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Aviation Safety - NTSB Report On US Airways Flight 1549

by John M. White |  | 7 comments

The NTSB issued its final report on the U.S. Airways Flight 1549 accident which landed in the Hudson River last year, and as expected it determined the probable cause of the accident was ingestion of large birds into both engines causing an almost total loss of thrust. Captain Sully Sullenberger No one would argue that the crew performed flawlessly resulting in no loss of life and getting the best result out of a bad situation possible. The NTSB stated that effective crew resource management, the proximity of rescuers and the performance of the cabin crew were major factors in a successful outcome. And yet the NTSB came up with a laundry list of safety recommendations along with a list of things that went wrong and could be improved upon. Good visibility and calm waters helped, along with the fact that everyone on board was rescued within 20 minutes. One of the more interesting notes was that most bird strikes occur withing 500 feet of the ground while, in this case, the aircraft was at 2,700 when it struck the geese. The investigators pointed out that this demonstrates bird strike hazards to commercial aircraft are not limited to any predictable scenario. Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch! JetAviator7 ps: Don't forget to sign up for our newsletter "All Things Aviation" here!

Comments (7)

  • admin on June 24, 2019

    I have looked into the matter regarding the “Miracle On The Hudson” and frankly it is a long document and I haven’t had the time to read through it.

    The pilot in command is always going to receive some blame for any accident; that’s just the way it is.

    The problem always is none of us, including the NTSB investigators, weren’t there when the decisions were made. In the end everyone survived and an airplane damaged. It is always easy to second guess and Monday morning quarterback, but by now with all the media attention and awards no one is going to change their mind no matter what the details are.

    Trust me this happens a lot.

  • Dave Brough on June 24, 2019

    “No one would argue that the crew performed flawlessly resulting in no loss of life and getting the best result out of a bad situation possible…”.

    “No one would argue…”? Then allow me to be the first. This ‘crew’ did not perform “flawlessly”, in failing to keep their eyes on the job, it (meaning Sullenberger and Skiles) performed with a reckless disregard that should have earned them jail time. And I point the finger at Sullenberger who started it with his yakking on his cell while taxiing at one the busiest airports in the world – a violation of the Sterile Cockpit Rule. He did it again during Climb Out when he was gawking the “beautiful view of the Hudson” – another violation. But even worse, he then distracted the man actually flying the aircraft – Skiles – so that instead of flying the plane he, too, was playing tourist. After impacting the birds and things spooling down, Sully grabbed control, which because that’s the easy part, is always the function of the less-experienced crew member. Not here. Then he wasted valuable time on the APU, which he should have known started automatically. He called ATC, but stepped on the controller. He forgot to declare a MayDay. He forgot to use 121.5. He forgot his call sign. He said he was going one place (back to LGA), but went another. He tasked Skiles with the re-light using a procedure specifically designed for 30,000’ and above. He pushed the nose down to gain airspeed, as opposed to using the positive speed to bank his most precious resource: altitude. He turned downwind, forgetting that you land INTO the wind. This meant that he also had to navigate a 600-foot obstacle called the George Washington Bridge.He forgot that when you land, you use the flaps – and when Skiles reminded him, he said ‘Naw…". He forgot to hit the ditch switch. He even forgot to advise the cabin what the heck they were doing. He ignored the aircraft’s best airspeed, even though Airbus stuck it right before his eyes. He impacted at four times the G’s than necessary (hence the great gapping hole and the flooding). Even when down on the river and pandemonium reigned, he forgot to use his cell to call 911 and advise what was going on. But he did call his wife.
    Still think he performed “flawlessly”…? Come on.

  • admin on June 24, 2019

    I have no idea where your information comes from, nor what expertise you bring to the conversation.

    However, having said that I am sure we would all be very interested in learning any facts and their source to substantiate the statements made above. If true, some of them could cast a different light on what happened, and as aviators we all want to learn from every accident and incident involving the aircraft we fly.

    I look forward to your reply.

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