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Wife takes controls after pilot is incapacitated

May 27, 2011, 12:29 pm

During a routine flight from San Bernadino, California to Colorado Springs last week, a woman had to take over the controls of a small airplane when her husband began having trouble breathing and speaking, The Chicago Tribune reports.

"I was terrified - terrified," the wife told the news source. "I don't know how well I was flying that plane. I was trying, it was terrifying. I had never been responsible for a plane before."

The controllers first became concerned when the plane started making erratic maneuvers and the pilot was having difficulty breathing while talking to them, according to CBS. Once they realized what was happening, the controllers quickly began guiding the woman away from a mountain range, with the help of another pilot nearby.

The Federal Aviation Administration released documents on Thursday that indicated the pilot may have been suffering from hypoxia, which happens when the body is deprived of oxygen, the Tribune reports.

The perilous situation shows the need for pilots life insurance, as there are a number of hazards which can happen during a flight.  

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