Another sighting of a guy in a jetpack flying over LAX

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/10/15/another-sighting-of-a-guy-in-a-jetpack-flying-over-lax.html

3 Likes

Iron Man?

1 Like

Until more evidence emerges, I am inclined to believe this is some sort of stunt or prank similar to the “flying lawnmower” R/C airplane from years ago:
giphy

9 Likes

Danger and all that aside, it is a nice feeling that we live in a time where this can conceivably be happening.

3 Likes

At 6000 ft perhaps he was deposited from another aircraft…

or not…

5 Likes

And the excellent VASaviation has the ATC recording:

5 Likes

Interesting that the object was reported to be “bright” and “shiny.” And at 6000’ it’s too high for most jet packs. I’m still wondering if someone has been releasing those people-shapes Mylar balloons in the area.

10 Likes

I LOL’d at, “was it a UAV, or was it a jetpack?” Clearly not an unusual occurrence.

2 Likes

Yup. More of this, I think…

4 Likes

Pilots see weird stuff all the time. It doesn’t mean it’s anything, and in fact all of this may be nothing. Once word gets out about “jet packs” pilots will start seeing them everywhere. Pilots are human beings, subject to all the same flaws in cognition and visual perception as the rest of us.

3 Likes

I was under the impression they 'd already settled that it was a drone attached to some kind of mannequin, but at 6000 feet? Probly not.

1 Like

True enough I suppose, but when I piloted Cessnas I did have close encounters with small balloons a couple of times, so I can absolutely believe that a pilot could have seen a novelty balloon from a distance without properly identifying it as such. In fact, with the variety of these large balloons available it would be a miracle if they didn’t occasionally get released and spotted by pilots.

7 Likes

Yah, this was actually my point as well. Maybe balloons, maybe tricks of light, whatever. The point is that people shouldn’t jump from “pilot says they saw a jetpack” to “OMG jet packs are flying around”. That’s what’s always seems to happen with stories like this. The real (and more interesting story, IMHO) is that distances and speeds are very hard to perceive correctly in the sky, and people are really bad at identifying shit in those conditions.

3 Likes

Welp, if it really was a human, I’m really looking forward to accelerating global warming because everybody “needs” their own individual jetpack instead of flying commercial, as it seems to be case with cars these days.

1 Like

I am going to imagine that this is some mad scientist inventor who’s perfecting his jetpack.

Because it would please me if it were true.

In LA, it’s probably Cliff Secord.

1 Like

My problem with the whole story is that the ATC followed up a generic ‘bright and shiny’ report with a leading question about uavs and jetpacks instead of sticking with the object being unidentified. I’m fairly doubtful based on the actual recording that it was actually any sort of jetpack at all.

1 Like

More like… Moron Man.

1 Like

Are you sure it wasn’t Metropolis?
image
Maybe the Justice League is holding tryouts.

If it is a unauthorized jetpack or balloon or big UAV - why in the world would you test it near an airport - a place crawling with air traffic compared to thousands of square miles of unoccupied airspace?

2 Likes