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China Airlines flight crew spots possible jet pack wearer hovering near LAX

LAX shutdown amid active shooter reports
Posted at 3:53 PM, Oct 14, 2020

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A China Airlines flight crew spotted what appeared to be a person flying a jet pack 6,000 feet above the ground near LAX Wednesday, less than two months after two separate airline crews reported seeing a jet pack in the Cudahy and South Gate areas.

China Airlines flight 006 was approaching LAX about 1:45 p.m. when the crew "reported seeing what appeared to be someone in a jet pack at an approximate altitude of 6,000 feet, about seven miles northwest of Los Angeles International Airport," the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The FAA is also investigating an Aug. 30 sighting of what appeared to be a person in a jet pack about 3,000 feet above the ground in the Cudahy and South Gate areas, but investigators have not been able to verify those reports, the FAA's Ian Gregor said Wednesday.

RELATED: FBI releases map of Sunday's 'guy in a jet pack' in Los Angeles

At the time of the August sightings, the pilot of American Airlines flight 1997 radioed the LAX tower to make the unusual report of somebody apparently flying at about 3,000 feet with a jet pack. The plane was flying northwest of the junction of the 710 and the Century (105) freeways, according to a map released by the FBI. More specifically, it appears the plane was in the area west of the 710, east of San Juan Avenue, north of Firestone Boulevard and south of Cudahy Park.

"Tower, American 1997. We just passed a guy in a jet pack," the pilot said on the August radio transmission. An air-traffic controller -- noticeably taken aback by the report -- responded, "American 1997, OK, thank you for the update. Left side or right side?"

"Off the left side," the pilot replied, "at maybe, uh, 300 yards or so, at our altitude."

At least one other pilot, aboard a Southwest Airlines flight that August, also spotted the unusual aviator: "Tower, we just saw the guy pass by us," the pilot reported.

The LAX tower alerted an inbound JetBlue pilot to beware of "a person with a jet pack reported 300 yards south of the L.A. final at about 3,000 feet." The pilot responded, "We heard and are definitely looking."

The bewildered air-traffic controller responded, "Only in L.A."

Further information about Wednesday's sighting was not immediately available from the FAA.