Remarkably — since one tends to think of midair collisions as unsurvivable accidents, with both airplanes spinning out of the sky in pieces — the Searey fared much better. The 172’s propeller had taken a chunk out of the Searey’s right wing and partially severed its aft fuselage a few inches ahead of the empennage. The 4,500-hour pilot, 59, heard a loud sound but had no idea of its cause. Perceiving that he had lost pitch control from the stick — probably because the elevator, even if its cables were not severed, was just making the entire empennage flop up and down — he guessed that something in his recently built airplane might have broken. The Searey configuration is similar to that of the Icon A5 (and, anciently, the Republic Seabee), with the pusher engine sitting atop the high wing and behind the cabin. Finding that he could use power from the high-mounted engine to keep his nose down, he was able, with admirable airmanship, to make a controlled crash landing. Neither he nor his passenger, a 9-year-old girl, was injured.