Pilot makes emergency landing on Fresno street and avoids power lines. ‘Very fortunate’

A pilot made an emergency landing Sunday afternoon on a Fresno street.

According to the Fresno Police Department, a pilot in a Cesna Skyhawk took off from Sky Park Airport and flew around Clovis with a tow banner and advertisement on the back.

The pilot was returning to Sky Park Airport at 2:20 p.m. when he lost power and had engine failure at 1,200-feet altitude, Lt. Steve Card said.

Card said the pilot took “swift action to avoid crashing the airplane” and landed on Emerson Avenue, near Marks Avenue, avoiding the power lines.

“He picked a spot to land a plane safely,” Card said. “He was able to navigate the aircraft in the manner in which he did and landed safely without striking the power lines, homes, vehicles or anything else.”

A neighbor told The Bee she heard a noise outside and thought it was a truck and that it started accelerating.

A reader told The Bee she was at the swimming pool nearby and watched the plane fly by and heard the aircraft lose power.

Card said the pilot wasn’t injured but shaken up.

“He’s very fortunate,” Card said. “No one got hurt and could have been much worse, obviously. Emergency situation, quick landing.

Card described the pilot as a “highly-rated” who has “commercial-rated pilot experience.”

The area was closed for several hours as the Federal Aviation Administration investigated.