15 January-Flight 1549

US Airways Flight 1549 was forced to make an emergency landing in the Hudson River between New York and New Jersey in January 2009 when it suffered complete engine failure due to bird strikes. All passengers and crew were saved in what became known as the ‘Miracle on the Hudson’. The ditching of the aircraft is regarded by many as the most famous forced landing of all time

US Airways Flight 1549 took off from La Guardia Airport in New York on a scheduled flight to Charlotte Douglas International Airport in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA. The Pilot was Captain Chesley Sullenberger. The First officer Jeffrey B. Skiles was at the controls. The plane, an Airbus A320 had 150 passengers and 5 crew on board. Just over three minutes into the flight the plane struck a flock of Canada geese. By then it had reached an altitude of almost 900m (3000 feet) and was about 7km (4.5 miles) from the airport. The plane lost power in both engines and Capt. Sullenberger took the controls while First Officer Skiles tried to restart the engines.

The crew quickly decided that they would have to make an emergency landing. When they realised that they would be unable to reach any airfield they turned the aircraft in the direction of the Hudson River. The aircraft was successfully ditched in the river and all 155 persons on board, safely evacuated the airliner. They were quickly rescued by commercial vehicles on the river. Captain Chesley Sullenberger was the last to leave the plane.

Sullenberger, who had served as a pilot with the US Air Force had been a commercial airline pilot for 29 years. The successful emergency landing made him and instant hero and an international celebrity. The event was described as ‘the most successful ditching in aviation history’ by a member of the National Transportation Safety Board.

US Airways Flight 1549 was brought to a safe landing on the Hudson River, New York in the year 2009 On This Day.

US Airways Flight 1549 Plane Crash Hudson in New York taken by Janis Krums on an iPhone by davidwatts1978 on 2009-01-15 14:12:23

Chesley Sullenberger photo

Captain Chesley Sullenberger and Wife Lorrie




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