The pilot of a Cirrus SR22 is safe after successfully ditching the Cirrus he was flying 250 miles short of Maui. Details are still sparse, but a Cirrus Aircraft representative told Flying that the pilot was ferrying the airplane from the West Coast of the United States to Australia when the ditching occurred. Flight tracking sites show the airplane, N7YT, is registered to Cirrus Aircraft. The flight departed from Tracy, California, headed for Kahului, Hawaii. The SR22 had flown for 14 and a half hours when it was ditched.
Cirrus spokesman Ben Kowalski said that Cirrus was still in “detail gathering mode” and is “assisting the authorities in the investigation.” Kowalski added that, “First and foremost we’re remarkably thankful and happy that everyone is okay and for the work of the Coast Guard in the rescue.”
The Coast Guard reported on its site the airplane had run out of fuel. Kowalski pointed out that the deployment was a “planned” one and that the pilot knew for some time he would have to ditch, which allowed him time to contact the Coast Guard, which, as you can see in the remarkable video, was ready for the rescue.
The save brings the number of successful Cirrus chute deployments to 51, with 104 lives saved in the process.
We’ll report on additional details as they emerge.