After Harrison Ford was rushed to the hospital after crash-landing his small plane onto a golf course near Santa Monica airport, one of the first things eyewitnesses pointed out to EW was just how “masterful” his landing was. (Which shouldn’t be all that surprising, considering the actor’s storied history with planes.)
They’re not the only ones who are commending the 72-year-old. People talked to Rick Dake of Aviation Consulting Experts, and he agreed. “Everything he did was perfect,” Dake says.
Dake adds that the WWII-era aircraft Ford was flying is not a “forgiving” one, saying many less experienced pilots would crash the plane in the war due to its tendency to flip over when the engine stops.
“That alone is testament to the great ability Harrison Ford had. He made a 180-degree turn with the engine seizing up on him. He almost made it to the runway,” he said, later adding, “He was able to keep that plane away from the houses and land it with the least impact on the community. That was the best place he could have landed it. He was 100 percent doing exactly what an excellent aviator would do.”
His deft flying skills are likely the reason that the actor is, according to his rep, on track to a “full recovery.”