Six dead as vintage planes collide at Dallas Air Show

Dallas (AP) — 6 dead after 2 historic military planes Crashed on Saturday and hit the ground afternoon during the Dallas Air Show, officials said.

“A total of six people died in yesterday’s air show crash over Dallas, according to the Dallas County coroner,” said Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins. tweeted on sundayHe said authorities are continuing to work to identify victims.

Paramedics rushed to the crash site at Dallas Executive Airport, about 10 miles (16 km) from downtown Dallas. News footage from the scene showed the crumpled wreckage of the plane on the lawn area around the airport. The Dallas Fire and Rescue Service told the Dallas Morning News that no injuries were reported on the ground.

Anthony Montoya saw two planes collide.

“I was just standing there. I was completely shocked and in disbelief,” said Montoya, 27, who attended the airshow with friends. “Everyone around me was gasping. Everyone was in tears. Everyone was in shock.”

Authorities did not say how many people were on board each plane, but Hank Coates, president of the company that organized the air show, said one of the aircraft, a B-17 Flying Fortress bomber, had said it usually has a crew of four to five people. He has one plane, he’s a P-63 King Cobra fighter, and he’s one pilot.

Coates of the Memorial Air Force, which owned the plane, said the plane had no paying customers. Their aircraft are flown by highly trained volunteers, many of whom are retired pilots, he said.

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson said the National Transportation Safety Board took control of the crash site, with local police and fire departments providing assistance.

“The video is heartbreaking,” Johnson said on Twitter.

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the plane crashed at around 1:20 p.m. The collision occurred during the Memorial Air Force Wings Show over Dallas.

Pilot Victoria Yeager, widow of famed Air Force test pilot Chuck Yeager, was also on the show. She didn’t see the crash, but she did see the burning wreckage.

“It was shattered,” said Yeager, 64, of Fort Worth.

“I hoped everyone got out, but I knew they didn’t,” she said of the passengers.

The B-17 was a cornerstone of U.S. air power during World War II, a massive four-engine bomber used in daytime air raids against Germany. A US fighter, the King Cobra was used primarily by the Soviet military during the war. According to Boeing, most B-17s were scrapped at the end of World War II, with only a handful remaining today, mostly displayed in museums and air shows.

Several videos posted on social media appeared to show a fighter plane dove into the bomber, which immediately crashed to the ground and launched a large ball of fire and smoke.

“It was really terrifying to watch,” said Aubrey Ann Young, 37, of Leander. Texas saw the crash. Her children were inside the hangar with her father when the incident happened. “I’m still trying to figure it out.”

In a video Young uploaded to his Facebook page, a woman next to Young can be heard crying and screaming hysterically.

Air show safety, especially for older military aircraft, has been a concern for years. In 2011, his P-51 Mustang crashed into a crowd in Reno, Nevada, killing 11 people. 2019, A bomber crashed in Hartford, Connecticut. killed seven people. The NTSB said it had investigated 21 accidents since 1982 involving World War II-era bombers that resulted in 23 fatalities.

Wings Over Dallas bills itself as “America’s World War II air show,” according to the website promoting the event. By appointment, guests were to see more than 40 World War II-era aircraft. Saturday afternoon’s schedule of flight demonstrations included a “bomber parade” and a “fighter escort” featuring a B-17 and his P-63.

Arthur Alan Wolk is a Philadelphia aviation attorney who has performed at air shows for 12 years. After watching a video of the air show and hearing a maneuver described as “a bomber on a parade,” Wolk told his Associated Press on Sunday that the P-63 his pilot violated the basic rules of flying in formation. said.

“He got mad at the leader,” Wolk said. “It prevents him from measuring distance and position. If you cannot see who you should platoon with, the risk of collision is very high and such merging is not permitted.”

He said, “I don’t blame anyone. Whenever possible, the air shows, the pilots, and the aircraft that fly there are safe. Air shows are one of America’s biggest spectator events, A tragedy like this rarely happens.”

Wark said that flying in an air show setting required extensive training and discipline. The P-63 pilot’s air show qualifications are unknown.

The FAA has also launched an investigation, officials said. Six dead as vintage planes collide at Dallas Air Show

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