Brandon Mulder – Austin Community Newspapers Staff
Emergency officials called off a search for a small airplane crash Sunday after determining the report was a false alarm.
Fire crews responded to an area just west of Loop 360 off Bee Cave Road near the County Line on the Hill restaurant.
“They said they had gotten a report there was a plane crash, so they just wanted to check it out and see if they could see off our balcony,” said Alicia Fuertsch, a manager on duty at the restaurant Sunday afternoon. “They went out there and they didn’t see anything, and I went out there as well and I didn’t see anything either.”
A short time later, the Austin Fire Department called off the search and tweeted that a biplane was buzzing the restaurant, generating a mistaken alarm.
It’s not the first time aerobatic biplanes have triggered mistaken 911 calls, said Mike Elliott, fire chief of the Travis County Emergency Service District No. 9.
“We got what was reported to be an aircraft down about two months ago in the same area, and it ended up being one of these biplanes that was flying low and doing some maneuvers around Lake Austin,” Elliott said. “So we went out and all kinds of agencies responded, and we never found anything. That’s what we think it was.”