Police officers in California completed a stunning rescue Sunday after a plane crashed onto nearby railroad tracks.
According to KSWB-TV, officers in the Foothill Division of the Los Angeles Police Department received a call just after 2 p.m. on Sunday after a small airplane was damaged during an emergency landing.
Officers arrived at the scene to find the unidentified pilot stranded inside his single-engine Cessna 172.
The pilot was suffering significant blood loss from an injury on his head, and he appeared to be stuck inside the plane. Meanwhile, a Metrolink train was quickly approaching the crashed vehicle, Fox News reported.
Body camera footage captured the heroic moment when the police officers were able to remove the injured pilot from the cockpit of the plane.
Just seconds after the extraction, the oncoming train smashed full speed into the damaged airplane.
The LAPD lauded the “heroism and quick action” shown by the officers in a tweet that included a video of the incident.
WARNING: The following video contains images and language some viewers will find disturbing.
Foothill Division Officers displayed heroism and quick action by saving the life of a pilot who made an emergency landing on the railroad tracks at San Fernando Rd. and Osborne St., just before an oncoming train collided with the aircraft. pic.twitter.com/DDxtGGIIMo
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) January 10, 2022
According to Fox News, the pilot was the only person on board the plane. He was rushed to a regional trauma center for treatment after the officers rescued him.
Before crashing, the Cessna 172 had taken off from the nearby Whiteman Airport, NBC News reported. This is reportedly not the first time this sort of incident has occurred near the airport.
When Whiteman Airport was first opened just after World War II, the nearby town of Pacoima, California, was sparsely populated, NBC reported.
In recent years, the area has seen an influx of people, particularly Mexican-Americans. The now-densely populated area has been “the site of multiple small plane crashes,” according to NBC.
Community councilwoman Monica Rodriguez has gone as far as calling for the airport’s closure, citing danger to the community.
“Tragically, this latest incident reflects yet another example of the public safety threat that Whiteman Airport continues to pose to my constituents and why I’ve been a consistent voice in calling for its closure,” she said in a statement posted to Twitter.
On November 12, 2020, I called for the closure of #WhitemanAirport and we have more work to do to get the county to heed our calls.
— Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez (@MRodCD7) January 10, 2022
Thankfully, it appears no one lost their life as a result of this latest crash, thanks in large part to the heroic actions of the LAPD.
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