Meulens apologizes to Rockies after cockpit incident

Since-deleted social media video led to FAA safety investigation of United Airlines

April 20th, 2024

DENVER -- Rockies manager Bud Black said Friday that hitting coach Hensley Meulens has apologized for being in the cockpit of the team’s recent chartered flight -- an act which led to a Federal Aviation Administration safety investigation of United Airlines.

The incident occurred during the club's chartered flight to Toronto on April 10. Meulens posted a video to his social media account of himself sitting in a pilot’s seat while the flight was in the air. That post has since been deleted.

“Bam Bam [Meulens], he apologized,” Black said. “I can’t comment any further because there’s what’s being called an investigation of the matter. As far as Bam Bam goes, he apologized to the Rockies organization, to United and to the team.”

Black also said the incident will not jeopardize Meulens’ position as the team’s hitting coach.

A spokesperson for United Airlines issued the following statement, as reported by The Associated Press:

"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. 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."