Delta flight mistakenly lands at air force base in South Dakota
A Delta flight mistakenly landed at an air force base in South Dakota — instead of the intended airport about 10 miles way
Delta Flight 2845 left Minneapolis for South Dakota on Thursday evening with 130 people aboard.
The Airbus A320 was scheduled to touch down at Rapid City Regional Airport, but landed instead at Ellsworth Air Force Base, Delta said in a statement.
The airport and the air force base are just a few miles apart, and their runways point in nearly the same direction.
A few hours later, after coordinating with officials, the flight took off for Rapid City the same night.
Federal officials are investigating the incident.
“The crew has been taken off-duty while an investigation commences by the National Transportation Safety Board,” the airline said.
“Delta will fully cooperate with that investigation and has already begun an internal review of its own.”
The airline said it has “offered a gesture of apology for the inconvenience” to customers affected, but did not provide specifics.
While rare, Delta is not the first airline to end up at the wrong airport.
Two years ago, a Southwest Airlines jet mistakenly landed several miles away at a Missouri municipal airport that did not have a control tower in Taney County.
The Taney County airport’s runway was half the length of the one at Branson Airport, where it was originally intended to land. The pilots had to brake hard when the aircraft with 129 people aboard touched down.
No one was injured.
The National Transportation Safety Board investigated that incident as well.