Local/State

PHL control tower: 'Vehicle on runway'

Thursday, March 01, 2012
Realtime Audio of PHL invasion Kenneth Mazik

Air traffic controllers are trained to keep their cool under pressure and that's exactly what they tried to do as police pursued a runaway driver.

Raw video of PHL airfield chase

Tower: Airport, vehicle on runway niner right.

The transmissions were flying in and out of the control tower at Philadelphia International Airport once pilots and air traffic controllers spotted the speeding Jeep, later determined to be driven by 24-year-old Kenneth Mazik of Chadds Ford.

Tower: Airport 10 Philly, we got a rogue vehicle on the airport. It's at the intersection of sierra and 2-7 right, at the approach to runway 2-7 right, right now.

The tower worked quickly to stop commercial airliners from taking off and landing.

Jeep invades airfield at Philadelphia International Airport

Controller: Wisconsin 4086...everybody on niner left it's gonna be a delay. You guys can shut down if you need to. We've got a rogue vehicle driving around on the airport. We're not talking to 'em. We can catch 'em.

We could even hear police on the radio as they pursued the fleeing jeep.

Police: Airport tower, permission to cross runway A in pursuit of vehicle.

Tower: Airport 10 approved. Cross the runways. Everybody stop for now.

Unclear of the driver's intentions, pilots did their best to steer clear of him.

Realtime recording of airfield invasion

Pilot: I don't trust this guy. You okay if we pull off the runway here in case he comes right at us?

And once it was all over, we could hear the relief in one controller's voice as he recounted the wild pursuit on several runways.

Tower: He went down nine right, nine left, 617, the only runway he didn't hit was 8.

Pilot: (laughter)

Tower: He must have been going about over 100 miles per hour.

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Tags:
philadelphia international airport, local/state, kenneth moton
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