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Southwest Airlines Plane Lands At Wrong Airport, Almost Careens Off Cliff
Forbes online ^ | Jan 12, 2014 | unknown

Posted on 01/12/2014 11:20:27 PM PST by zipper

"...scheduled to fly to Dallas with a stop in Branson, Missouri (BKG) but instead, the aircraft touched down at Taney County Airport (PLK), 8.6 miles away from its intermediate stop"

(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: airport; boeing737; braking; missouri; southwest
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TOTALLY unacceptable -- this crew almost met catastrophe by landing their 737 on a runway less than 4,000 feet long.

It's willful negligence not to confirm the runway you're landing on in a big jet equipped with GPS. Too much is at stake!

1 posted on 01/12/2014 11:20:28 PM PST by zipper
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To: zipper

“Wanna Get Away?”


2 posted on 01/12/2014 11:26:40 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: zipper

Two decades ago....most all airline pilots were former Navy or AF pilots, and paid at a sufficient level for their work. I’ve come to note over the past decade that we’ve gone to the cheapest way possible of getting airline pilots. A guy gets his license and thinks ‘big’ on the job....then six weeks later begins to realize that he’s overworked, and lacks the depth of experience that used to exist as the norm.

We all want cheap travel now, and this is the result of that desire.


3 posted on 01/12/2014 11:27:34 PM PST by pepsionice
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To: zipper

What do you mean by catastrophe?

If they are good they can land a 737 in as short as 3300 feet using 40 degrees flap, spoilers, and thrust reversers.

Santos Dumont Airport (IATA: SDU; Rio, Brazil) has a runway that is only 4341 ft. long. It receives 737s on a regular basis.


4 posted on 01/12/2014 11:30:29 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: dfwgator

[ding!]

“You are now free to move about the workforce.”


5 posted on 01/12/2014 11:32:24 PM PST by RichInOC (No! BAD Rich! (What'd I say?))
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To: Jack Hydrazine
If they are good they can land a 737 in as short as 3300 feet using 40 degrees flap, spoilers, and thrust reversers.

Would you consider them "good" if they can't find the right airport?

6 posted on 01/12/2014 11:33:16 PM PST by zipper ("The Second Amendment IS my carry permit!" -- Ted Nugent)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

If they drop all their passengers and cargo they can easily take off within about 3,000 feet.


7 posted on 01/12/2014 11:34:53 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: zipper

I wasn’t talking about finding the right airport. Only about the landing.


8 posted on 01/12/2014 11:36:01 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: Jack Hydrazine
What do you mean by catastrophe?

From the article:

Only after unloading the plane, did Mr. Scheiffer notice the gravity of the situation, noting “we have all deplaned from @SouthwestAir 4013, and the mood is somber now that we realized we were 40 feet from the edge of a cliff.”

I am sure that the landing would not be considered flawless were the aircraft to travel just 40 feet more. It's so bad that they cannot safely take off. What are they going to do, to extend the runway or to cut the airplane into pieces?

9 posted on 01/12/2014 11:38:45 PM PST by Greysard
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To: pepsionice
We all want cheap travel now, and this is the result of that desire.

That sounds great, except for one thing: airline travel is **much** safer now than it was twenty years ago. If you look at fatal accidents over the decades, prior to about the year 2000, US airlines saw about 1-2 "hull-loss" accidents involving mainline jet aircraft per year. Of course 2001 was a terrible year, with the 9/11 attacks and the American A-300 going down in New York a few months later.

But that A-300 went down over 12 years ago, and there has not been a *single* American hull-loss accident by a mainline air carrier since then - and there have only been 3 such accidents involving commuter airlines during that time, which is also a dramatic improvement over the 80s and 90s.

Yeah, these guys screwed up. It can still happen, and this could have been a catastrophe. But it wasn't, and catastrophes have become incredibly rare while airline travel has become incredibly safe.

10 posted on 01/12/2014 11:39:49 PM PST by xjcsa (Ridiculing the ridiculous since the day I was born.)
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To: pepsionice

“I’ve come to note over the past decade that we’ve gone to the cheapest way possible of getting airline pilots.”

Well, just be glad they aren’t hiring Koreans. I read a piece by a retired UAL Captain who went to work in Korea training for both KAL and later Asiana. He says that most of them can’t actually hand fly the aircraft. The Asiana crash at SF makes that crystal clear. I would never fly an Asian airline under any circumstances.


11 posted on 01/12/2014 11:40:37 PM PST by vette6387
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To: Greysard

Like I said before they can empty the aircraft of passengers and cargo and it’ll take off safely.


12 posted on 01/12/2014 11:40:47 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: Greysard
It's so bad that they cannot safely take off. What are they going to do, to extend the runway or to cut the airplane into pieces?

They're saying they are going to be able to take off. No payload and light fuel, with a decent headwind, should make it reasonably safe.

13 posted on 01/12/2014 11:40:47 PM PST by xjcsa (Ridiculing the ridiculous since the day I was born.)
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To: vette6387
Well, just be glad they aren’t hiring Koreans. I read a piece by a retired UAL Captain who went to work in Korea training for both KAL and later Asiana. He says that most of them can’t actually hand fly the aircraft. The Asiana crash at SF makes that crystal clear. I would never fly an Asian airline under any circumstances.

I read that piece too. Kind of scary.

14 posted on 01/12/2014 11:42:03 PM PST by xjcsa (Ridiculing the ridiculous since the day I was born.)
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To: pepsionice
I’ve come to note over the past decade that we’ve gone to the cheapest way possible of getting airline pilots.

You're right about that, though the government reacted to the Colgan crash by upping the minimum hours requirement to 1,500 hours for airlines like Southwest. So now new pilots have to work for slave wages even longer to make it to the majors.

Chances are pretty good the pilot involved had 4,000 hours in type, at least. Southwest only has 737's, so it's not likely this was a crew unfamiliar with the aircraft. And they get lots of landings, since the range is limited. There was an available instrument approach to help identify they were landing at the right airport -- no excuses for them.

15 posted on 01/12/2014 11:42:48 PM PST by zipper ("The Second Amendment IS my carry permit!" -- Ted Nugent)
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To: zipper

This seems to happen occasionally, wasn’t there a big cargo plane that accidently landed at a commuter airport a couple months back?


16 posted on 01/12/2014 11:44:26 PM PST by GeronL (Extra Large Cheesy Over-Stuffed Hobbit)
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To: GeronL

Yes, it was a Dreamlifter that landed at the wrong airport.

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/11/21/21559785-giant-boeing-747-freighter-successfully-lands-at-intended-airport?lite


17 posted on 01/12/2014 11:50:34 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: vette6387

Actually US-born Asians with US-FAA airline transport pilot ratings have to go work in the middle east because they hardly get decent pilot jobs in U.S. airlines even if they were USAF graduates.


18 posted on 01/12/2014 11:52:08 PM PST by hamboy
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To: Jack Hydrazine
If they are good they can land a 737 in as short as 3300 feet using 40 degrees flap, spoilers, and thrust reversers.

But the normal flap setting is 30 degrees, unless they know they are landing at a short runway.

19 posted on 01/12/2014 11:53:22 PM PST by USNBandit (sarcasm engaged at all times)
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To: Jack Hydrazine
"Let me ask you this, how many airports...are there?" one of the crew members is heard asking.

I believe nearly 8 airports surround Wichita, in the city limits or within a mile of it.
20 posted on 01/12/2014 11:55:52 PM PST by Crazieman (Are you naive enough to think VOTING will fix this entrenched system?)
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To: Jack Hydrazine
I wasn’t talking about finding the right airport. Only about the landing.

And I am saying they go together. I think finding the right airport is a generally accepted requirement for competence.

And since there is only one runway where they landed, and it was about half what they expected (at the other airport) then it's pretty important.

Not to mention I seriously doubt Southwest can dispatch to a runway only a little over 3,700 feet long.

21 posted on 01/12/2014 11:57:31 PM PST by zipper ("The Second Amendment IS my carry permit!" -- Ted Nugent)
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To: GeronL

Yes, a C-17 landed close to Tampa at a small airport, a similar screw-up. They also had only a few feet remaining by the time they stopped. The crew was replaced and the C-17 was flown out a few hours later, much to the embarrassment of the AF.


22 posted on 01/13/2014 12:00:06 AM PST by zipper ("The Second Amendment IS my carry permit!" -- Ted Nugent)
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To: USNBandit

Very true. 30 degrees flaps is standard. I’m sure that is what they were running on the landing at this airport.

I don’t understand why people are flipping out about this especially getting the aircraft out of that airport.

As long as they are empty of passengers and cargo, they have a good headwind (not difficult in the plains), density altitude is good, and loaded with minimal fuel they should be be able to a roll out and take off well before the hitting the numbers at the other end of the runway.


23 posted on 01/13/2014 12:02:38 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: zipper

There are three rules when flying that a pilot always needs to keep in mind at all times.

#1) Aviate - fly your airplane within its limits and within the FAR rules.

#2) Navigate - get to your destination correctly and on time.

#3) Communicate - Applies to your on-board crew and to those on the ground.

He got #2 wrong but it’s better than screwing up #1 and crashing.


24 posted on 01/13/2014 12:07:01 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: Greysard

JATO


25 posted on 01/13/2014 12:13:03 AM PST by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

I guess if you can’t get #2 right, #3 is flat out?

Are there no air controllers associated with these flights any more?


26 posted on 01/13/2014 12:16:58 AM PST by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: Cvengr

Yes, there are air traffic controllers that are watching and guiding the flights but this one slipped through the cracks.

In the future airplanes will be guided by an on-board flight computer only and the air traffic control system will be completely automated.


27 posted on 01/13/2014 12:22:22 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

I wonder what the tower said when they cleared the flight to land but it never appeared...:^)

The correct airport had a tower, the one they landed at did not. It could have scared the **** out of any local pilots having a 737 appear on what was probably a straight in approach!


28 posted on 01/13/2014 12:48:53 AM PST by az_gila
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To: dfwgator

The irony is that SWA is eliminating Branson from their route structure this year, along with Key West and Jackson, Mississippi.

As an aside, it’s interesting that the country’s most savvy airline is eliminating two popular tourist attractions in this “recovering” economy.

But, hey, two more jobs have just been created.


29 posted on 01/13/2014 1:59:56 AM PST by Laslo Fripp (The Sybil of Free Republic)
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To: pepsionice

You have it exactly correct. We have the same situation with the truck profession. It is a crime what is expected of truckers. Impossibly long hours every day for far too little pay.


30 posted on 01/13/2014 2:34:42 AM PST by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: zipper

Good one. It ain’t how short the runway is that is at issue. Its the inability to find the correct airport that is at issue.


31 posted on 01/13/2014 2:37:17 AM PST by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: zipper

You would think that after being “cleared to land on runway three-two” the PIC would have aborted the landing when he saw the “30” at the end of PLK.

I almost did the same thing many years ago approaching Ellenville (N89) instead of Wurtsboro (N82) but broke it off a half-mile out.


32 posted on 01/13/2014 2:43:58 AM PST by NY.SS-Bar9 (Those that vote for a living outnumber those that work for one.)
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To: pepsionice

And yet the US carriers are safer than they’ve ever been. How to explain that with the level of incompetence in today’s cockpits? /s/


33 posted on 01/13/2014 3:03:28 AM PST by saganite (What happens to taglines? Is there a termination date?)
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To: az_gila
I wonder what the tower said when they cleared the flight to land but it never appeared...:^)

Probably something similar to what I said when it happened to me, when I worked in a tower in Vietnam.

34 posted on 01/13/2014 3:08:56 AM PST by Mark17 (Chicago Blackhawks: Stanley Cup champions 2010, 2013. Vietnam Veteran, 70-71a)
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To: pepsionice

“most all airline pilots were former Navy or AF pilots, and paid at a sufficient level for their work”

Soooo true! I am a Navy jet pilot (O-5) who is current as an instructor in the T-45. I can’t get hired by the airlines. The HR folks have taken over the hiring part for the airlines and it is so touchy feely, guys like me have difficulty passing the strange psych tests (at least that is what I figure I am doing wrong).

As a matter of fact, I have been trying to retire the past six months, but I can’t get hired by anyone. Walmart corporate called, but I have to start out as a cashier.....too funny.....I have a USNA degree and an MBA, but the job market is so terrible, Walmart is the only callback out of 50 applications.


35 posted on 01/13/2014 3:09:19 AM PST by ThunderStruck94
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To: hamboy
“Actually US-born Asians with US-FAA airline transport pilot ratings have to go work in the middle east because they hardly get decent pilot jobs in U.S. airlines even if they were USAF graduates.”

What? I'd give anything to be Asian or Black right now as a pilot. It sucks being a white, middle aged, pilot trying to retire from the military and enter the airlines. I'd be hired today.

36 posted on 01/13/2014 3:13:06 AM PST by ThunderStruck94
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To: xjcsa

They could retrofit a few JATO units to be on the safe side.


37 posted on 01/13/2014 3:26:01 AM PST by soycd
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To: zipper

What about the trucking companies know their big rig(s) went off course, how can this happen?


38 posted on 01/13/2014 4:15:49 AM PST by Sir Napsalot (Pravda + Useful Idiots = CCCP; JournOList + Useful Idiots = DopeyChangey!)
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To: az_gila

My mother’s uncle recited this story. During WW2, he was on a bomber flying from somewhere in Texas to Newark NJ. There was light fog. The pilot asked the tower if they were clear to land at Newark. The tower said yes but we don’t hear you. (no radar then). The pilot said they would see the runway lights ahead. So, the tower told them, OK, it is clear to land, there are no other aircraft but we still don’t hear you.
As they were decending, my wife’s uncle started screaming to the pilot: PUll Up PULL up, it is the George Washington Bridge (maybe Cristi’s father had the lanes open?). They barely missed putting the plane into the bridge which would have been near the time a B25 crashed into the Empire State Building. So went his brush with fame.


39 posted on 01/13/2014 4:33:51 AM PST by Mouton (The insurrection laws perpetuate what we have for a government now.)
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To: ThunderStruck94

That is typical these days. I’m sure you have tried the major freight carriers as well.


40 posted on 01/13/2014 4:40:02 AM PST by HANG THE EXPENSE (Life's tough.It's tougher when you're stupid.)
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To: pepsionice
Two decades ago....most all airline pilots were former Navy or AF pilots...

I've been an airline pilot for 34 years. 28 at a major. You have no clue. You are not even half right.
41 posted on 01/13/2014 4:44:10 AM PST by Tzfat
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To: zipper

It’s the mark of a good pilot to be able to land anywhere.

Now if he is really good he will be able to persuade the NTSB and his supervisors that he was just practicing his emergency landing skills on a shorter runway and then watch his career really take off.


42 posted on 01/13/2014 4:46:20 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Jack Hydrazine
What do you mean by catastrophe?

If they are good they can land a 737 in as short as 3300 feet using 40 degrees flap, spoilers, and thrust reversers.

Santos Dumont Airport (IATA: SDU; Rio, Brazil) has a runway that is only 4341 ft. long. It receives 737s on a regular basis.


A B737 is capable of landing on short runways IF properly configured and pilot technique flown for a short field landing on a 4000 ft runway.

If you think you are landing on a 10,000 ft runway with plenty of room and have the plane configured for an easy landing with long roll out that minimizes wear and tear on the airplane like Southwest pilots are taught to do and you are actually landing on a 4000 ft runway - well, lets just say things could get interesting.

43 posted on 01/13/2014 5:12:24 AM PST by rdcbn
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To: pepsionice
I’ve come to note over the past decade that we’ve gone to the cheapest way possible of getting airline pilots.

And with ObamaCare, it'll become the same way with medical professionals.

44 posted on 01/13/2014 5:35:19 AM PST by COBOL2Java (I'm a Christian, pro-life, pro-gun, Reaganite. The GOP hates me. Why should I vote for them?)
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To: zipper
Where were the fed's "air traffic controllers?"
45 posted on 01/13/2014 5:39:24 AM PST by Whats-wrong-with-the-truth
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To: Tzfat

Care to elaborate?


46 posted on 01/13/2014 5:41:39 AM PST by SW6906 (6 things you can't have too much of: sex, money, firewood, horsepower, guns and ammunition.)
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To: rdcbn

Not to mention if the pilot “forgets” to use reversers, or company policy is to use idle reverse, or delays selecting reversers, or floats the transition, or loses an engine, or doesn’t apply max manual braking, or selects minimum autobrake, or, or, or...


47 posted on 01/13/2014 5:45:02 AM PST by SW6906 (6 things you can't have too much of: sex, money, firewood, horsepower, guns and ammunition.)
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To: SW6906

For the past 50 years, airline pilots have come from both civilian and military in varying percentage, but always around 50%. Ironically, OP was making a case against military pilots if he was correct in his assertion. The captain on the SWA was likely at least 20 years seniority, so if OP was correct, he/she was military. The fact is that that is an impossible and idiotic assertion that a crew on a major airline made an error because of where they were originally trained. A more logical (and yet not necessarily correct) hypophysis is that the culture and training at the AIRLINE they work for CURRENTLY is an issue.


48 posted on 01/13/2014 6:02:41 AM PST by Tzfat
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To: Jack Hydrazine

Pilot hubby says landing is not the problem....taking off from such a runway would be the difficult thing.


49 posted on 01/13/2014 6:03:29 AM PST by SumProVita (Cogito, ergo....Sum Pro Vita - Modified Descartes)
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To: GeronL

It happens more frequently than people realize and most often in clear weather.


50 posted on 01/13/2014 6:04:41 AM PST by SumProVita (Cogito, ergo....Sum Pro Vita - Modified Descartes)
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