Suicidal worker steals, crashes passenger plane
A Horizon Air plane similar to the one involved in the incident (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SEATTLE (KSAZ) -- Authorities in the Seattle area have confirmed the crash of a stolen commercial airline plane Friday night.
According to the unverified Twitter profile of the Pierce County Sheriff's Department, the plane was stolen by a mechanic from an unknown airline company, based on preliminary information.
The plane, which PCSD identified as belonging to Horizon Air, crashed into Ketron Island. The plane was chased by two military F-15s that were scrambled out of Portland, and had no passengers onboard at the time
The plane crash, according to fire officials in the area, resulted in a fire that has since been upgraded to a 2nd alarm response.
PCSD officials also identified the person involved as a 29-year-old male who lives in Pierce County. While authorities did not release the man's name, they say the man was suicidal, and officials said Friday night the man is likely dead.
PCSD officials also said this is not a terrorist incident.
Officials with Alaska Airlines confirmed the plane as a Bombardier Q400 that belongs to Horizon Air. The plane had an unauthorized takeoff from Sea-Tac Airport at around 8:00 p.m., and then crashed.
In a video posted to Alaska Airlines' verified YouTube page late Friday night, Horizon Air's Chief Operating Officer, Constance von Muehlen, said the plane was taken by a Horizon Air employee, and no other passenger or crew were onboard.
According to officials with PCSD, Federal agencies will lead the investigation.