A man is now in a “medical facility” in Las Vegas after he hopped the fence at Las Vegas’s McCarran Airport on Saturday and managed to climb onto the wing of a Boeing 737 loaded and ready for departure. Cellphones were rolling as the man, with a sweater wrapped around his waist, strolled the length of the wing of the aircraft getting ready to depart as Alaska Airlines Flight 1367 to Portland. Fortunately, the crew saw the man walking toward the aircraft and hit the brakes.

It’s not clear how he got up on the wing, but after he did, he made the most of it. At one point he sat down and took his shoes off before trying to scale the upward winglet. He lost his grip and slid off to the waiting arms of police on the ramp. He was in the medical facility a short time later. The aircraft returned to the gate and underwent a complete inspection before it took off for Portland four hours late.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.


  1. God. Anybody remember the movie, “Twilight Zone?” I saw one of the the original TV shows that was the inspiration for the movie. A much younger, pre-Star Trek William Shatner looks out the window of an airliner to see a gremlin taking the covers off the engine in-flight. Maybe this was the gremlin’s son ….

    • Yes, one of the more famous episodes of the series!
      Shatner did a great job trying to convince everyone that he wasn’t crazy.
      Of course, he was, but….how to explain the torn up engine at the end?

  2. Maybe he was just inspired by the Tom Cruise Mission Impossible movie, where Cruise clings to the side of an Airbus A400 as it takes off.

    • If you listen to the ATC recordings they had the engines shutdown before he got to the plane. Apparently he had been out on the taxiway and runway for a bit before confronting the 737.