- Nov 12, 2013
A deliberate fire was set in a FAA radar facility bringing down the radar and communications in the area.
Brian Howard of Naperville charged with starting fire at FAA facility in Aurora, FBI says | abc7chicago.comHoward had intimate knowledge of the building and radar system. According to ABC7 sources, he cut every radar feed to FAA air controllers before setting gas-soaked rags on fire near sensitive equipment and also damaged the communications system.
Radars went dark and the building filled with smoke. FAA employees were evacuated. No one was seriously injured, although a 50-year-old man suffered smoke inhalation.
Officials said water used to put the fire out damaged the sensitive equipment further, and there could be days of potential radar outages at the Aurora facility, which could result in significant flight delays in the Great Lakes region. Without the Aurora facility, planes are moving in and out of Chicago at a "reduced rate" after airspace management was transferred to adjacent FAA facilities.