UPDATE 8-19-2019: Dale Earnhardt Jr. issued the following statement on Monday afternoon:
— Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) August 19, 2019
UPDATE: The plane carrying Dale Earnhardt Jr., his wife and daughter had a firm landing and bounced twice before it continued off the runway, went down a ditch, through a chain-link fence and came to rest on a nearby road, according to a senior investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board.
Ralph Hicks stated in a media briefing Friday in front of the burned fuselage that video surveillance from nearby buildings caught the plane’s landing in what he described as “good weather, calm winds” at Elizabethton Municipal Airport.
Hicks said the video shows the plane “balloon up and come back down” on landing. He said he couldn’t tell how high the plane bounced via the video but will use data from the plane to determine that.
Both pilots have been interviewed and Hicks stated that what they said was “very consistent” with what the video showed. Hicks also said investigators had talked to the Earnhardt family.
— NBC Sports —
UPDATE: Speaking ahead of second practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at Bristol Motor Speedway, Steve Letarte told NBCSN viewers about his meeting with his friends on Thursday: “I feel very fortunate that I got to spend a little bit of time with Dale, Amy and Isla, and much like the reports said it was a scary situation, and they’re doing relatively OK, healthy, no major medical issues. Now they’re together, resting, recovering and processing the situation.”
— Motorsport —
Additional details from the NTSB on the plane crash that involved Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his family. pic.twitter.com/0eIgmymdSz
— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) August 16, 2019
UPDATE: Below is an updated statement from Kelley Earnhardt Miller, general manager of JR Motorsports, regarding Thursday’s plane crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr., his wife Amy, daughter Isla and two JRM pilots.
“We want to reiterate our appreciation to the NASCAR community, first responders, medical staff, and race fans everywhere for the overwhelming support in the last 24 hours. Dale, Amy, Isla and our two pilots are doing well. We are assisting the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board in the investigation and will have no further comment at this time.”
— JR Motorsports —
UPDATE: The FAA preliminary accident report notes “AIRCRAFT EXPERIENCED HARD LANDING, BOUNCED, DEPARTED RUNWAY AND CAUGHT FIRE”
UPDATE 8-16-2019: An eyewitness to the fiery plane crash involving retired NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., his wife Amy, their child Isla and the family pet, says she and coworkers “heard a loud thud” and then saw the flames coming from the plane as it came to rest on the edge of Highway 91.
“We heard a loud thud and we all ran to the windows and the plane was sliding down the road, it was already in flames, smoke billowing and it slid to a stop right there,” said Sissy Moody, an employee at the Alliance Business and Training Career Center across the street from the Elizabethton Municipal Airport, as she pointed to the wreckage. “As soon as it stopped the dog comes out and then I guess it was Dale with the baby and his wife and then the two pilots right behind them. But Dale went on the ground maybe 30- to 40-foot from the plane when he came off. But everything, this tunnel was in a blaze, the plane was in a blaze.
“It was already on fire but when it stopped it went into a huge blaze. I was already running across the grounds. I said there are people in there. I was amazed they came out.”
— Kickin the Tires —
NEWS FROM THURSDAY, AUGUST 16
UPDATES: NBC says Dale Earnhardt Jr will take this weekend off to be with his family. He will return to the booth at Darlington (Cup is off next weekend).
NBC Sports statement on Dale Earnhardt Jr.: pic.twitter.com/O364HDMn3d
— NBC Sports PR (@NBCSportsPR) August 16, 2019
News 5’s John Engel says Dale Earnhardt Jr. has left the Johnson City Medical Center. John saw Dale Jr. leave the hospital by police escort.
They later posted video they say is Dale Earnhardt Jr. arriving at Bristol Motor Speedway.
— WCYB —
The Carter County Sheriff’s Office has confirmed that Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s plane crashed at the Elizabethton Municipal Airport. Earnhardt Jr. has been transported to the hospital. The department also says Earnhardt Jr.’s wife Amy Reimann was also on board. The Elizabethton Fire Chief Barry Carrier says everyone survived the crash.
— News Channel 9 —
I can confirm Dale, Amy & Isla along with his two pilots were involved in a crash in Bristol TN this afternoon. Everyone is safe and has been taken to the hospital for further evaluation. We have no further information at this time. Thank you for your understanding.
— Kelley Earnhardt (@EarnhardtKelley) August 15, 2019
— Tennessean (@Tennessean) August 15, 2019
WTVC reports that the sheriff says there were cuts & abrasions, but no serious injuries.
Retired NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. was taken to the Johnson City Medical Center for minor injuries according to Carter County Sheriff Dexter Lunceford.
Earnhardt’s injuries were described as just cuts and abrasions.
— WJHL —
MORE: According to the Carter County Sheriff's Office, 5 people were on the plane: Earnhardt, his wife & child, the pilot, and another person, along with the family dog. The sheriff says there were cuts & abrasions, but no serious injuries.
— WTVC NewsChannel 9 (@newschannelnine) August 15, 2019
BREAKING: The plane that went off the runway in Elizabethton has an N number of N8JR which is registered to JRM- Junior Motorsports. Pics from Dale Campbell. pic.twitter.com/25B90gnz7y
— Ricky Matthews (@WCYB_Ricky) August 15, 2019