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'Unresponsive' US Couple Crashes Plane Near Jamaica

US fighter jets followed plane as far as Cuba
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 5, 2014 1:22 PM CDT
Updated Sep 5, 2014 5:45 PM CDT
US Plane Unresponsive Over Caribbean
Stock image.   (Shutterstock)

A real estate developer and his wife flew "apparently incapacitated" on a 1,700-mile flight today before crashing off the coast of Jamaica, reports the AP. Rescue teams from the US are investigating, but the Democrat and Chronicle reports that Larry and Jane Glazer, both 68, have died. They took off from upstate New York for Naples, Fla., this morning and soon contacted air traffic control with "an indication that is not correct in plane," according to a recording of their conversation, CNN reports. They asked only to descend to 18,000 feet before radio contact broke off. American fighter jets then followed the unresponsive plane, saying the windows were iced over and the plane's pilot could be seen hunched over, says a NORAD official.

The fighters pulled away when the single-engine turboprop entered Cuban airspace and flew aimlessly, crashing in the ocean about 14 miles north of Jamaica. "We are devastated by the tragic and sudden loss of our parents," their children say in a statement. "We understand that there are many questions yet to be answered about today's events, and we too are awaiting answers." Many such cases result from poor cabin pressurization, killing those on board due to lack of oxygen before the plane goes down, says an aviation expert. Indeed, a tweet from NORAD says the pilot or pilots may have been incapacitated due to "hypoxia," or lack of oxygen, the BBC reports. (Read more NORAD stories.)

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