BALANGA CITY, Bataan: Gov. Albert Garcia and Hermosa Mayor Anthony Joseph Inton escaped unhurt after the provincial government’s chopper they were flying made an emergency landing in a grassland inside a private subdivision here on Friday morning.
“God is good,” remarked Inton, pilot of Robinson helicopter with registry No. RP–5148, after they safely landed on a strip of sand of an open field.
The helicopter, purchased by the provincial government in 2008, was not damaged.
“[We were] on the way to land when an engine power failure occurred. I tried to recover the engine but failed so I entered into pilot auto rotation and we landed safely,” Inton said.
The Earthfield subdivision in Barangay Tuyo where the helicopter made an emergency landing is about two kilometers from Camp Tolentino, the police provincial headquarters in Balanga City, where it was to land.
Inton, a pilot for seven years who had just returned last week from training in the United States, said auto rotation is a technique that pilots are trained to use in case of engine power failure.
He described their safe landing as a combination of miracle, luck and skills. He said they were lucky that the chopper did not land on a building.
The mayor said they came from Manila where he and the governor attended a meeting and went back to Bataan to catch up with another meeting.
Garcia declined to be interviewed.
Ernie B. Esconde