SSSI responds to airplane accident

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 17, 2001

Staff Writer

Tony Scott’s fear proved to be correct Sunday morning.

Scott, the public relations manager for Sikorsky Support Services Inc., saw the black smoke as he returned home from church. Minutes later, he was being called about an incident at the Troy airport.

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Scott said his fears were realized when the SSSI security guard called him at home.

"I loaded up in the car and came out here," he said while sitting at his desk Tuesday afternoon.

It was when he turned onto the roadway leading to Sikorsky that what had happened became a reality, as he looked at the wrecked airplane, which was burning.

"I took one of the crash trucks over there," Scott said of the SSSI fire trucks equipped to handle crash and other incidents involving aircraft, such as cockpits full of smoke and frozen carburators.

"Our truck’s main purpose is crash rescue."

The former firefighter himself was ready for the task at hand. He awaited removal of both plane occupants before he could really spray the aircraft down with firefighting foam.

"There was worry the wing would catch fire," Scott said. "After the last pilot was removed, I laid a bed of foam over it."

He said a Troy fireman took another hose and went to the wreckage and foamed the hot spots.

"We work closely with the city of Troy’s fire and police and Haynes Ambulance," Scott said.

As a matter of fact, Sikorsky and the city of Troy, along with Ft. Rucker’s fire department, worked an accident on Highway 67 about a year ago.

But, this time was different because the situation was in Scott’s turf, so to speak.

"Everything worked out well," Scott said of handling the burning aircraft.

Ironically, it was last week when Scott and the new air tower personnel talked about "how lucky we’ve been" and setting up a disaster drill for training purposes.

"On Sunday, we didn’t need a drill," Scott said, adding praise to the airport’s credit.

"They run a very smooth operation here at the airport," Scott said.

Of Sunday’s efforts, Scott said, "It worked out as if we’d been practicing over and over again."