UK

Plane Stowaway Survived In Wheel Well On Flight From California To Hawaii

22/04/2014 10:43 BST | Updated 22/04/2014 16:59 BST

A teenager appears to have survived a five-hour flight stowing away in the plane's wheel well, despite the freezing temperatures he would have endured.

The 16-year-old appeared to emerge from the Hawaiian Airline plane's undercarriage on the runway at Kahului Airport in Hawaii, after it arrived from San Jose, California. The airline issued a statement saying he was "exceptionally lucky", ABC News reported.

He apparently jumped over a security fence at San Jose Airport and crossed the tarmac to reach the plane's wheel well.

stowaway hawaii

The teenager would have endured freezing temperatures at the plane's cruising altitude

He would have endured temperatures of around -80 degrees Fahrenheit as the plane cruised at 38,000 feet.

The boy is understood to have lost consciousness during the journey due to the temperature.The plane landed at the Maui airport on Sunday but the teen did not regain consciousness for an additional hour, the LA Times reported.

Many who have attempted to smuggle themselves on board passenger jets have not been so lucky. In September 2012, an Angolan man fell from a plane's undercarriage as it came in to land in Heathrow.

It was unclear whether he was killed by the fall or had already frozen to death on the journey or been crushed by the landing gear when it first retracted on the flight.

The BBC reported that 96 people are known to have hidden under planes during flights around the world between 1947 and 2012, according to the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute in the US, and 23 survived.