On Thursday, Dale Earnhardt Jr and his family were involved in a plane crash. The incident happened upon landing in Tennessee.
The plane bounced and the landing gear snapped. The plane then skated down the runway. It will through a fence, into and back out of a ditch and came to a stop on the highway adjacent to the runway.
With 1,000 gallons of fuel on-board the plane ignited. All passengers remained inside the plane for several minutes as smoke billowed from the plane.
People began to run up to the plane but were unable to get close enough to help them open the cockpit door. Eventually, they busted it open from the inside and all people escaped without serious injury.
Passengers included: Dale Earnhardt Jr, Amy Earnhardt, their daughter, two pilots and the family dog.
Dale Earnhardt Jr was scheduled to be in the broadcast booth during the race weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway. However, he decided to take the weekend off and spend time close to family.
Dale Jr does a weekly podcast which is released at the first part of the week. The new podcast was released moments ago but it was pre-recorded before the incident.
Dale Earnhardt Jr sat down with his family and daughter in hand. He recorded an additional segment that proceeded the normal show:
âSince then, my family and I were involved in an awful accident. Just wanted to let everybody know that weâre so thankful for all the prayers, phone calls and everything everybody did. Itâs really helped lift us up.â
âWeâre so appreciative by the quick decisions by our pilots. The emergency personnel, law enforcement, everyone at the hospital was amazing.â
âIt was so fast, how quickly they responded and took care of us. We were in incredible hands.â
âThereâs an investigation going on. So, weâre not going to comment or about what happened. Or discuss that with anybody, going forward.â
âWeâre just trying to process what we went through. We appreciate all the privacy weâve been extended to do that on our own time. Itâs been a very difficult few days.â
âBut, me and my wife and our family are just trying our best to get back to normal as soon as possible. We just really appreciate all the support. Itâs meant a lot to us and we want you to know that.â
On Saturday night, the green flag dropped on the Bristol night race. In the grandstands, sat the very people to worked the scene of the crash.
NASCAR worked up free tickets to the race. They saw a thrilling short track battle between Denny Hamlin and Matt DiBenedetto. The Sheriffâs office has since commented:
âWe had a great time with our first responder family at the BMS night race!â The Carter County Sheriffâs Office said.
âA big thank you to NASCAR for giving us and all the agencies that responded to Dale Jr.âs plane crash free tickets!â