|All safe following plane accident for basketball team|
|Written by Matt Pargoff|
Heading to Washington D.C. out of Willow Run Airport for a noon matchup Thursday with Illinois in the Big Ten Tournament, the Michigan basketball team’s charter suffered an accident during an aborted takeoff. Fortunately, no serious injuries were reported.
Statement from the official Michigan Basketball Twitter account: “After attempting to take off in high winds, takeoff was aborted and, after strong braking, the plane [slid] off runway. The plane sustained extensive damage but everyone on board was safely evacuated and is safe.”
Southeast Michigan was inundated by high winds on Wednesday, with The Weather Channel reporting gusts as high as 65 miles per hour. Despite the initial scare, the plan is to go on with the game as scheduled.
“President [Mark] Schlissel and I are glad to know that the students, coaches and staff are all safe and that nobody was seriously injured, said athletic director Warde Manuel in a released statement. “The safety and health of our students and staff is of the utmost importance.
“We have worked quickly to arrange alternative travel arrangements for the Michigan travel party. We have been in constant contact with the Big Ten Conference and appreciate their support and willingness to work with us as we sorted through all of the issues. As of right now, we will be able to arrive tomorrow morning in D.C. and play the game at noon as scheduled.”
The revised plan is for the team to depart from Detroit Metro at 7:30 a.m. Thursday morning and land in D.C. at 8:45 a.m. The noon meeting between the Wolverines and Fighting Illini can be viewed on Big Ten Network.