Entries in Plane (20)


Large Cargo Plane Crashes Near Birmingham Airport

Joseph Devenney/Getty Images(BIRMINGHAM, Ala.) -- A large cargo plane crashed outside the Birmingham, Ala. airport on Wednesday morning.

Flames were reported at the scene where a UPS jet crashed near the Birmingham International Airport, killing the pilot and copilot, according to law enforcement sources at the scene.

The plane had taken off from Louisville and was approaching the Birmingham International Airport around 6 a.m. when it went down, according to authorities.

The TSA said they believed the pilot and copilot were the only individuals on board with the cargo. Authorities have not yet released information on their status.

The National Transportation Safety Board launched an immediate investigation into the crash, announcing that they would send a full "Go Team" of investigators to Birmingham. The first investigator was expected to arrive by 10 a.m., with a full team to arrive later Wednesday.

The plane, an Airbus A300, was manufactured in 2004. It's not clear what cargo the plane was carrying.

It was also unclear what caused the crash. Near 6 a.m., the airport had visibility of 10 miles and a cloud ceiling of 700 feet.

UPS released a statement this morning following the crash:

"At this time, we are still determining the details of the incident. We will release more information as it becomes available. As we work through this difficult situation, we ask for your patience, and that you keep those involved in your thoughts and prayers."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Amelia Earhart Plane Wreckage Possibly Spotted in Sonar Image

Photo by New York Times Co./Getty Images(WILMINGTON, Del.) -- A team of historical sleuths believe they have found a clue to what happened to famed aviator Amelia Earhart, claiming sonar may have picked up an image of her wrecked plane off an underwater cliff in the Pacific.

The sonar image is the right shape, size and in the right place in relationship to where some researchers believe the wreckage of Earhart’s doomed flight went down in 1937.

The image, taken during an expedition on July 15, 2012 by a company contracted by The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), depicts a narrow object, similar to the shape of an airplane wing, nearly 22 feet long lodged in the side of a steep underwater cliff off the coast of Nikularoro Island. The island, in what is today the Republic of Kiribati, is believed by some to be the site of Earhart’s crash.

“When you are looking for man-made objects in a natural environment, it is important to look for things that are different, and this is different. It is an anomaly unlike anything else in that underwater environment,” says Richard Gillespie, executive director of TIGHAR.

Gillespie and his team uploaded the images taken from the July 2012 expedition onto their online forum in March 2013 for the public to see. “It was somebody online who noticed the object and directed our attention to it,” says Gillespie.

“The object makes for the best target to check out with an underwater vehicle,” he said.

TIGHAR cannot confirm that this is a piece of Earhart’s wreckage, but the sonar image fits with what  Gillespie believes happened to Earhart.

“She landed the plane safely on a reef off Nikularoro Island,” says Gillespie. “The wreckage washed into the ocean with the high tide and broke up in the surf. There is archaeological evidence on that island that we believe indicates that Earhart was marooned there until her death several days later.”

Gillespie is hopeful that a future expedition to investigate the finding will be fruitful, but some are unconvinced.

Lou Foudray is the caretaker and historian of the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum in Atchinson, Kans., and is familiar with Gillespie’s work.

“This has been going on for years, it probably doesn’t mean anything. I’ve been to the Marshall Islands, I live in the museum, and I’ve heard testimony from Amelia Earhart’s family members, researchers, and historians and these things rarely become anything,” Foudray says.

Foudray believes Earhart survived the crash and lived the rest of her life secretly.

“There are testimonials from her friends that Earhart said before she took off for her final flight that when she came back she wanted to live a life away from the public eye. Of course, we will never know,” Foudray says.

Earhart was the first female to fly across the Atlantic Ocean and famously disappeared in the early morning of July 3, 1937 en route to Howland Island in the Pacific Ocean.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Plane Makes Belly Landing at Newark Airport

ABC News(NEWARK, N.J.) -- A U.S. Airways official confirmed that a turboprop plane carrying 31 passengers and three crew members was forced to make a belly landing in Newark, N.J., early Saturday morning due to a problem with the jet's landing gear.

The jet, operated by Piedmont Airlines, left Philadelphia before 11 p.m. on Friday.

According to U.S. Airways Spokesman Davian Anderson, tower operators attempted to help the pilot troubleshoot after the plane's landing gear remained retracted. After multiple attempts, they decided to execute a belly landing.

When the pilot attempted to land the plane without the use of landing gear, sparks flew, but he managed to keep the plane steady and on the runway.

All 34 people on board were taken off the plane and bused to the terminal.

U.S. Airways believes the issue was an isolated mechanical problem. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Ann Romney's Plane Forced to Make Emergency Landing

ABC News(DENVER) -- Ann Romney’s plane made an emergency landing Friday in Colorado after smoke filled the cabin because of an apparent electrical fire.

Romney, wife of the Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, was not harmed in the incident, spokeswoman Sarah Haley said.

Haley tweeted following the incident, “Don’t need any caffeine to wake me up now! #adventure.”

“A HUGE thank you to the crew and first responders for keeping us safe today!” she wrote.

The flight was heading from Omaha, Neb., where Mrs. Romney had attended fundraisers Friday afternoon, to Santa Monica, Calif.

In a recorded conversation between the plane and Denver International Airport’s flight tower, a man’s voice could be heard saying, “We have an electrical issue here and we’re going to declare an emergency.”

“We’ll probably need assistance here,” he said. “We got smoke in the cabin.”

Haley said the plane, a Canadair Challenger 600 regional jet, was surrounded by fire trucks when it landed at the Denver International Airport.

No media travels with Ann Romney on her flights, but she was accompanied by four staffers, including Haley, two U.S. Secret Service agents, and three crew members.

Romney and the other passengers were instructed to put their seat belts on during the emergency landing.

The FAA said in a statement said that a Canadair regional jet charter flight operated by World Wide Jet diverted to Denver Friday at about 2:40 p.m. MDT after the pilot reported smoke in the cockpit.

The aircraft landed safely on the runway and passengers exited the aircraft via stairs on a taxiway, according to the FAA.

The flight was at 40,000 feet when it turned around to make the emergency landing, according to Flight Aware.

Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul tweeted a photo from the scene, showing firefighters storming onto the plane after it landed.

Saul said that Mitt Romney spoke with his wife as soon as she was safely on the ground in Denver.

The Denver Fire Department, the Denver Police Department and Airport Operations responded to the call.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Plane Hoax Witness Said Ending Was 'Like Seal Team Six' -- "It was like Seal Team Six. The SWAT Team from Philly, they were pretty awesome," said Kurt Weber, a passenger on the Dallas-bound US Air flight that returned to Philadelphia Thursday because of a bomb hoax.

Weber, who was sitting in seat 4-D, got a front-row seat in the quick, surgical end to the bomb scare.

"We got on to the plane, it was a flight like every other flight I have taken, completely uneventful. And frankly, I took a nap. Before we taxied off the runway, I was asleep," Weber told ABC News.

"At some point, the pilot came over the intercom and told us he was having trouble with instruments and needed to return to Philly to evaluate the instruments," Weber said.

"At that point I was awake and I stayed awake," Weber said, "And as we landed there were a whole lot of emergency vehicles and police vehicles racing out and the girl next to me, said, 'I'm sure glad we are not going where those guys are going.' And then we wind up taxiing over to them."

"No one close to me had any inclination there was a threat," Weber, 54, said. Weber is a consultant for the Archery Trade Association and was on his way to a trade show when the drama occurred.

"These guys entered from the rear of the plane. Next thing I know it almost sounded like a stampede. Here are four Philadelphia SWAT guys, all in black with laser sights on their weapons, weapons drawn and focused on this guy.

"I can only imagine what SEAL Team Six was like. I wasn't in the military, but these guys were methodical and in seconds they had him in cuffs and on the ground," Weber said.

The targeted passenger, Christopher Shell, was taken into custody.

"Then the bomb techs got on the plane and the SWAT team took positions throughout the plane and authorities explained clearly to the passengers what had happened that led to the raid."

Weber said, "The pilot was calm, the flight attendants were calm and helpful."

"If you were to take a bad experience and try to paint it in as good a light as you could, these guys did it. And I have to give the passengers some credit. There was not a passenger on the plane who did not provide a full measure of cooperation. No one complained. No one got in the way," he said.

"I want to give these (SWAT) guys kudos. They really did a hell of a job," Weber said. "It turned out to be a hoax, but nobody knows that."

Shell was later cleared of any involvement in the threat and he had no explosives, authorities said. An ex-girlfriend of Shell and a man who is her current boyfriend are now in custody, police said.


Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


FAA Scolds iPad Bird-Strike Videographer

File photo. Tom Brakefield/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Even if you don’t remember the name Grant Cardone, surely you remember his video. Cardone was on the recent Delta flight hit by birds shortly after takeoff at New York’s John F. Kennedy airport.

While filming out of the window with his iPad, Cardone caught the sudden blur of birds pass his window, followed by the thud of them smashing into the plane’s engine. Use of electronics during take off is strictly prohibited by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

The FAA has now issued Cardone a warning letter encouraging him to comply with regulations on future flights.

“In cases where there is evidence that a passenger has used a personal electronic device on a flight at a time when it was not allowed, the FAA may elect to send a warning notice to the passenger to encourage compliance with regulations on future flights,” the FAA said in a statement.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Lauren Scruggs Rejects $200K Settlement in Propeller Accident

ABC News(DALLAS) -- Injured model and fashion editor Lauren Scruggs, who is recovering from a Dec. 3 plane propeller accident in which she lost her left hand and left eye, rejected a $200,000 settlement offer from the plane’s insurance company and will sue for more, according to court documents.

Legal documents obtained by Courthouse News Service that were filed by Scruggs in Dallas County, Texas, on March 12 claim that representatives from the insurance company verbally offered to pay her a total of $200,000 -- two sub-limit payments of $100,000 from two separate policies that covered the plane involved in the accident.

The 23-year-old model and fashion editor had just landed after viewing Christmas lights from above on Dec. 3 when she walked into a moving airplane propeller at a private airport north of Dallas.  The pilot, defendant Curt Richmond, left the propeller running while Scruggs exited the plane. According to a preliminary report released by the National Transportation Safety Administration in January, the pilot claims he tried to warn Scruggs and told her walk behind the airplane. The spinning propeller sliced off her hand and doctors were forced to remove her left eye weeks later.

Scruggs underwent intensive physical therapy, was fitted with a prosthetic eye last month and has met with prosthetic arm experts, according to her mother Cheryl Scruggs, who has documented her daughter's struggles and recovery on her blog.

In the court papers, Scruggs said that the plane's insurance company, Aggressive Insurance Services, explained that under the policies, the $100,000 sub-limit is the most they can pay out to a "passenger."

Scruggs believes that she was not a "passenger" because "she was not in the aircraft or getting in or out of it at the time of the incident," and should not be limited to the $100,000 passenger sub-limit.

Both policies define the term "passenger" as "...any person, other than the pilot, who is in the Aircraft or getting in or out of it."

While the insurance company holds that you remain a "passenger" after you exit the plane and are on the tarmac, Scruggs is challenging that definition. Scruggs has asked for the court for declaratory judgment -- to determine the interpretation of the term "passenger" and "getting out of" the plane, as well as cover court costs, attorney fees and "all other relief to which plaintiff is entitled."

Her lawyer had no immediate response to ABC News' request for comment.

Scruggs has picked up the pieces of her life since the accident. She resumed writing fashion commentary on her LoLo website, took to Twitter and shared photos of a family ski vacation last month.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Police: Teens Planned to Bomb School, Steal Plane

George Doyle/Stockbyte(ROY, Utah) -- School resumed as normal Thursday at Roy High School in Roy, Utah, only one day after police arrested two students who were allegedly planning to bomb their school assembly and make their getaway in a stolen plane.

Dallin Morgan, 18, and Joshua Hogan, 16, were arrested Wednesday after a female student received a troubling text message from one of the suspects.

“It was a text she felt was a threat and a danger and so she immediately went to the administration,” Roy Police Department spokeswoman Anna Bond told ABC News. Bond declined to reveal what the text message said because of the ongoing investigation.

Administrators contacted police, who executed four search warrants on the students’ homes and vehicles, and conducted a thorough sweep of the school.

"No explosives turned up during the search,” Bond said. “However, investigators found “maps of the school and information about security systems had been prepared with plans for an escape using a plane from the Ogden Hinckley Airport.

“We know for certain they had been planning this for at least three months,” she said.

Authorities also discovered the two boys had trained on flight simulation software in preparation for their getaway.

The FBI and its Regional Forensics Computer Laboratory will assist in analyzing any confiscated computers, but declined to comment on the case in a statement.

Morgan, who is an adult, is being held at the Weber County Jail. Hogan is being held at the Weber County Detention Center.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Woman Boards Plane with Gun in Her Bag

Hemera/Thinkstock(DALLAS) -- A passenger at the Dallas/Fort Worth International airport was able to board a plane with a gun inside her carry-on luggage Wednesday, but was taken off the aircraft and detained by security officials before the flight could take off.

The 65-year-old woman walked away from the security checkpoint, luggage in hand, and onto an American Airlines flight before screeners became aware of the bag's contents.

The woman will be charged with places weapons prohibited, according to ABC News Dallas affiliate WFAA-TV.

The Transportation Security Administration released the following statement:

At approximately 6:20 a.m. CST, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Officers at Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport checkpoint D-30 detected a firearm in a carry-on bag. The owner of the bag left the checkpoint before the screening process was complete and prior to surrendering the firearm. To ensure the safety of the traveling public, TSA worked with local law enforcement to locate the passenger and firearm before the plane departed. The passenger in question was taken into custody by Dallas Police and normal operations have resumed.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Lauren Scruggs Tragedy: Propeller Accident Victim Takes First Steps

ABC News(DALLAS) -- Lauren Scruggs' recovery from losing her left hand and damaging her head and face after walking into the propeller of a small plane is progressing quickly -- so much so that she's walking with the help of a physical therapist.

The model and fashion blogger walked down a hall on Wednesday at the Dallas hospital where she is being treated, according to her family. Halfway through her first walk since she was struck by the propeller Saturday night, Scruggs said the number 30. When her parents and twin sister asked what she meant, the 23-year-old said "steps." She had been counting the whole time.

Scruggs had just landed with a girlfriend after viewing Christmas lights from above in a small prop plane piloted by a family friend. Peter Wasserman and Luke Dixon are the two paramedics who responded to treat her after the accident that severed her hand and sliced the left side of her face and shoulder when she walked into the propeller.

"I could hear her as soon as I got out of the ambulance, so I was thinking maybe not that bad. ...I mean, hey, she's awake," Wasserman said. "Then we got over there and saw the extent of her injuries. It was one of those things that kind of just takes your breath away."

The veteran paramedics say they have never seen injuries like Scruggs'. They said that as they lifted her into the medical helicopter, they didn't have much hope.

"We knew her airway was OK, she was talking to us, answering our questions," Dixon said. "So it went to immediately to controlling her bleeding. That was our number one priority in trying to stabilize her."

"We honestly didn't expect her to survive," Wasserman said. "The extent of her injuries, the lacerations she had to her head, the skull fracture. …We thought for sure there would be significant brain damage. I was praying as soon as I got there."

Doctors treating Scruggs at Dallas' Parkland Hospital caution that the young woman is still at risk for infection, might still lose her left eye, and will almost certainly not have her model good looks again.

For her family, however, and the men who helped save her, that she's talking and now walking is nothing short of miraculous. Dixon said he is paying attention to Scruggs' recovery.

"A lot of times you don't find out what happens to your patients," he said. "In this instance, with such a significant injury, it's nice to know she's doing considerably better."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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