Published: Tue, August 14, 2018
Markets | By Erika Turner

Stolen Alaska Airlines plane crashes after unauthorized takeoff from Seattle-Tacoma airport

Stolen Alaska Airlines plane crashes after unauthorized takeoff from Seattle-Tacoma airport

A "suicidal" airline mechanic stole an empty plane before flying around an airport then crashing near a small island.

Gregoire said officials were in contact with their airline partners and federal agencies from the first moments they knew something was wrong.

Video taken by a bystander showed the passenger plane making an unlikely upside-down loop, then flying low over Puget Sound before crashing into the sparsely populated Ketron Island in the north-western U.S. state of Washington. Flames quickly erupted in the dense forests.

The Horizon Air Q400 plane of Alaska Airlines was taken by an employee from the airport which resulted in interruption of air traffic at the airport. It normally carries 76 passengers. Confirmed info. this is a single suicide male.

He said:"I wouldn't know how to land - I wasn't really planning on landing it".

The US fighter jets chased the planes to divert the Horizon Air Q400 from the crowded area after the airline employee conducted an unauthorized takeoff without passengers.

After approximately 90 minutes the plane and its pilot crashed near the sparsely populated Ketron Island, located in the state of Washington.

He flew the plane for more than an hour, saw the sights, did some risky aerobatic maneuvers and ultimately crashed on Ketron Island while F-15 fighter jets patrolled the skies.

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"I think that probably helps your enthusiasm to continue to come to the air park and fly, but the actual flying has to be done at the air park with a qualified, certified instructor", Sonday said.

Authorities say there is no connection to terrorism and they do not believe anyone else was on the plane. "Kept the video rolling", he added. The plane went through several 100-foot-high lines of trees and was fragmented from the crash into pieces tiny enough to pick up, NTSB Western Pacific Region chief Debra Eckrote said Sunday. He was in uniform, had proper credentials and had clearance to be in secure aircraft areas, said Tilden, the airline CEO. He estimated that the plane at its lowest point was no more than 30.5 metres above the water. "And then made his way down toward the island", he added.

During the ordeal, the control center was able to make contact with the thief, identifying himself as "Rich".

The man could be heard on audio recordings telling air traffic controllers that he is "just a broken guy".

He talked about a range of things with the control tower, such as how he feels Horizon pays ground service agents a very low wage for their work.

The status of the pilot following the crash is now unknown.

"I want to share how incredibly sad all of us at Alaska are about this incident".

"I would hope it is for a guy like me", he said. When asked to land the plane, Rich said that he isn't now in the idea of landing the plane and he's not finished yet.

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