Barnes Regional Airport: “No question on safety” during WWII B-17 Bomber tour in Westfield this weekend

Hampden County

WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A B-17 aircraft is coming to Westfield, just 9 days after the B-17 crash at Bradley, killing seven people.

Despite the deadly crash at Bradley, Barnes Regional Airport is going ahead with its plan to fly passengers aboard the “Experimental Aircraft Association’s” B-17 Flying Fortress.

The organization is going ahead with its plan to take passengers upon a restored B-17 “Aluminum Overcast” because they say there’s “no question about passenger safety.”

“No, at this point it’s, you know, we’re discussing things, but uh, we see no reason to change anything that we have planned. The aircraft will be here and it will be on display and it will be giving rides.”

Eric Billowitz, Airport Manager, Barnes Regional Airport

This B-17 is not owned by the Collings Foundation which owned the aircraft that crashed at Bradley. The Westfield event kicks off Friday, Oct. 11, and continues through Sunday.

These vintage airplanes are required to maintain a level of safety to be allowed to carry passengers, just like commercial aircraft. 22News was told that the B-17 plane at Barnes Regional Airport is fit to fly.

The “Experimental Aircraft Association is charging $449 dollars for non-members to take a flight aboard the B-17.

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