Tuesday, September 28, 2010

JFK Emergency Landing

In case you missed it, a Delta CRJ-900 made an emergency landing at JFK on Sunday night after a malfunction in the back-right landing gear. The plane landed and then skidded on its wing to a rest in a shower of sparks. A passenger captured the final moments on a cell-phone camera. At 0:12 you can hear the plane touch down and it takes until about 0:18 until you start seeing sparks, which means that the pilot was able to keep the wing off the runway for a good 6 seconds.
I like how at the 0:24 mark after the plane has been skidding for a while (and has not yet veered off the runway or otherwise become destroyed) the flight attendant gives out a triumphant "Heads down! Stay down!" You can sense in her voice that they are gonna make it.

And of course, the spontaneous cheers and applause are nice. I smirked at this because on virtually every foreign airline I have flown on (save British Airways, but including LanChile, Austral, Aerolineas Argentinas and EgyptAir) the foreigners always applaud the landing. Even in perfect weather. But then again, in Argentina we always applaud the asador - we are a very grateful people I guess. (<-- By the way, I am always shocked at what you can find on YouTube.) One final item you may have missed, which appeared in the NY Daily News today, is that there have been 5 similar incidents with the CRJ in the last two years. This, of course, is problematic, and the Daily News writer explains why (with tongue firmly in cheek):

"...Landing gear being generally recommended for the landing portion of a flight..."

Although, I would go a step further and say "properly functioning landing gear being generally recommended for the landing portion of a flight..." Right JetBlue?

These are facts.

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