Skip to comments.FAA reviewing football fly-over
Posted on 11/05/2007 4:33:19 AM PST by Rb ver. 2.0
A 17-year-old Hopewell High student was apparently acting on a dare when he did a fly-over prank at a Hopewell High football game Friday, at one point dipping below the stadium lights.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools officials said Sunday that the teen pilot and two teen passengers flew the length of the field three times around 8 p.m. The plane reportedly came within feet of a flag pole.
On the final pass, a pair of tennis shoes and a football dropped from the single-engine Cessna 172 into the end zone, officials said.
The pilot, who apparently broke multiple federal aviation laws, is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration, Huntersville police and CMS.
My immediate reaction was that we were going to have a terrorist act of some sort, said Vincent Bud Cesena, head of CMS law enforcement, who was among the 4,000 people in the stands.
Then, as he circled, you saw that it was kids in the plane, and I was hoping it that it was just some kind of prank. I was thinking to myself: Should I empty the stands and risk someone being trampled or see what happens? I knew for sure someone would get hurt if I emptied the stands.
Witnesses say the plane came within 75 feet of an embankment at the field at the school on Beatties Ford Road in Huntersville.
The plane flew low enough that Cesena and several Huntersville police officers were able to take down the tail numbers and call them into Charlotte/Douglas International Airport.
It was quickly identified as being rented from Lincoln County Regional Airport. Thats where Lincoln County sheriffs deputies were waiting when it landed.
Detained at the airport for questioning were the 17-year-old pilot who had rented the plane and his passengers, another 17-year-old Hopewell student and an 18-year-old Hopewell graduate.
No charges had been filed as of late Sunday, officials said.
It was a dare, Cesena said. They knew they were very much breaking the law. Hes a registered pilot and knows the consequences of this. FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said that if it is proved that the pilot broke rules, his pilots license could be suspended or revoked.
The FAA requires an altitude of at least 1,000 feet when flying over a large group of people. Dropping the shoes and the football from the plane also may have been against FAA rules, Bergen said.
In addition, CMS officials are considering disciplinary action, said CMS spokeswoman Nora Carr.
If it can be proven that lives were endangered, those involved could face a minimum of a 10-day suspension and possible expulsion. Its a very serious thing, so I know a lot of folks are very, very concerned and are taking it seriously, said Carr.
Does that count as a field goal or a touch back?
There’s got to be video of this somewhere.
Remember how proud you were when he did his first solo?
Wow, 10 whole days suspension!!! The horrors!!!
All three should be spending the next 10 years behind bars.
A 17 year old can rent an airplane, to fly at night without an adult?
Can he even do that with a car?
Ten years behind bars? For a triple fly over?
Glad I don’t live in your world. A hefty fine, paid for by the kid doing community service, and a suspension of his pilots license ‘till he is 21 would suffice...
If NFL rules, they'd be cited for celebrating in the endzone.
My nephews had their pilot's licenses when they were teens, but I find it odd that you can rent a plane (as a minor) but you can't rent an car until you're 25.
“Well, as of this moment, they’re on DOUBLE SECRET PROBATION! “
It’s more likely that these young men will go to jail than that they’ll be expelled from Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. They’ve got students there with multiple assault arrests, drug dealer, rapists ...
We were perfect little Angels.
Well, I wasn’t.
I’ll bet the friend did a little of the “I bet you can’t”, “Yes, I can”, “No, you can’t” stuff.
Long weekends at community service suspension of the license for a few years should fit the crime.
The question is, was it a Double-Dog Black-Eyed Dare, because if it was the pilot really had no choice in the matter, and should face no punishment.
I’d sign these kids up for the Air Force tactical fighter squadron. These kids have the right stuff!
I'm sure we weren't breaking any laws when we did those donuts in the middle of Athleton's field the week before our away game there. 'Course, that was back in the day when student beater cars still had rear wheel drive...
Sounds like they lost possession of the ball in their own end zone. Did the other team recover?
Grr...went too fast for the purposes of my own joke. Shoulda been, “did the ball go out of bounds after?”
Ten whole years and nobody got hurt? Thats extreme.Suspend his licence for a couple of years maybe and I think that is way too much.Dont worry the FAAAAAAAA will make him wish he had never been born.
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