Washington, Aug 11: An Alaska Airlines plane was stolen by a 29 -year-old man from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Washington state and conducted an unauthorized takeoff and within minutes it crashed into an island in Puget Sound on Friday night.
The person believed to be an airline mechanic stole the Horizon Air Q400 and the crash occurred because the person was “doing stunts in air or lack of flying skills,” the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department said on Twitter.
The plane was piloted by a Pierce County man and crashed on Ketron Island, the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office said. There appear to have been no passengers on the 76-seat plane.
The sheriff’s office said that “this is not a terrorist incident” and that the pilot was a mechanic from an unknown airline. The unauthorized pilot was described by the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department as a “suicidal male.”
Male is confirmed a suicidal male. Acted alone he is 29 year old Pierce county residence . We are working back ground on him now.
— Pierce Co Sheriff (@PierceSheriff) August 11, 2018
Airport officials say in a tweet Friday night that an airline employee “conducted an unauthorized takeoff without passengers.”The plane was chased by military aircraft near the airport.
Pierce County Sheriff’s Office said that they are working with FBI and Military.
The U.S. Coast Guard also dispatched a 45-foot vessel to the crash scene, Petty Officer Ali Flockerzi said.