Seattle airport crash news: Airport posts update after employee crashes stolen plane
Seattle Airport has experienced chaos this morning after a plane crash which followed an employee stealing an aircraft.
The 29 year old employee, a ground service worker who worked for Horizon Air, according to CNN, took the plane at 8pm local time.
He was in the air for an hour before crashing into Ketron Island. The crash was said to be fatal.
The airport was closed for an hour and a half during the incident before re-opening at 9:30pm local time.
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, also known as Sea-Tac Airport for short, posted an update on Twitter.
The update read explained what had happened, adding that the airport was now running as normal.
It read: “An airline employee conducted an unauthorized takeoff without passengers at Sea-Tac; aircraft has crashed in south Puget Sound. Normal operations at Sea-Tac Airport have resumed.”
In a Twitter update, the local police establishment, Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, said the victim was known to be “suicidal”.
They wrote: “Stolen horizon airplane crashed into Ketron island. Preliminary info is that a mechanic from unknown airlines stole plane.
“Was doing stunts in air or lack of flying skills caused crash into Island.
“Male is confirmed a suicidal male. Acted alone he is 29 year old Pierce county residence. We are working back ground on him now.”
A Twitter user, @zhelm05, live-tweeted the incident after unsuccessfully trying to board a flight which was then delayed.
He wrote: “STORY TIME: Sitting on my plane at the Seattle airport about to take off. Then, through the plane intercom, get told we have to go back to our terminal because an employee is trying to HIJACK another plane next to us.”
He later wrote: “Update: still sitting on plane in the terminal. Pilot notified that the airport is back up and running.
“FAA issued a no flight restriction earlier to force all flight east. Still no word on where the hijacked plane is.”
Constance von Muehlen, the chief operating officer of the airport, released a statement.
She said: “Our hearts are with the families of the individual aboard as well as all of our Alaska Air and Horizon Air employees.”
An audio recording from the cockpit of the plane later revealed his final words of the employee before he died.
“I’m not ready to bring it down yet but holy smokes I need to stop looking at the fuel because it’s going down quick.
“This is probably jail time for life, huh? I’ve got a lot of people that care about me.
“It’s going to disappoint them to hear that I did this. I would like to apologise to each and every one of them. Just a broken guy, got a few screws loose, I guess.”