Credit Wikimedia Commons Credit Wikimedia Commons

 

A small, private U.S. plane with an unresponsive pilot was headed toward Jamaica on Friday, after veering far from its destination in Florida, U.S. authorities said.

 

The single-engine, seven-seater plane, which left from New York state and was bound for Naples, Florida, was flying at an altitude of 25,000 feet (7,620 meters) southbound over the Atlantic Ocean, according to a spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration.

 

 

The errant plane triggered a U.S. security alert. It was trailed by two F-15 fighter jets, according to the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), until it entered Cuban airspace.

"The pilot has not been responding to radio calls since 10 am EDT," the FAA said.

CNN reported that the F-15 pilots who were tracking the aircraft could see the pilot slumped over before the plane's windows frosted over.

The turboprop Socata TBM700 business plane flew along the east coast of Florida before entering Cuban airspace, the FAA said. It was not able to confirm the number of persons on board.

A Cuban aviation official told Reuters that Cuba was in touch with U.S. authorities about the plane and that Cuban airspace has not been violated.

"There has been no violation of the airspace, and we are working in coordination with authorities in the United States," said an official with Cuba's Civil Aviation Institute.

"The FAA routinely coordinates with Cuban air traffic controllers on flights that overfly both countries," the FAA said.

The flight departed from Greater Rochester International Airport in New York on Friday morning and was headed to Naples Municipal Airport, the FAA added.

The U.S. Coast Guard also reported that a C-130 aircraft from Clearwater, on the Florida west coast, was "enroute to unresponsive aircraft."