Night UFOs force jet to dive

The Colonist
Friday, Nov. 16, 1979

TENERIFE, Canary Islands (UPI) - Passengers who insist their Caravelle jet was buzzed by unidentified flying objects said Thursday one of their group collapsed when he saw the pulsating red objects zig-zagging across the night sky toward them.

The Caravelle was carrying charter passengers from Saltzburg, Austria, to Tenerife in the Spanish Canary Islands Sunday when it made an emergency landing at Valencia airport on the Spanish mainland after being "pursued" by what its pilot says were UFOs.

The civil aviation department of the Spanish Transport Ministry opened a secret investigation into the bizarre encounter at the request of Transport Minister Salvador Sanchez Tehran, who was in Valencia at the time of the sighting.

Passengers from flight 297, which arrived in Tenerife a day late, said Thursday many - but not all - of them saw the objects pilot Lerdo de Tejada says made two attempts to intercept him, forcing him into a 14,000-foot dive.

The passengers, for the most part Germans and Austrians, said they saw the UFOs in the sky over Valencia airport for two hours after they landed.

The director of the airport corroborated their claim.

Several people living in the Valencia region came forward to confirm the UFO sighting.


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