Investigators are trying to determine what happened to the pilot of a single-engine airplane flying from Wisconsin to Manassas, Virginia. The plane continued over the Delmarva peninsula and crashed in the Atlantic Ocean.
Photo courtesy cirrusaircraft.com
The Coast Guard reports that a small airplane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean more than 50 miles southeast of Chincoteague Island today after the pilot failed to land as scheduled in Manassas, Virginia.
The Coast Guard says it received notification around 2:40 p.m. that a single-engine aircraft with only the pilot aboard failed to land at Manassas Regional Airport as scheduled.
The airplane remained at an altitude of approximately 13,000 feet and continued into restricted airspace in the vicinity of Washington, D.C.
Two F-16 fighter jets came alongside the plane to investigate. The pilots observed the pilot to be unconscious in the cockpit. The F-16 airmen escorted the airplane on its course over the Eastern Shore of Virginia until it eventually ran out of fuel and crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.
A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Air Station Elizabeth City, NC along with the Cutter Beluga, homeported in Virginia Beach, were sent to where the plane crashed in the ocean.
Flightaware shows the aircraft departing Waukesha, Wis. around 9:43 a.m. (central time), headed for Manassas, Va. The flight path ends in the Atlantic Ocean.
See the DCNewsroom blog for more details.
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Alan Henney is a lifelong Rehoboth Beach seasonal visitor although born and raised in Washington, D.C. He worked several years in D.C. TV news and has been writing the “Rehoboth Weekend Update” for more than 15 years. He earned a BA in journalism with honors and an MBA in computer info systems, both from George Washington Univ. He is also a diehard radio geek. If you have a news story or question, please e-mail him at email@example.com