Body Falls From Amerijet Aircraft Bound For Miami <


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Body Falls From Amerijet Aircraft Bound For Miami

Daniel Baxter

February 20, 2010 - A 27 year old man who tried to reach Miami died after falling to his death from a departing jet bound for Miami. The 27 year old stowaway hid himself from ramp personnel in the wheel well of an Amerijet aircraft that had been parked at AILA’s Cabo Caucedo cargo terminal at Las Americas Airport (AILA), Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The accident occurred at 2:47 PM on Thursday. An air traffic controller saw something fall from the Amerijet plane just as it took off. Air traffic was diverted to Punta Cana as the airport was shut down for 45 minutes while investigators tried to determine what happened. 

The body was taken from the runway to the airport morgue. First responders reported the young man died instantly from multiple fractures to the skull, limbs and body. The Amerijet flight arrived in Florida about two hours later and was taken to a remote area at Miami International Airport for inspection. No information has been offered by authorities from the US, Dominican Republic or Amerijet as to how the victim managed to gain access to a restricted area or how the pilots missed seeing the stowaway in their preflight inspection of the aircraft.


The aircraft, which is owned by Amerijet International, was on its third leg from Port of Spain, Venezuela, and was heading to Miami, Florida. The aircraft was piloted by Felix Joseph Grosso. A similar incident occurred in February 1999, at Las Americas airport when a stowaway attempted to hide in the underbelly of the aircraft, he too fell to his death. 

Amerijet International is an American cargo airline headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States. It operates all-jet cargo services to destinations in Central America, South America and the Caribbean. Its main base is Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, with a hub at Miami International Airport. 

The airline was established and started operations in 1974. It was founded by David Bassett (Chairman and Chief Executive) and a partner with one leased aircraft, operating passenger and cargo services between the USA and the Bahamas.  

In 1976, Amerijet became a freight only carrier. In late 1978, courier contracts were taken from Purolator, FedEx, UPS, DHL and from Airborne Express in the early 1980s. In 1982, Bassett bought out his partner and created Amerijet International. It operated under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection from August 22, 2001, until December 31, 2001, from which it emerged after financial restructuring. Amerijet International is owned by HIG Capital (66%) and David Bassett (34%) and has 577 employees. 

Back in August 2009, pilots of the air cargo Amerijet International had gone on strike as a result of having to work long hours and lack of restroom facilities on their aircraft. The pilots had reported AmeriJet originally removed the plane's lavatories to reduce the plane's weight and the cost of servicing the restrooms.

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