Don’t worry, plane on fire at JFK just a drill, officials confirm

Posted at 11:40 AM, May 21, 2015
and last updated 2015-05-21 12:02:07-04


NEW YORK (PIX11) – Airline passengers landed at John F. Kennedy Intl. Thursday morning to an unsettling sight — a plane fully-engulfed in flames smoking on the tarmac.

It wasn’t a scene out of “Mad Max: Fury Road,” however, just an emergency fire-fighting drill, Port Authority officials confirmed.

Rebecca Pitzer, who spotted the burning plane as her Delta flight touched down around 10 a.m., said there was no announcement made.

“After the initial ‘Holy crap a plane on fire,’ I wondered if I should say anything,” Pitzer said.  “They (Delta) must not have wanted to draw attention to it but I feel like raging flames sort of does that regardless.”

Not wanting to cause a panic, Pitzer didn’t say anything and neither did anyone else.  In fact, no one else reacted — either they were subway-hardened commuters too focused on deplaning, or they simply didn’t see it.  “No one else around me said anything or even looked in that direction, it was weird,” Pitzer said.

Port Authority said in a statement about the blaze:

“JFK is currently conducting a live fire training.  It produces fire and smoke in a controlled fashion away from public areas.”

According to officials, the drill will continue until 1 p.m. and, although a large amount of emergency vehicles should be expected, there aren’t anymore fires planned, officials say.