Former Bethel Mayor Middlebrook survives emergency landing

by Sophie Evan on July 2, 2013

photo courtesy of Wikipedia

photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Bethel’s former Mayor, Eric Middlebrook, had to make an emergency landing in his private plane, Monday.

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Middlebrook says he was on his way to Kuinerraq to work on the refridgeration system at the Coastal Villages processing plant there when he started to experience trouble during his flight.

“About 20 miles from the village my plane lost most of it’s power, and I wasn’t able to keep it’s altitude, and realized that I was going to have to land, and picked a landing spot , shut everything down and landed on the tundra,” says Middlebrook.

All he suffered was a little bump to his forehead.

“I didn’t feel a whole lot of fear, I just felt like I had to take care of things,” says Middlebrook.

He was flying his Cherokee P-A-28, and was alone. He describes the damage to his plane.

“The nose wheel is buried in the tundra and I can’t see underneath, perhaps the propeller and engine,” says Middlebrook.

The Alaska State Troopers were able to reach him just an hour and a half after the emergency landing. Middlebrook say his emergency locator signal was picked up just 5 minutes after it was activated.

“There was a pilot for Yuut air, his name was Blaise, if you can say thank you to him, thank you to the Troopers, and thank you to Major Bruin, and Tom Rattleledge, I really appreciate what they did for me,” says Middlebrook.

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