Skip to comments.F-16s Pursue Cessna Stolen by Flight Student - Plane Could Be Shot Down If Deemed a Threat
Posted on 04/06/2009 7:17:48 PM PDT by MindBender26
Over the skies of the Midwest, two F-16 fighter jets are escorting a private Cessna 172 aircraft stolen from a flight school in Ontario, Canada, whose pilot has been unresponsive to multiple requests that he establish communications with ground controllers.
The plane entered American airspace over Michigan's Upper Peninsula at 3:25 p.m. today and has been trailed by the military aircraft since 4:43 p.m. as it has flown over Minnesota, south through Wisconsin, Illinois and Missouri. The aircraft went past St. Louis flew south over eastern Missouri towards Arkansas. At one point, the Wisconsin state capitol building in Madison was evacuated as a precaution as the plane flew over the city.
In a statement released later today, the college said it was working with local police "to recover the airplane and identify the individual flying the airplane."
Details are scarce as to the identity of the pilot, but NORAD spokesman Michael Kucharek said the pilot is a student at the flight school and that his motives are unknown. The F-16 pilots have made visual contact with the pilot and "know that the person that's flying the aircraft knows that the [F-16] aircraft are there, [he] is unresponsive to their non-verbal directions and is not in contact with the FAA controllers," Kucharek said.
FAA officials also said the Cessna's pilot has not responded to their repeated efforts to hail him on all radio frequencies.
When asked if the fighter jets might have to shoot down the aircraft if it shows hostile intent, Kucharek told ABC News that could happen. "NORAD pilots, once authorized by higher authority, are authorized to use everything within their power to protect U.S. citizens, up to and including lethal force," he said.
(Excerpt) Read more at abcnews.go.com ...
The single engine Cessna 172 landed on U.S. Highway 60 in Missouri around 9 p.m. CT, and according to sources the pilot ran from the plane.
There were no reports of injuries on the ground.
I’m keeping my assessment of his religion to myself.
Thanks for the update.
At least it wasn’t flown into a building.
The pilot ran away on foot? You mean they had no police or anyone waiting for him to land?
Yep, it landed, here’s the latest http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=7273710&page=1
This guy’s a great pilot-—he squeezed 5.5 hours of flying time out of one hour of fuel.
Couldn’t they still pursue him on foot using the F-16’s?
I love watching those videos when they blast away at terrorists running away from a vehicle in Iraq...
How much damage could a Cessna 172 do?
Hello, does anyone remember 9/11? OK, I realize Obama doesn’t, but what exactly do you have to do with a stolen plane to get anyone to take it seriously? I mean, they are evacuating government office buildings, so they have to suspect it’s a threat. What about just blowing the effing thing out of the air? #1 removes the threat #2 will serve as a deterrent to other knuckleheads whose intent may be to get on the 11 o’clock news.
building I never understood that word. Does that mean its still under construction? Why don’t they call them Built’s?
He was laughing his head off as he ran away, so htey decided to use B-52s for an arc light.
Laura Brown of the Federal Aviation Administration said the Cessna 172 landed on a dirt road at Ellsinore, Mo., near Poplar Grove and the pilot ran away.
F-16 isn't ~exactly~ the best tool for that, a helicopter would be better ;~)
Whatever. He stole a plane, eventually was able to land it, and then ran from authorities. He was up to no good and now every one knows we’re not just going to shoot them down next time.
A little hard for police to know where a plane is going to land far enough in advance to stage cars there.
A federal law enforcement official told CNN the pilot is a naturalized Canadian citizen, but declined to give his name or country of origin. Canadian officials have received some information that the pilot is “not a happy individual,” the official said.
English is not a logical language.
Cesna 172 flown into a building in Tampa in 1/02
You said — Frm.Microsoft Flight Simulator X Pilot, wanted to fly “the real thing”?
Ya know..., I completely forgot, but I used to crash into the World Trade Buildings in New York quite regularly.... LOL... (on my flight simulator...). That was back in the 80s...
[... I finally got rid of the program when I realized how many hours I was spending on it... :-) ... ]
But wouldn’t the F16s be sending signals to the ground letting them know where he is?
CNN : Pilot arrested
Pilot was born in Turkey; moved to Canada in 2008.
Bets on age/ethnicity?
I’m gonna say 18yo who just got a pic text from his girlfriend?
Not. I think this was to probe our intercept tactics.
A federal law enforcement official told CNN the pilot is a naturalized Canadian citizen, but declined to give his name or country of origin. Canadian officials have received some information that the pilot is not a happy individual, the official said.
WHAT does that even MEAN?!
“Naturalized?” Uh-huh. Hows about we catch his sorry butt and.... He has NO business here in the US, whatever he was doing, whatever he was up to.
Could very easily have been a “test flight” for a later Terrorist attack of some sort. And it’s for sure they know the US WON’T shoot them down immediately.
NOT a good development.
I would have to agree with your assessment.
I guess it’s a perspective issue. When you are in a plane, you could literally go anywhere, miles, in minutes. The airplane has the advantage of speed and unlimited options.
A cop would be lucky to choose just the right section of road to be on.... the pilot didn’t even have to pick a road.
I guess so.
That Cessna really did a number on that building didn’t it? : )
Did it break more than two windows?
The FAA will hire him in some consultantcy.
“...he squeezed 5.5 hours of flying time out of one hour of fuel.”
This has gotta be some kind of record overkill for Norad; they could handle this situation with a small helicopter. At its extreme range (prob’ly ran out of gas over Missouri), the 172 could barely carry much beyond the weight of the pilot.
All the F16 pilots had to do was fly in front of the Cessna and tell the police where the wreckage is.
The impact was felt all the way to the second cubicle.
An F-101 came up alongside, flashed his lights and we came up on 121.5. “Mainsail Low Control East” told us to land at Sebring. We did.
Two Air Police cars came, checked our licenses and medicals, and immediately said “They're not the ones” and were about to leave when we said “You sent an F-101 after little old us?”
There reply was, “Not one. There were two. Like gang members, they always travel in twos. You were in the other one’s gunsights the entire time.”
And we al know the only time they decline to give the country of origin, that country is a muslim one.
Can an F-16 actually remain airborne at the speeds that the Cessna operates at?
Cessnas are sloooow.
You got a point there. They’d probably have to do some serious circling of the target. the Cessna would then out-distance them, fuel-wise, maybe, but what do I know about such things.
Pilot was born in Turkey; moved to Canada in 2008.
One of thousands. It’s only a matter of time. They see weakness and they smell blood. They are on the move.
There was a plane that flew past the best of the best of Russias SAMs all the way to Red Square, and some years ago a plane actually flew onto the grounds of the Whitehouse causing minor damage to the facade.
A small aircraft like this can evade detection and could deliver a weapon such as a tactical backpack nuke or a dirty bomb or a biological weapon.
Yes they can. Or, they can swoop around and be at your six all day.
The F-16 pilots should have showered him in chaff. Then shower him in flares.
No reaction? Afterburner him.
Then take him out.
But, they gotta follow orders and all that.
Cessna 400 is fast.............................. 238 kts @ 10,000 amsl
okay. granted. not all Cessnas are slow.
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