Airport Personnel Quickly Respond to Scene of Plane-Truck Incident

Driver of supply truck taken to hospital after striking Southwest plane parked at the gate

By Bob Kerlik

Published June 17, 2019

Read Time: < 1 min


A Pittsburgh International Airport fire rescue team responded quickly Monday after a provisioning truck struck a parked Southwest Airlines plane.

“It initially came in as a medical call on the ramp,” said Deputy Fire Chief Tom Bonura, the first airport responder on scene. “When I arrived on scene, I saw that it had also struck the plane.”

The Southwest truck, which stocks the plane with food, made contact with the aircraft parked at gate A1 just before 10:30 a.m. Monday, airport and airline officials said.

There were no other injuries and the driver was transported to a local hospital. Passengers deplaned and were rebooked on other flights. The aircraft was a Boeing 737-800 scheduled to operate Flight 157 to Denver with 174 passengers on board and six crew members.

In a statement, Southwest said their immediate concern was with the driver of the truck, an employee of the airline. Officials did not have an update on the driver’s condition.

The extent of the damage to the plane was unclear. As of late Monday afternoon, the aircraft was still parked at Gate A1. It will be towed to an airport hangar, where it will be evaluated by Southwest, airline officials said.

Airport firefighters are cross-trained to respond and offer aid in medical emergencies, as they did Monday, Bonura said.

“Safety is the top priority at Pittsburgh International,” he said. “We want to do everything we can to ensure we can assist in emergency situations. In this case, being able to render aid as well as having aircraft knowledge helps in knowing what steps need to be taken to ensure the safest outcome.”


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