Skip to comments.Trigger-Happy Pilot? Gun Discharged Midflight
Posted on 03/24/2008 12:39:21 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd
A US Airways pilot accidentally discharged his gun in the cockpit during a flight from Denver to Charlotte, N.C., according to the Transportation Safety Administration.
The Airbus A319 landed safely after the incident Saturday and without any injuries to the 124 passengers on board, a spokesperson for the TSA told ABCNEWS.com today.
The TSA said the passengers were unaware that a gun had been fired in the cockpit.
The pilot, who both the TSA and US Airways declined to identify, was a member of the Federal Flight Deck Officer program, an initiative put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The initiative allows authorized members of cockpit crews to carry weapons on board.
"There are thousands of federal flight deck officers and this has never happened before," said the spokesperson. "This was probably a bit of a fluke."
The Federal Flight Deck Officer program provides training to eligible crew members on the use of firearms, use of force, legal issues, defensive tactics, the psychology of survival and program standard operating procedures, according to TSA's Web site.
Flight deck officers must requalify for the program twice a year; the pilot involved in Saturday's incident requalified in November 2007.
The gun went off in the plane's cockpit but spokespeople for both US Airways and TSA declined to comment on the position of the weapon when it was discharged, citing an ongoing investigation. The TSA also declined to say what the bullet struck.
"Federal flight deck officers are authorized and trained to carry their firearms on their person inside the flight deck of an aircraft," said the TSA spokesperson.
The weapon used by the officers are H&K 40-caliber semiautomatics.
As for the pilot's future employment with US Airways, the spokesperson for the airline told ABCNEWS.com that it's against company policy to divulge any information about the employee.
The US Airways aircraft has been grounded since the incident, pending the investigation.
No bias it that headline is there? Nope....none whatsoever.
He was just testing the MythBuster’s story...
H&K .40 — I assume a USP, which has a manual safety/decocker and a heavy first trigger pull in DA.
How the hell do you have an AD with that? I immediately thought Glock when I read the story....
I said I wanted BLACK coffee!!! BLAM!
Another desperate attempt by Liberals in anticipation of the SCOTUS ruling that gun-bearing is a personal right.
I thought Glock, too. I used to own a Glock but I had to sell it because it kept crawling out the front door and firing rounds off at random.
I bet that was really noisy!
They were just board in the cockpit and wanted to have some fun. :-)
Seriously though this does reflect badly on all pilots with guns.
Just watch how this all comes out with calls to remove guns from the cockpits because pilots aren’t responsible enough to handle them.
But they are responsible enough to pilot the planes.
Or just an attempt to show that US Airways employs idiots as pilots.
None of mine do that. You should call the factory.
What an idiot.
Aside from why the heck was he playing with it but What did the bullet hit and why didn’t anyone on the plane hear it?
I would say he was playing with it to impress one of the stewardesses but then the image of the typical flight attendant came to mind.
It was probably the result of a deep philosophical question: If a gun goes off at 36,00 feet, does anyone hear it?
I’m assuming he notified Range Control about the negligent discharge and that his platoon sergeant took appropriate action with regards to remedial PT and an eardrum stress test.
“As for the pilot’s future employment with US Airways, the spokesperson for the airline told ABCNEWS.com that it’s against company policy to divulge any information about the employee.”
Reminds me of the stories about US naval vessels running aground. You’re pretty much finished, if you’re the Admiral in charge.
I don't know, but if he had shot out the front glass, I'll bet people on the plane would suspect something wasn't right. ;-)
This isn’t possible. We all know that when a gun is fired in an airplane, it will blow a hole that opens up and sucks everybody out.
Mythbusters debunked that one a while back.