Feds Look into Cessna Landing on I-10

Officials should arrive today or later this week to investigate what happened to a small plane that crash-landed on Interstate 10 on Saturday afternoon, the airport attendant at the Banning Municipal Airport said.

There were no major injuries to the pilot or his three passengers in the crash.

John Sedlock, an attendant at the airport, said the Cessna 182 lost power on its way into the airport.

"He did a marvelous job of landing that plane," Sedlock said of pilot Lanny Ropke, a retired commercial-airline pilot.

Sedlock said officials from the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration, as well as the pilot's insurance company, will look into why the plane lost power and had to land on the interstate near the Hargrave Street exit.

He said they will survey the plane in their investigation, which will probably take a couple of months.

Efforts to reach the FAA and NTSB were unsuccessful Sunday.

"To me, there were several factors involved there," Sedlock said.

A combination of winds up to 49 mph on Saturday and possible electrical failure may have played a role in the crash, Sedlock said.

On Ropke's final approach, the plane lost power, Sedlock said. It was also difficult for Ropke to land safely because he had to avoid so many obstacles on the way down, including cars on the interstate, Sedlock said.

Ropke "came out smelling like a rose," Sedlock said.

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