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Thread: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

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    Administrator Basil's Avatar
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    Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    Now *that* was fascinating. Had no knowledge of that near-disaster. All crew and passengers survived - imagine if there had been (1) no ships in the area, and/or (2) the plane had had to ditch during darkness. I'm sharing this with our air museum group.

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    Quote Originally Posted by NutmegCT View Post
    Now *that* was fascinating. Had no knowledge of that near-disaster. All crew and passengers survived - imagine if there had been (1) no ships in the area, and/or (2) the plane had had to ditch during darkness. I'm sharing this with our air museum group.

    Thanks!
    Tom M.
    If either of those two things had been true the outcome would have been very different for those people.

    A year later:

    “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.” - Oscar Wilde

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    I remember when it happened. I remember the black and white TV coverage. Circling. The guy in a suit with his shoes on carrying his briefcase walking right off the wingtip into the Coast Guard boat.

    That's memory...didn't even look at the links.

    The movie "The High and the Mighty"? A friend told me the aircraft they used (DC-6?) later on in it's career had an actual in-flight emergency and set down in the Pacific just about where they were gonna set down in the movie.

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    Will they ever find Amelia Earheart?

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    Would be sheer luck in my opinion. She had a tendency to trust her instincts and didn't know how to navigate by position. There were apparently reports that a couple times during the round the world that she didn't do what Noonan the navigator requested and fortunately it worked out. But out over the ocean where you have no landmarks doing something different from the guy tracking position could put them anywhere in the very general area. Paul Mantz who helped prepare for the flight tried to talk her out of it he later told an interviewer because he felt she wasn't ready and maybe never would due to lack of interest in the details of long distance flight.

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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    I did not watch the films, yet, but read the Wiki page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pan_Am_Flight_6

    Basically, the crew knew they were in trouble at 1:30 AM, and doomed around 2:45 AM. Yet they flew until 6:15 AM, before which "several practice approaches were made to see that the plane would be controllable at low speed".

    Well done to the crew to be patient and methodical. Everything they did over the four hours makes perfect sense; being introspective, I do not think I could be so thoughtful or clear-minded in such a situation. Maybe adrenaline and training take over?

    Imagine being a passenger on the flight. Sitting in your seat, presumably half asleep through the droning of the presumably loud engines, you are informed that in 4 hours you may die. Wow. What do you do during the four hours? What options are before you? Write letters to those you love? Play cards with your seatmates? Drink liquor to oblivion and hope for the best? Have one drink to take the edge off? Stay sober because it will be best when it all happens? Increase my piousness and pray for four hours? Be calm and fall back asleep? I don't mean to make this a question of morals and such, but I really wonder how I would react in such a situation?? Then as you descend, your patience is tried through the many practice landings... in the passenger's head, there must be some element of "just get this thing over with!"

    I will never forget the one person I met from the miracle on the Hudson. He told me, his only wish was one more moment with his daughter.

    Wow. I am impressed by all souls that were on the airplane. I'll get off my philosophical box now!
    Mike
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    Re: Miracle on the Hudson? How about Miracle in the Pacific

    Not sure what I'd do with four hours to stew about finality... but one of my "Oh carp!" experiences was as an aircrew qualified photographer, we were in a UH-1, six photo guys and the two up front. A "Brave Shield" joint exercise at Ft. Bragg in N.C. Doors latched open, strapped into sling seats, we were spotting for camera positions to shoot the next day's airdrop of equipment and personnel. Altitude around 600FT. The Huey was suddenly spun into a nose-straight-up attitude and I felt some tremendous heat. Looked out and saw a giant sun that turned into the AB of an A-7 much too close up. He'd not been told of our scouting the dropzone, he was on a practice bomb drop. Felt like we'd been put into a clothes dryer. The 'copter pilot (Army W.O.) managed to get control JUST before we touched Mamma Earth. All that happened in seconds. The A/C then headed the Huey straight for the T.O.C. and put it down outside the tent. Different than fear at that point, it was anger. Maybe we were too young and/or stupid to panic (The W.O. had been shot down a couple times in S.E.A., I found out later). He and I got out and as we approached the TOC door, a Colonel stepped out and said: "Gentlemen, I'm going to take a short walk and smoke a cigar. The man you want to speak with is second 'scope on the left."

    Poor kid in the seat went white seeing two guys in 'green bags' coming at him... as he babbled some apologies. No physical harm was done but the fear was put into him to be more diligent at his job.

    The realization that with a less experienced pilot I'd have died, didn't hit until later.
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