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Boy survives five-hour flight while hiding in wheel well of Hawaiian Airlines plane

Stowaway flew from San Jose to Maui.
By Evan Bleier   |   April 21, 2014 at 7:33 AM   |   Comments

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MAUI, Hawaii, April 21 (UPI) -- According to FBI officials, a 16-year-old boy was able to survive temperatures that may have gotten as low as 80 degrees below zero while hiding in the wheel well of a Hawaiian Airlines plane during a flight from California to Hawaii.

The teenager was discovered by airline staff when the plane touched down in Maui after having taken off from San Jose more than five hours before.

The boy was in stable condition despite enduring freezing temperatures and a lack of oxygen during the trip. The plane reached an altitude of 38,000 feet during the flight.

“How he survived I don’t know,” Tom Simon, an FBI spokesman, told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s a miracle. He was unconscious for pretty much the entire flight. I imagine he must have blacked out at about 10,000 feet. The air is pretty thin up there.”

The teen was attempting to run away from home and he has not been charged with a crime.

“Our primary concern now is the well being of the boy, who is exceptionally lucky to have survived,” Hawaiian Airlines said in a statement.

The only possession the boy brought with him was a comb.


[BBC]
[Los Angeles Times]

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