Plane Too Close to Obama, Forced To Land

By: From CNN, Posted by Ralph Hipp
By: From CNN, Posted by Ralph Hipp
The FAA says the small plane was ordered to land after violating presidential airspace restrictions.

An error by controllers at an air traffic center put planes too close to each other over central Illinois. It was the second error by controllers at the FAA's Chicago Center radar facility in Aurora reported in a week, Friday, Dec. 21, 2007. (CBS/iStockphoto)

CHINO, California (CNN) -- A small plane was forced to land in Chino, California after a pilot violated airspace restrictions in place for President Obama's visit, FAA spokesperson Allen Kenitzer told CNN. Kenitzer had no further details about the incident.

The military also intercept a private plane Thursday morning in the vicinity of Fullerton, California, Kenitzer said. The aircraft, a Mooney M20, landed at Chino at approximately 6:04 a.m. PDT. The FAA is investigating.

The incidents on Thursday followed a similar issue on Wednesday when a fighter jet intercepted a single-engine airplane northwest of Los Angeles for breaching a temporary airspace restriction, according to a military news release.

The temporary restriction violated by the Cessna aircraft coincided with a campaign visit to the city by Obama, who was on a one-day fundraising swing through the state.

"After intercepting the aircraft, the F-16 followed it until it landed without incident, at approximately 4:58 p.m. PDT where the plane was met by local law enforcement," according to a statement issued by the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).

The president spoke at a gala for the gay community in Los Angeles, on his third fundraising trip to the Golden State in the past month. Earlier in the day, he attended two campaign events in San Francisco.

NORAD's mission is to protect U.S. and Canadian airspace against possible threats and may require planes to change course or land.

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