No Fine for Harrison Ford After Run-in at John Wayne Airport.
Harrison Ford, 74, faced a probe after he mistakenly flew his single-engine private plane over an American Airlines passenger jet and landed on a taxiway, rather than a runway, on 13 February at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana.
The Federal Aviation Administration concluded that “no administrative or enforcement action was warranted,” Ford’s lawyer, Stephen Hofer, said in a statement.
He added: “Mr Ford retains his pilot’s certificate without restriction.”
The actor, who played smuggler and Millennium Falcon pilot Han Solo in the “Star Wars” film franchise, was also praised by the agency for his “long history of compliance” with FAA regulations and “his cooperative attitude during the investigation,” Hofer said.
Although Ford incurred no penalty, he agreed to undergo voluntary “airman counselling” before the FAA closed the matter.
His lawyer said. “It was Ford’s second known misadventure in the more than two decades since becoming a licensed pilot.”
In 2015, he crashed a vintage plane onto a golf course near a Santa Monica airport, suffering serious injuries and badly damaging the aircraft.
He told investigators then he did not recall the moments before the plane went down.
In addition to interviewing Ford following the Santa Ana incident, investigators examined tapes of pilot and air traffic control radio traffic, radar data and a 3D flight analysis.
The actor was alone and at the controls of his Aviat Husky on a landing approach when he flew over a Boeing 737 preparing for takeoff with 116 passengers and crew on board, then landed his plane on a taxiway parallel to the runway assigned him.
Ford was clearly embarrassed by the gaffe, according to radio traffic, telling the tower: “I’m the schmuck that landed on the taxiway.”
Audio also revealed Ford had apparently been distracted by an Airbus passenger jet landing just ahead of him.
The FAA declined comment on the case other than saying it had completed an investigation of a 13 Feb incident in which a pilot landed on a John Wayne Airport taxiway.
Harrison Ford has logged more than 5,000 hours of flight time without being subject to FAA discipline, Hofer said.