Couple uses iPads to navigate and land safely after airplane electrical failure

Photo © KDLTNews

Photo © KDLTNews

Pilots love iPads. Just take a look at any commercial airliner and you're apt to see the pilots carrying iPads equipped with Electronic Flight Bag applications. One Wyoming couple has to be extremely thankful that they had their iPads with them Friday night when their airplane, a single-engine Piper Comanche, suffered a full electrical system failure on a flight from their home to Wisconsin.

All on-board navigation gear and radios were shut down as a result, with only the airspeed indicator and altimeter working. The couple quickly grabbed their iPads, using the devices to navigate about 80 miles to the Rapid City, South Dakota airport. They were unable to warn the tower that they were entering the airport's airspace and would be landing without landing gear.

Thanks to the pilot's skill, the aircraft made a belly landing on a runway used by smaller aircraft. The Piper was damaged and it will take some time for it to be repaired, but if it had not been for the assistance of the iPads and knowing how to use the apps on the devices, the outcome could have been much worse.