FALSE ALARM

White House Sorry for Plane Scare

The White House has issued an apology after a low-flying jumbo jetliner escorted by military jets gave Manhattan workers quite a scare this morning. The jet, which serves as Air Force One, was circling the area for a photo-op, but the government failed to inform the public: Traders at the New York Mercantile Exchange, which sits blocks from the World Trade Center site, bolted for the door, and several other area buildings were evacuated. The Wall Street Journal reports that one trader on the scene said a Nymex security official was "literally standing, holding his hands up in a calming gesture. Guys were running right past him." Workers returned to their buildings after it became clear the Air Force planned the flyover. In a written statement, the Air Force confirmed the "aerial photo mission" and an FAA spokesperson said the Air Force coordinated the maneuver with the FAA and state and local officials. Note to Air Force: Next time avoid panicking the public.