A Wing and a Prayer: Safety Concerns Over Red Bull's 55-Year Old Seaplane

The plane's pilot, Lynn Hunt, refused to speak with ABC News about the plane's safety, saying, "I was told to tell you no comment."

In its written response to questions, Radden, the Red Bull spokesperson said it was "a misconception" that the plane had a "definitive life limit."

Radden did not directly answer the discrepancy in flight hours but called the official Coast Guard records "inconclusive and incomplete."

The FAA had actually grounded the plane in 2007 after the discovering of the flight hour discrepancy but relented after the plane's owners hired a Washington law and lobbying firm to protest.

Instead, the FAA issued the "experimental" airworthiness certificate, apparently giving some consideration to the economic plight of the owner, John Shoffner of Flight Management Resources.

"We hope this solution will allow Mr. Shoffner to realize some, albeit limited, economic value for his airplane," wrote Carol Giles, the assistant Deputy Director of Flight Standards Service at the FAA.

Red Bull Plane Flies Over Venues at Major Cities

In addition to the restrictions of flights over heavily populated areas, the FAA said "no person may be carried in this aircraft during flight unless that person is essential to the purpose of the flight."

Red Bull said it strictly follows the FAA restrictions and "does not fly unauthorized people on the aircraft."

Red Bull said that under the terms of its FAA certificate it is permitted to "carry passengers from time to time."

Red Bull says its plane flies over big cities and events with large crowds, including the Super Bowl festivities, "under the direct authority of the FAA and by direction of air traffic control."

Last year the plane flew over 15 air shows and sports events including heavily-attended venues in suburban Washington, D.C., Detroit, San Francisco, Seattle, San Diego and Las Vegas.

Eric Longabardi is a freelance journalist who is a frequent contributor to the ABCNews.com investigative page.

This post has been updated.

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