A Horizon Air Dash 8 Q400 (N449QX) was allegedly stolen by an airline employee, variously described as a 'mechanic' or a 'ramp agent' from a overnight parking stand at Tacoma International Airport, Seattle, Washington on August 10, 2018 and subsequently took off without clearance. It would appear that the aircraft continued to the southwest and carried out at least a partial inside loop over Chambers Bay, levelling out just above the water. Shortly afterwards it crashed on Ketron Island, about 15km southwest of Tacoma but it is unclear if this was deliberate or resulted from a loss of control. The person flying the aircraft died in the crash. The accident happened at dusk (about 2030L) but in VMC - CAVOK. The person, who is said to have taken the aircraft,
was described as a 29 year old local man.
In a purported recording of the RT conversation between the person flying the aircraft and ATC, the man sounds relaxed and, sometimes, perhaps euphoric. He says he's 'got a lot of people who care about him and they're going to be upset when they hear he did this... I'd like to apologise to each and everyone of them'. He then goes on to say 'I'm just a broken guy... got a few screws loose. Never really knew it until now.' He says he wants to have a look at the Olympic Mountains and later says how really beautiful they look. ATC tries to talk him in to returning to the airport and at one point he is heard to say 'can you loop one of these... I'll do a barrel roll and if I do that I'll go on and land it.'