Saturday, January 26, 2008

Five dead after car crashes off end of private airstrip

(CNN) -- Five young men died Saturday when the car they were in drove off the end of a private airstrip near Ocala, Florida, became airborne for 200 feet and slammed into an oak tree, authorities said.

"This had to be the worst vehicle crash that I have ever seen during my career," said Randy Robinson, a spokesman for the Emergency Medical Services Alliance with 27 years on the job.

The 2008 BMW was split in two in the wreck, which happened at 3:45 a.m., said Lt. Mike Burroughs, a spokesman for the Florida Highway Patrol Troop B.

He told CNN the victims -- 18 to 20 years old and all from the area -- were declared dead at the scene.

Burroughs said it was not clear how the car got onto the private Greystone community airstrip -- the same one actor John Travolta uses for his aircraft -- but the car was driving north on Runway 36, which is 1.5 miles long.

"It is evident that the driver of the vehicle saw he was approaching the end of the runway," Burroughs said. "He attempted a braking maneuver and the vehicle slid sideways off the end of the runway."

The car flew through the air for 200 feet, he said, and struck an oak tree 15 feet off the ground, splitting the vehicle in two.

(full article)
Looks like these geniuses either thought their BMW could fly or tried to break the BMW land speed record not thinking about the minor matter of stopping distance. It safe to say they won't make that mistake again; nor will their progeny.

Note that this airpark has one runway (18/36 running roughly north/south). End-to-end, the pavement is a little over 7500' in length; though the threshold to threshold is 3800'.

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