I have no idea how the flight got to this point, but according to this CBC article, once the pilot found himself low over downtown Montreal in a Cessna 172M without a working engine, he seems to have done a good job landing on Avenue du Parc in Montreal, with no harm to people or property.
The incident happened yesterday on September 10, the day before the fifth anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, so it’s easy to imagine how people might react when they saw a plane swooping down and landing in the middle of a major city, right? Wrong: Montreal continues to deserve its reputation as Canada’s (and North America’s?) most laid-back city. Here’s how people actually reacted:
No one was hurt during the emergency landing, which unfolded in front of a crowd of amused onlookers lounging on Mount Royal Park’s green hillside.
They hovered around the plane and snapped photos.
What about the police? Surely they activated some kind of emergency anti-terrorism plan? Well, actually …
Montreal police were the first emergency workers called to the scene.
Police spokesman Robert Mansueto said he’d never seen anything like this in the city.
“I think this surprised a lot of police officers,” Mansueto said.
“Everybody did a double take, you know, saying is this a joke or is this for real.”
Terrorists win whenever they make people afraid, so it’s nice to be able to celebrate a victory of common sense over fear on this otherwise-grim anniversary. Kudos to the good people of Montreal.
(Photo: Tanya Birkbeck, CBC)