Tue, Oct 18, 2005
"Unaware" Pilot Blunders Into Camp David Airspace Sunday
It's getting to be a familiar
refrain -- unaware pilot bumbles into a flight-restricted area and
is escorted by well-armed fighters to a landing at a nearby
airport. This time, the restricted airspace was over Camp David,
where the president was spending the weekend and the plane was a
Firefly (we're not sure of the exact type or manufacturer) and the
pilot... well, the Secret Service isn't releasing his name.
"We interviewed the pilot and he was unaware that he had
wandered into restricted airspace," Secret Service spokesman Eric
Zahren told the Frederick News-Post after the Firefly was escorted
out of the exclusion zone. It landed without (further) incident at
Frederick Municipal Airport, MD -- home of the AOPA.
The unnamed pilot wasn't charged in connection with the
incident. The aircraft is registered to Gregory Curtis of Raleigh,
NC. A woman answering the phone at that address told the News-Post
Curtis didn't own the aircraft and refused to give reporters her
name. End of conversation.
P-40, the restricted airspace over Camp David, changes when the
president decides to take the weekend off at the executive retreat.
When he's not there, it's 12,500 feet tall and has a radius of
three miles. When he is there, it's 18,000 feet high and five miles
around. Since 9/11 (presumably when people really started keeping
score on P-40), the Camp David restricted zone has been violated
167 times, according to the News-Post.
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