Fleming: "Small Planes Safe"

By: George McDonald
By: George McDonald

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Dr. Eldridge Fleming of Tupelo visited his brother, Joe Fleming, in Meridian Friday and traveled here in a single engine airplane that he built himself.

Fleming says he feels totally safe traveling by this means.

"I've always owned single engine airplanes. I have multi-engine rating and a twin, but I've always flown singles and I've flown them all the way from Mississippi to Morristown, New Jersey, to Palm Springs, California," said Fleming. "Knowing how it's made, knowing how it's designed, knowing what its features are, knowing how well we put it together, I feel very safe in this one."

Fleming says, even though many people feel safer flying in larger planes, there are advantages to flying in smaller ones, especially when it comes to an emergency landing.

"A plane like this, you can put it down in a lot of places, and when you fly it in the daytime, you can land it pretty much on any road. You can land it in a pasture and so on. Now this one is designed for landing on pavement, because it's got wheel pants on underneath," Fleming said.

Fleming, a member of the Civil Air Patrol, which assists in rescue and recovery, said safety is a natural part of his life as a pilot.

"And giving the right amount of time for things to happen and knowing your equipment, all of that goes into making it safer," said Fleming.

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