JetBlue plane piece recovered from California cyclist

Alleged JetBlue part
Alleged JetBlue part

FOUNTAIN VALLEY, CA (KCAL/KCBS/CNN) – A close call for a California woman.

Cindy Gilbert says a three-foot panel of metal nearly hit her on Thursday.

She says it fell from the sky, landing about three feet away into the sand at Huntington State Beach.

She was out for a bike ride at the time.

She took it home, and on Friday, an FAA inspector came over and took it away.

The inspector would not confirm to the media that the panel belongs to JetBlue Flight 1416 which made an emergency landing on Thursday because of an engine problem. Four people were hurt in the incident.

Gilbert says he confirmed it to her.

She also described her close encounter.

She says she first saw the panel in her peripheral vision.

“I went back. [I] saw this right there. I’m like, that’s it. That fell out of the sky. Literally, fell out of the sky,” Gilbert said.

JetBlue said Friday that it had no comment as the investigation remained active.

Statement on Flight 1416 Long Beach – Austin (from JetBlue blog):

Flight 1416 LGB – AUS (Airbus 320)

142 Customers, 5 Crewmembers

On September 18, the flight crew aboard flight 1416 reported an issue with the number two engine and returned to Long Beach Airport. The airplane landed safely, and all customers and crew have evacuated via slides with no reported injuries at this time. While the runway at Long Beach is closed, inbound flights are being directed to nearby airports. Customers are encouraged to check the status of their flights at


The aircraft has moved from the impacted runway, and flights will be resuming from runway 12/30. An area crewmember has accompanied one customer who requested transport to an area hospital for observation. We’re working with customers for re-accommodation on alternate flights.

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