Reno Nevada Air Show Crash Just One Of Many (VIDEOS)

crash reno air showAir shows are a really big deal. Apparently more than 12 million people go to them every year. I see the allure. Old planes from a different era ... the kind I played with when I was a kid or built as model airplanes ... doing tricks in the air that seem unimaginable. But man it must be tricky as hell for a pilot to command a small plane twisting and turning, or in the case of Jimmy Leeward and his "Galloping Ghost," to race at more than 500 miles an hour as spectators watch from below, in Nevada.

Yesterday Leeward, a veteran pilot, lost control of his cool vintage plane and did a nose dive into the crowd that came out to watch The Reno Air Races. A nose dive. Onlookers who witnessed the crash said it looked like he tried to pull up, but it was immediately clear he would end up in the crowd. The video is shocking to watch, but for some reason (which I hate to admit), I couldn't resist watching it. I think part of me was hoping it would look less tragic?

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After seeing it though, I am shocked (and happy to hear) that only three people died (as of my writing this), the pilot, and a man and woman on the ground; however, at least 57 others were taken to the hospital, many in critical condition. My heart goes out to not only the victims, but I can't help but think about ALL of the children that must have been there ... so excited to see the air show in person.

Below is the full report on the tragedy that occurred yesterday, complete with witness accounts and the actual crash.

This air show accident got me thinking, how many other similar scenes could I find online? Is this something that happens often? Wikipedia lists eight separate air show incidents, so far this year, and five that occurred in 2010.

And just last month we reported on three air show tragedies — all over one weekend in August. Below is an ABC News report from that weekend, with video of the different crashes. Be forewarned that it may be difficult to watch.

Barbara Pinto, the reporter in the clip above, says that it has been more than 60 years since a spectator fatality occurred at an American air show. Yesterday, near Reno, Nevada, that all changed.

 

Are you one of the 12 million people each year to head out for an air show?


Image via YouTube

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