F-16 Fighter Jet Intercepts Small Plane that Flew Into Restricted New York City Airspace

by Matthew Memrick
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On Tuesday, an F-16 drew looks as it intercepted a small plane and escorted it out of restricted New York City airspace.

The plane, a small Cessa 182, flew in around 2 p.m. as the United Nations General Assembly met. U.S. President Joe Biden gave his first address at the event.

North American Aerospace Defense Command reported on the incident, saying the pilot mistakenly entered the airspace. The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the incident, a NORAD spokesperson told Fox News. 

The F-16 fighter pilot guided the plane out of the area. It landed safely a half-hour later.

The fighter jet caused somewhat of a scene. Car alarms on the streets below went off, and residents felt slightly alarmed at the sight of the plane.

People took to Twitter to video the plane as it did loops around the Big Apple’s skyline.

“Very low, very loud turns from what looked like an #f16 #nyc to fast for my camera…got some sound!” wrote one Twitter user. “Set off a lot of car alarms, not normal.”

Another wrote, “(F-16) fighter jet casually breaking the sound barrier over nyc on a (Tuesday) afternoon, very normal stuff.”

Jet Brought Back Memories of Lidle Plane

New York City residents have had multiple incidents when it comes to planes.

With the recent Sept. 11 anniversary this month, other incidents have come over the years.

But most recently, a small plane crashed into a New York City apartment building and two men died on Oct. 6, 2006.

One of the men was Cory Lidle, a New York Yankees baseball pitcher. His flight instructor also died in the crash.

The crash injured twenty-one people, including eleven firefighters.

One of the apartment residents, Ilana Benhuri, was hospitalized for a month with severe burns incurred when the post-impact fire burned up her apartment.

National Transportation Safety Board officials said the pilot likely could not have turned sharply in a light wind, which may have led to the crash.

At the time, Air Force officials from the U.S. and Canada scrambled fighter jets over numerous cities as a security precaution. 

Restricted airspace

Usually, individual planes cannot fly into cities without permission.

According to Bold Method, there are some instances when a plane can get approval, but the decision is up to the FAA or air traffic control center in an area. 

The (U.K.) Sun put together a list of places where small aircraft could not fly over.

Flying over Disney World has been forbidden since 2003. With that park, airspace is limited in the 3,000 feet above two of Disney’s parks. 

Tibet and its mountainous region is another place on that no-fly list for planes. There are not enough places to make emergency landings.

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