TULSA, Okla. (AP) — The driver of a stolen utility truck crashed through a fence at a Tulsa airport and into oncoming freeway traffic, where it plowed head-on into a car and killed one person early Wednesday, according to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.
Troopers said the driver later abandoned the vehicle and ran off. Officers were still searching for him Wednesday afternoon.
A trooper chasing the stolen vehicle on Tulsa International Airport property saw it barreling toward a parked private jet, Highway Patrolman Dwight Durant told The Associated Press. Worried there were passengers on the jet, the trooper tried to ram the truck, even though the truck outweighed his cruiser about two to three times, Durant said.
"He had an instant thought, 'The jet's loaded with people ready to take off,' and he thinks, 'I've got to do something,'" Durant said.
The maneuver diverted the truck away from the plane. The truck then crossed over a runway twice during the pursuit, burst through a fence and onto nearby U.S. 75, where it crashed head-on with another vehicle, killing one person.
The name of the person who died hasn't been released.
Airport spokeswoman Alexis Higgins said the truck came near a parked Gulfstream jet that had one person aboard but wasn't preparing to take off.
"The airport didn't even have anyone out there responding, it happened so quickly," Higgins said. "This happened within a minute or a couple minutes."
The truck crisscrossed a runway primarily used for corporate business planes and private jets, Higgins said. Higgins said the chase didn't disrupt regular air traffic, and that the runway was closed for about four hours.