by Scott Stanley, NorthMyrtleBeachOnline.com
NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, September 29, 2007 – North Myrtle Beach residents and visitors saw an unusual site today of a plane being towed back to the Grand Strand Airport after an emergency landing on the beach.
Around 6pm this evening, Phil Ulrich, pilot and owner of Classic Air Adventures, according to witnesses, executed a perfect emergency landing on the beach around 15th Ave North. The plane, a WACO bi-plane manufactured in 1941, experienced a reported engine failure while flying two passengers along the beach.
Shane Duffy, chief pilot of Executive Helicopters, said Phil had masterfully brought the WACO down to the beach without injury to either of the passengers or beachgoers. Duffy had been in flight returning to the airport when instructed by the tower to investigate the report by the WACO of an emergency landing on the beach.
Due to the experience of Ulrich, the landing was so well executed that witnesses to the landing had asked if it was a scheduled landing on the beach.
After the safe landing, city of North Myrtle Beach Police and Executive Helicopters staff assisted in towing the aircraft back to the airport.
Ulrich was overheard commenting, “In over 30 years, this was his first single-engine engine failure.”