Airplane theft highlights security issues

victoria@aviationnews-online.com
By victoria@aviationnews-online.com August 13, 2018 14:33

Airplane theft highlights security issues

The theft of an empty Horizon Air Q400 aircraft by an airline worker last week has raised questions about the safety and security of airports.

Richard Russell had worked for more than three years for Horizon as a ground service agent and had clearance to be among aircraft, but is not thought to have been a licensed pilot. He took the empty plane from a maintenance area before taking off and flying the aircraft, performing a series of manoeuvres, for 75 minutes before he crash landed in a small island killing himself. Two F-15C aircraft had been scrambled from Portland but didn’t fire on the plane, according to officials.

Gary Beck, CEO of Horizon Air, said it wasn’t clear how the man knew to start the engine, which requires a series of switches and levers.

victoria@aviationnews-online.com
By victoria@aviationnews-online.com August 13, 2018 14:33