August 31, 2016
By Lorra B.
After a low-altitude buzz-by over the Bank of America Stadium in downtown Charlotte on Monday, four Air Force jet pilots find themselves grounded, according to The Charlotte Observer.
Taking part in a navigational training session from Charlotte to Moody Air Force Base in Georgia, the A-10 ‘Warthogs,’ like all planes flying over busy city areas, are instructed to remain “1,000 feet above the highest obstacle,” according to Federal Aviation officials.
On Monday, however, an A-10 dove very low over many buildings including the Bank of America Stadium where the Carolina Panthers were practicing.
The incident caught players and bystanders off guard. Alarmed, several onlookers posted to social media.
“… fighter jets just buzzed by my window of the high rise bldg I work in – uptown Charlotte NC. Scary!” wrote Julie H. Saunders on Twitter.
Both Moody officials and the FAA stated that they are looking into the incident but air traffic controllers said they had approved the request made by the pilots to fly over the stadium after departing from Charlotte Douglas on their return flight to Georgia.
“The aircraft that buzzed Charlotte were part of the 74th fighter squadron of the 23rd Wing,” reports The Charlotte Observer, and are referred to as the ‘Warthog’ because of the fierce look of the plane, some displaying painted teeth on its nose.
Twitter, was abuzz with news of the A-10’s actions.
OK, so it wasn’t our four pilots buzzing the Bank of America Stadium, but it was worth showing!
The four Buzz-by pilots, until the investigation is complete, will be “restricted from flight duties.”
By Lorra B.