F-15s Scramble to Escort Hawaiian Airlines Flight
American Forces Press Service
SALEM, Ore., Jan. 7, 2010 Two Oregon Air National Guard F-15 fighters, under the direction of North American Aerospace Defense Command, intercepted Hawaiian Airlines Flight 39 yesterday after a passenger caused a disturbance on the plane and the pilot decided to return the aircraft to Portland.
An F-15 from the 142nd Fighter Wing of the Oregon Air National Guard prepares for a flight at Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. Two aircraft from the unit scrambled Jan. 6, 2009 to escort a Hawaiian Airlines flight back to Portland International Airport after a passenger caused a disturbance. Oregon National Guard photo
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
The F-15s, stationed at Portland Air National Guard Base, escorted the aircraft until it landed at Portland International Airport without incident at about 1:15 p.m. PST, where the plane was met by law enforcement and the Transportation Security Administration.
The Oregon National Guard's 142nd Fighter Wing guards the skies from northern California to the Canadian border on 24-hour alert as part of the North American Air Defense system. The F-15 fighter jets become a federal asset once alerted, placing them under presidential authority, officials said.
(From an Oregon National Guard news release.)