A harrowing story about a plane crashing with 53 dogs aboard has surfaced. It happened on November 15 while the plane was en route to the Humane Animal Welfare Society of Waukesha, Wisconsin, after departing New Orleans, Louisiana. The plane was so badly damaged after crashing onto the snow-covered Western Lakes Golf Course in Delafield, that both wings were ripped off during the terrifying landing.
Bumps & Bruises
Maggie Tate-Techtmann, director of organizational development at the Humane Animal Welfare Society (HAWS), noted that the injured dogs had undergone treatment and have since been placed for adoption. “Our team is very good at jumping into action,” she stated, “so we were ready to jump into action.”
Miracles Can Happen
It isn’t unusual for dogs to be transported great distances by plane to animal shelters. Many flying groups are devoted to this method of transport, like Pilots N Paws, Flying Fur Animal Rescue, Pilots to the Rescue, Dog is My CoPilot, and others. In this case, thanks to the expertise of the pilot, everyone onboard survived with only minor injuries.
While it has since been cleaned up, an estimated 300 gallons of jet fuel spilled onto the ground during the crash and drained into a nearby marsh. At this time, the cause of the mishap remains under investigation. Assistant Fire Chief Matthew Haerter stated, “While this is a very large incident…this could have turned out so much worse. The pilot did exactly what he should have done.”
God is My Copilot
It’s been reported that three people on the flight had sustained non-life-threatening injuries and were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. All 53 dogs were taken to a local humane society, where some of them were also treated for minor injuries.
As they awaited adoption, HAWS posted the dogs, now known as the Western Lakes Loves, on their Facebook page. Of the 53, 21 of them were taken in by HAWS while the rest went to other rescue groups.
Humane Animal Welfare Society of Waukesha
Tate-Techtmann told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “All dogs are doing remarkably well. Everyone pivoted so well. I tell them all the time to be prepared for the unexpected, and the team did a remarkable job meeting the needs of these dogs today. Some are already out having fun in the snow and are on the road to finding their forever homes.”
First Responders to the Rescue
Since the event, at least three dogs have been adopted by Lake Country Fire and Rescue first responders, the same folks called to the scene that day. Two of them are paramedic and firefighter Amber Christian and EMT and firefighter Elle Steitzer, who never thought responding to a call for help that day would lead to welcoming new family members.
Who doesn’t love a happy ending, especially where rescue animals are concerned?