2009-01-15

Thoughts on Flight 1549


By now, most everyone has heard about US1549, the flight that landed in the Hudson. It's now about 12 hours since all the excitement and the good news is that everyone survived.

I first heard about this flight when my Twitter feed exploded with activity. As with the Mumbai terror attacks, reports showed up in Twitter before they showed up in mainstream media. This is an important sociological shift that we see happening. The entire industry of breaking news is changing right in front of us. And not only are we lucky enough to witness this change, we are lucky enough to particpate and cause the change.

So after flipping through some Tweets, I quickly check my team's calendars to make sure none of my employees were on the flight, and then waited for more facts to come in.

It speaks to the excellent training of the pilot and crew, and their skill, that this did not become a disaster. It also speaks to the great engineering over at Airbus that the plane survived the water landing long enough for everyone to get out.

This also demonstrates the tremendous strides the NY area has made in cleaning up the river. Twenty years ago I imagine the fuselage would have just dissolved in what we called "water."

The bridges would have made this nearly impossible on the other side of the island. And in most other bodies of water, there would not have been so many watercraft readily available to rescue people.

And now we know that the whole water landing demonstration in the safety demo isn't just for show. A water landing is survivable when everything else falls into place.

US Airways is no longer listing the flight as delayed.

This is a fairly tactful way to do it.

Flight Stats, and website that tracks aircraft, however, still needs to update their descriptions. Apparently the flight is twenty minutes late.

Here is map showing more data about he flight.

I think the 300 foot altitude is an estimate.

And here's a view of where they think the plane is now.

I guess the current is pretty strong to pull it out of the river and all the way to NJ. (Actually, the plane is currently tied up in lower Manhattan.

And I never thought I would make a sentence like that in my life.

4 comments:

Daisy said...

Daisy's mom here:
My father was a commercial pilot for decades, and retired as a captain for Delta. (He passed away a couple years after his retirement). Anyway, as has already been mentioned many times, the pilot on that flight was a true hero. I think his quick decision making, skill and calmness saved those lives.

storybeader said...

great reporting and photo! Thanks!

Paul said...

The most interesting thing to me about this is that tweeter got the news before mainstream media did. That's amazing, I wonder how news will travel 3 years from now...

Bryan Karl said...

I've heard the pilot and the crew are really well trained. If not, there would possibly be casualties. I hope accidents always happen in a peaceful way.