Inhofe Reports Runway Departure


Senate file photo

A Harmon Rocket flown by Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., ran off the runway after landing in Ketchum, Oklahoma, about 7 p.m. Sunday night, ABC News reported this morning. ABC said a spokesperson for the senator confirmed that Inhofe was flying the airplane, and that he had told the FAA he veered into the brush to avoid a deer on the runway. The 81-year-old senator and another local pilot had been out flying, each in their own airplane, when severe weather prompted the unscheduled landing, according to ABC. Senator Inhofe was alone in the airplane and nobody was hurt. The FAA is investigating the incident. The aerobatic Harmon Rocket taildragger is a modified Van’s sport plane.

Senator Inhofe has logged more than 11,000 hours, according to his website, and is well-known in the aviation community as an advocate for aviation legislation, including third-class-medical reform. The FAA required him to take “remedial training” after an incident in 2010 when he landed on a closed runway in his Cessna 340, narrowly missing several parked vehicles. Nobody was hurt.