Pilot hailed hero for landing in shark waters

Captain Dominic James ditched the Pel-Air Aviation air ambulance off Norfolk Island, north of Sydney, on Wednesday night after four aborted landings as poor weather closed in.

As the aircraft ran dangerously low on fuel, James decided to make the water landing rather than miss another run at the runway or have the Westwind jet splutter to a stop mid-air. “This is right at the gold medal level for aviation; if he’s not a hero already he is well on his way to being one,” Pel-Air Aviation chairman John Sharp said.
Rescuers said thirty-something James, who this year featured in women’s magazine Cleo’s ‘Bachelor of the Year’ competition, ensured his passengers and crew stuck together in the cold water as they awaited a rescue in the dark.

“I’ve got to give him full credit, actually,” Norfolk Island airport manager Glenn Robinson  said. “He was the last out of the water, he got on board the boat, he did a (head) count and then he started to relax.”

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