The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) confirmed on April 29, 2020 that actor Harrison Ford is under investigation as a result of an aviation error that occurred at Hawthorne Airport in Los Angeles, California, Associated Press reported.
The incident in question occurred on April 24, 2020, when the small plane Ford was piloting crossed a runway when another plane attempted to land. The Ford representative, who told Star Wars radio instructions “listened” to Air Traffic Control (ATC) alum to stay behind, said in a statement obtained by CNN.
“He immediately acknowledged the error and apologized to ATC for the error. The purpose of the flight was to maintain currency and competition on the plane”. They added: “No one was injured and there was never a danger of collision.”
An FAA spokesperson told CNN the two planes were approximately 3,600 feet apart at the time.
This is not the first time that Ford, who celebrated his 77th birthday in July 2020, has been involved in a plane crash. So while we wait for the FAA to complete its investigation, let’s review every other time the Witness star has faced problems from his lifelong hobby.
Harrison Ford called himself a “schmuck” after the runway accident
Harrison Ford was involved in another aviation problem in 2017 when he reportedly flew his private plane “dangerously close to a taxiing airliner after mistakenly landing on a taxiway instead of the runway he was authorized on” according to People. American Airlines Flight 737, which was carrying 110 passengers and a crew of six at the time, managed to safely exit John Wayne Airport in California moments after the incident, the outlet said.
In audio recordings released by the Federal Aviation Authority, Harrison called himself a “schmuck” when he spoke to the air traffic controller about the error, saying he had been “distracted and concerned about the turmoil of another plane” when it happened, by USA TODAY.
When the air traffic controller said “it wasn’t a big deal,” Ford replied, “it’s a big deal for me.”
The FAA decided that Ford would not face disciplinary action for the incident, as confirmed by his attorney, Stephen Hofer, in a statement. “Mr. Ford retains his pilot certificate without restriction,” said Hofer. “In closing the matter, the agency acknowledged Mr. Ford’s long history of compliance with federal aviation regulations and his cooperative attitude during the investigation.”
Harrison Ford was involved in a light aircraft accident
Arguably the most terrifying incident Harrison Ford suffered as a pilot occurred in 2015 when his old World War II plane (pictured above) crashed during a crash landing on a golf course. “Harrison was flying a WWII plane today that had engine problems taking off,” Ford’s publicist at the time, Ina Treciokas, said in a statement on CNN. “He had no choice but to make an emergency landing, which he did safely.”
Treciokas continued: “He was beaten and is in hospital receiving medical attention. The injuries sustained are not life-threatening, and he is expected to make a full recovery.”
The actor’s oldest son, Ben Ford, tweeted about his father’s condition after the incident. “Dad is fine. Battered, but okay!”, he wrote. “He is the man you think he is. He is an incredibly strong man.”
Considering that Ford’s plane cut the top of a tree, it is quite remarkable that it has moved away from the crash relatively unscathed.
Harrison Ford has come under fire for his mistakes
Harrison Ford has been transparent about his 2017 aviation error, saying GQ he found the situation “completely embarrassing.” He also questioned how the event was portrayed in the media, noting that the other plane “did not fly over”, and that “it did not nearly fail.” Ford added: “Officially, I admitted to two of the common mental processes that can lead a pilot to make a mistake: distraction and fixation.”
The actor said he made a “good landing” despite being “in the wrong place.”
As for the reaction he received, Ford admitted that he was not fully prepared for it. “I thought I would suffer the consequences,” he said. “I knew he was screwed. I knew what process it would have to go through. I even knew it would be in the newspapers. I didn’t know it would be for weeks.”
We are not sure if Ford will continue to fly after the 2020 incident, although he is obviously passionate about aviation. “Flying is like good music: it elevates the spirit and it is an exciting freedom,” he told the Daily Mail in 2010. “It is not an exciting thing or an adrenaline rush; it is participating in a process that requires focus and commitment. I love machines, I love the aviation community.