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FAA investigating Rockies after 'unauthorized person' enters cockpit on flight

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The Colorado Rockies are being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration and United Airlines after video surfaced of an unauthorized person sitting in the cockpit during a recent team charter, according to Alison Sider of the Wall Street Journal.

During the Rockies' flight from Denver to Toronto on April 10, a person not part of the crew was recorded pretending to control the plane and giving a thumbs-up while sitting in the captain's chair as the plane was clearly in the air, sources told Sider. The video was posted to both social media and YouTube earlier in the week but has since been deleted.

Rockies manager Bud Black said hitting coach Hensley Meulens apologized to the organization for sitting in the pilot's seat, according to Lauren Penington and Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post.

"We're deeply disturbed by what we see in that video, which appears to show an unauthorized person in the flight deck at cruise altitude while the autopilot was engaged," United Airlines said in a statement. "As a clear violation of our safety and operational policies, we've reported the incident to the FAA and have withheld the pilots from service while we conduct an investigation."

The FAA confirmed it is investigating the incident but did not provide further details.

"Federal regulations restrict flight deck access to specific individuals," the FAA told CNN's Pete Muntean.

The airplane incident is the latest twist to what's been a disastrous start to 2024 for the Rockies. Colorado owns a National League-worst 4-15 record and minus-41 run differential and enters play Friday with five straight losses.

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