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Bama Fans Crash Plane, Escape, Give Thanks… Then Head To Saturday’s Game

“We can still make the game, it’s at 8:30.  We’re not bleedin’.”


Those were the words of one of four men traveling to see Saturday night’s game between Alabama and Ole Miss in Tuscaloosa.  They came after an engine died on the private plane they were flying.  They came after they crashed said plane into a cotton field.  They came after they escaped from the downed plane as fuel began to leak.

And no, we’re not making that up.

WPMI-TV in Mobile/Pensacola has a big chunk of the story here.

After crash landing their plane in Selma, Alabama — and slicing through some trees in the process — the men say they gathered in a circle and “said a prayer to Jesus.”  According to WSFA-TV in Montgomery, the pilot claims the buddies then caught a ride to Montgomery where they rented a car and drove to the Tide’s game.

There are only two things that really surprise us about this story.  First, the men didn’t say a prayer to Bear Bryant.  Second, one of the four men on the plane was actually an Auburn grad just tagging along to the game with his pals.  Well, no wonder the plane crashed.  Alabama and Auburn fans getting along in closed quarters?  That in itself will earn somebody a ticket to the Twilight Zone.  The plane probably had a fuzzy bear-like creature on the wing.

Topping things off, since the men left for the game, authorities arrived on the scene and found no one who could answer any questions about the plane sitting smack in the middle of the cotton field.  Apparently that whole, “Don’t leave the scene of an accident” thing doesn’t apply to airplanes.  Or Bama fans.  Or both.

If you wondered how anything could ever top Harvey Updyke “allegedly” poisoning the oak trees at Auburn’s Toomer’s Corner, you didn’t have to wait long for the story of Brian Downing.  And if you wondered how anything could ever top Downing placing his genitals on the face of a passed out LSU fan after the BCS title game — Downing pled guilty to obscenity charges on Tuesday, by the way — you didn’t have to wait long for this story of Alabama fans who wouldn’t let a little ol’ plane crash come between them and their beloved Crimson Tide.

Can anybody else hear Gene Rayburn from “Match Game” in their head right now?

Rayburn: “Alabama fans are so crazy…”

Live studio audience: “How crazy are they?”

Crazy enough to keep topping one “they’ll never top that” kind of story after another.



FAA regulations, part 830.5, cover this situation. 1) the "operator of the aircraft" is required to "immediately" report the accident to the NTSB and 2) file a written report within 10 days to the same. 3) Reporting damage to property would be a matter of local and state laws and or ordinances and the fact that fuel was leaking (most likely 100LL aviation fuel) would most likely trigger EPA reporting requirements and a lack of due dilegence in reporting those will probably trigger local, state and federal questions, especially if there is a well or other natural water source that feeds the farmers fields. (and it is almost impossible to smack a light airplane in a field with gear up and not have a minor fuel leak). Then ofcourse there are probably municiple regulations about notifying property owners of damage, trespassing (leaving the airplane unattended without notifying owner, etc), ad infinitum.


Still a funny story, but the pilot just got himself a massive paperwork headache.


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