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Flight 1549 Crashes into the River Hudson in NY

So the story of the successful crash landing of flight 1549 into the River Hudson in New York was a heart warming one for everyone who heard it.
Indeed, many of the people who first saw this low flying US Airways Airbus descending rapidly through the city must have had initially horrifying memories of September 11, 2001, when two planes were flown into the twin towers with disastrous consequences.

But thanks to the ingenuity of one experienced pilot, the lives of 155 people aboard the airbus A320 plane were saved. In fact, so unharmed were every one of the cabin crew and passengers that the event has been hailed as a miracle.
The reason for the crash was not that unusual, though the manner of it was. Shortly after take-off from La Guardia airport last week the plane had flown into a large flock of birds. This can happen on plane journeys. What was so unusual was that this occurrence took out two of the plane’s engines.
However, it was the response of pilot Chesley Sullenburg which was truly amazing. Passengers on the plane have related how calm he sounded as he said “brace for impact’ and guided the plane down into the incredibly busy metropolitan area of the Hudson River. The angle of the plane’s entry into the water had to be just perfect to escape catastrophe, and it was. It is furthermore remarkable that he did so without hitting any of the boats in this bustling maritime channel.

Flight 1549 Plane Crash

Like a true captain, ‘Sully’ as this hero is now affectionately known, was the last man abroad the floating aircraft, walking up and down the cabin to make sure that there was no one left abroad.

Not everything went smoothly though as passengers had all crowded to one end of the plane and were thinking about opening the doors, an action which could have made the aircraft sink extremely quickly.
Unbelievably, some people on the plane even wanted to take their personal belongings with them despite the common knowledge that this is not a good idea, especially if you may have tread water.

In the event the biggest mistake made was by one passenger who took his trousers off anticipating having to swim, and who was then stuck outside in sub zero temperatures for almost an hour with bare legs.
So rare is such a successful crash landing with no casualties that spokeswoman for the National Transportation Safety Board Kitty Higgins said: “We’re going to look not just at what went wrong but at everything that went into making this event so survivable.

“A lot of things went right,” she continued, “not only the way that the crew functioned but the way that the plane functioned.”
Airports around the world will certainly be looking into their bird scaring technology after this incident. And one source of information which will not go untapped is ‘Sully’ himself, as aviation companies around the world seek to learn from his incredible experience.
Posted: 2/3/2009 7:12:54 AM by Global Administrator | with 0 comments

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