The Plane Touched Down. Suddenly, a Man Appeared

Southwest jetliner kills adult male on runway in Austin, Texas
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 8, 2020 7:17 AM CDT
The Plane Touched Down. Suddenly, a Man Appeared
This July 17, 2019, file photo shows Southwest Airlines planes at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

A man was struck and killed by a commercial jet landing on a runway at an airport in Austin, Texas, authorities said. The pilot of Southwest Airlines Flight 1392, a Boeing 737 arriving from Dallas, reported seeing a person on Runway 17R at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. The sighting occurred shortly after the jet touched down at 8:12pm Thursday, according to a statement from the Federal Aviation Administration, the AP reports. Southwest officials say the pilot maneuvered in an attempt to avoid the man, per CBS News, which has pictures of the damaged plane. The FAA said the driver of an airport operations vehicle later found the man on the runway.

He was pronounced dead at the scene by emergency responders. No one on board was hurt. An airport spokesman said officials don't believe the man was supposed to be on the runway at the time; Austin police say he wasn't wearing any type of airport uniform. But they’re working to confirm that, as well as his identity, and determine the events leading up to his death. The airport said in posts on Twitter that it's working with the Austin Police Department on the investigation and that maintenance crews worked early Friday preparing to reopen the runway.

(More Southwest Airlines stories.)

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