and air rights. flying clubs who use PA airspace needs to get pulled in. That is a commercial business used for a city owned property.


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 12:05 pm

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"flying clubs who use PA airspace needs to get pulled in. That is a commercial business used for a city owned property."

Here is the AIP obligation language that the City Council voluntarily agreed to:
"22. Economic Nondiscrimination.
a. It will make the airport available as an airport for public use on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical activities, including commercial aeronautical activities offering services to the public at the airport."


Posted by Cecilia Vargas
a resident of another community
on Nov 9, 2021 at 1:18 pm

Cecilia Vargas is a registered user.

In the best interests of all non-aviator Palo Alto residents, why not simply close the Palo Alto Airport down and re-direct all of these amateur single-engine visual flight rule pilots to Reed-Hillview in San Jose?

East San Jose is not much of a place and is well-suited for small aircraft providing they do not make any emergency landings at Eastridge Shopping Center.






Posted by TimR
a resident of Downtown North
on Nov 9, 2021 at 3:56 pm

TimR is a registered user.

Just a big field with no trees? Sounds like a perfect place for high density housing, too. If rich people have to give up their planes, they should have to give up their horses, too! But it's private land, you say? That's what eminent domain is for. Just throw some equity arguments in there, and a seizure would sail through.


Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Nov 9, 2021 at 8:18 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

The airport area is not approproiate for housing. It is in a flood zone - Quit with that comment. It is not a "housing area".

The question is it appropriate as an Airport? A lot of agreements were made way back when but the tidal rise is changing that. No where did anyone agree that the area would become a commercial area available for commercial activity - flying clubs, heliport, etc. You can't get there from here - People are trying to make this a commercial zone for flyers - stop it - not safe or secure. It is vulnerable to high tides and cannot sustain commercial activity.


Posted by AB
a resident of Mountain View
on Nov 9, 2021 at 9:12 pm

AB is a registered user.

“In the best interests of all non-aviator Palo Alto residents”

People with your interests are not the only people whose values matter.

“why not simply close the Palo Alto Airport down and re-direct all of these amateur single-engine visual flight rule pilots to Reed-Hillview in San Jose?”

Because that suggestion is only simple for people who don’t care about the effect on others. For example, there are people who are trying to close Reid Hillview airport in San Jose and “simply” send those aircraft to Palo Alto.

Another example, why don’t non aviator Palo Alto residents who don’t like small aircraft “simply” live in a town without an airport or an economy that can support so many pilots? There are many less densely populated, less techie areas more suited to their housing. Unless you were born here over 90 years ago, the airport was here before you were.

If you want to minimize air traffic, keep as many airports open as possible to spread it out thinner. If you want less noise, support tech advancements like electric aircraft which most pilots look forward to.

Closing the airport does not stop the flying. It only forces more cars on the road to get the pilots home again. Be grateful for the aircraft being concentrated at Palo Alto while it lasts. What better place than next to a golf course on one side and open water on the other? In not too long, flying cars are going to be landing in your neighbors’ yards and their high school children are going to be flying them to school and you will wish there was still an airport to “simply” send them to.


Posted by AB
a resident of Mountain View
on Nov 9, 2021 at 9:43 pm

AB is a registered user.

[Post removed; successive posts by same author are not permitted.]


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2021 at 11:32 pm

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"No where did anyone agree that the area would become a commercial area available for commercial activity - flying clubs, heliport, etc."

Every year for over 40 years, when the County owned the airport, they agreed that "It will make the airport available as an airport for public use on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical activities, including commercial aeronautical activities offering services to the public at the airport." and the City has continued to make such agreements every year since is acquired the airport when it applied for a new FAA AIP grant. Those obligations continue for 25 years after the date of the last agreement.

These AIP obligations are bullet proof agreements that have withstood dozens of court challenges.


Posted by Kathy Baker
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Nov 10, 2021 at 10:49 am

Kathy Baker is a registered user.

Does San Carlos still have an airport? If so, maybe small aircraft can be diverted there instead.

Or simply close the PA Airport and open-up part of Moffett Field to these amateur pilots. There is plenty of runway space and it is conveniently located along the 101, not far from Palo Alto.

Another option...design & fly EV-powered helium mini-blimps instead as it is eco-friendly, non-inflammable, and noise-free.

We have the technology.


Posted by PeterCarpenter
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 10, 2021 at 12:38 pm

PeterCarpenter is a registered user.

"Or simply close the PA Airport "

Please read the prior postings. The City of Palo Alto is legally obligated to maintain the airport as an airport for 25 years from the date of the latest FAA AIP grant that it applied for and has received. Closing the airport is not an option during that time.


Posted by PAUSD parent
a resident of Southgate
on Nov 13, 2021 at 12:00 am

PAUSD parent is a registered user.

I have seen this emergency landing happen live! I was flying overhead on a plane from Amsterdam and saw the white small plane flying really low over the horse park and then land. I told my wife later that day that I was surprised they were using the park as an airport not knowing this was an emergency landing!


Posted by Town Square Moderator
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 17, 2021 at 12:15 pm

Town Square Moderator is a registered user.

Editor's Note: The comment below was posted elsewhere by David Meinhardt of Woodside and has been moved here since it relates to this story:

[Jim Lange's comment] claims that no one should fly an airplane unless he/she has an Air Airline Transport Rating, a commercial multi-engine rating, or is a skilled military pilot. That is ridiculous. Is a person supposed to be born with this qualification? One must first have to learn to fly, and, of course, learning requires flying an airplane. Same as learning to drive a car.

Without people learning to be pilots, we would have no airline pilots, military pilots, etc. The person writing this letter makes a statement so stupid as to defy imagination and demonstrates total ignorance of the process of learning to fly. He states he is a former military pilot and retired airline captain. How did he learn?


Posted by Lana Berkowitz
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Nov 18, 2021 at 7:44 am

Lana Berkowitz is a registered user.

My cousin was a TAC pilot in the USAF. He learned to fly in the military following preliminary qualification examinations for flight school.

And while anybody can to learn to fly privately, that doesn't necessarily make them skilled pilots.

In the military, recurrent training and re-qualification are mandatory requirements in order to continue flying a multi-million dollar aircraft.

Lastly, most major airlines prefer to hire former military pilots providing they are still in their late 20s.



Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from Palo Alto Online sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

Arya Steakhouse, a standby for steaks and Persian cuisine, moves to downtown Palo Alto
By The Peninsula Foodist | 0 comments | 2,730 views

“To get the full value of joy . . .
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 962 views

We need an audit of city spending
By Diana Diamond | 0 comments | 616 views

 

Register today to support local nonprofits

The 38th annual Moonlight Run and Walk is Friday evening, September 9. Proceeds go to the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund, benefiting local nonprofits that serve families and children in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties. Join us under the light of the full Harvest Moon on a 5K walk, 5K run, 10K run or half marathon. Complete your race in person or virtually to support local nonprofits.

Register Now!