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Old 02-11-2009, 10:23 PM
 
5,772 posts, read 13,726,416 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighPlainsDrifter73 View Post
It's incidents like those posted here and my last experience flying (15 years ago) that I will never set foot on a plane again. I drive wherever I need to go. With the way I'm a white knuckle flyer, I would probably have had a heart attack with some of these stories posted here.

Thanks for posting guys, you have confirmed by correct decision never to fly again.
Maybe this makes no difference, but if possible, take a moment to think about the fact that all those people are still here to tell those stories.

I'm kind of the oppositie of HighPlains, being a pretty calm flier, though I've never had an experience like the worst ones related here. I was once on a flight up the east coast from J'ville to Providence, with a layover in Philly, that hit some pretty heavy turbulence on the Philly-to-Providence leg. One jolt of turbulence knocked a stewardess flat to the floor in the aisle next to my seat. I had bought a big jug of OJ during the layover in Philly, and downed the whole thing, so I found myself receiving a rather urgent call from nature about the time the turbulence led them to turn on the seat belt sign. Before long it became all too apparent that nature would not wait until I got to Providence. While inside the bathroom, I heard a stern voice on the PA, admonishing ALL passengers to STAY IN THEIR SEATS! So, I go back to my seat, only to see a stewardess go back and LOCK the bathrooms. I buckled in and just felt glad that I had gotten my turn in while the opportunity was available.

So, as I said, I'm a calm flier. I'm also used to flying into Boston, since I live in the area. Between the two, I've never given any thought at all to landing in Boston, but I've had people tell me that they find it scary. With most approaches over water, and the ends of the runways coming right up almost to the water's edge, people have told me that they get a very uncomfortable sense of being just a few feet in the air and still seeing nothing but water below, no sign of a runway. Must be a similar experience landing in D.C. at National. I'm told by those who find this kind of landing unnerving that arriving in Boston is especially scary at night. This would be especially true when approaching from the south. On the southern approach you can look out to the left and see the downtown buildings across the harbor. A few people have told me about some serious tightness in their stomachs when they look across at those buildings and see how low the plane is, then look down and see nothing below but blackness.

Never had the experience, but I'm told that at least one approach to San Diego is, um, interesting. The plane comes in over a hill with buildings all down the side, and just seems to be skimming the tops of the buildings as it follows the slope of the hill down to the runway.
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Old 02-11-2009, 10:57 PM
 
Location: Jersey City, NJ
638 posts, read 1,956,659 times
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Reno seems to be notorious for turbulence.

I was never afraid to fly until hitting horrible turbulence on the way into Denver on a flight from Miami. The flight was pretty uneventful until our approach and we had to descend into a severe thunderstorm. I never knew a plane could be tossed around like that. There was no warning. Just after the turbulence started, the pilot came on and said "everyone sit down and do not get up again until we have landed". He sounded a little tense and that made me worried something was wrong.

The experience was very similar to all of the other stories posted in this thread. People were screaming and crying. The luggage compartments were making a lot of noise, I could hear the engines throttling up and down. We were being tossed up and down and side to side. This went on for about 40 minutes.

When we finally hit the runway there was a very calm voice saying "welcome to Denver. The current time is..." like nothing had happened. I guess it was just business as usual for the crew, but as for the passengers, we were terrified. Worst thing was that I had to get on another flight about an hour later to make the final jog into Las Vegas. I spent it at the bar trying to calm down.

I was afraid to fly for a long time after. I finally got comfortable flying again all these years later, but on my last flight I hit similar turbulence over the Rocky Mountains. I handled it much better this time.
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:39 PM
 
Location: Downtown Dallas / Deep Ellum
52 posts, read 156,860 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ogre View Post
Never had the experience, but I'm told that at least one approach to San Diego is, um, interesting. The plane comes in over a hill with buildings all down the side, and just seems to be skimming the tops of the buildings as it follows the slope of the hill down to the runway.
san diego airport approach - Google Video
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Old 02-13-2009, 12:52 AM
 
5,772 posts, read 13,726,416 times
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Jsoto, good idea about linking to the video. San Diego clearly has more really built up land all around the field than you find in the airports in many cities. Several of the videos on that page really capture the sense of hovering very close above the buildings. The cockpit video also gives a good view of crossing the freeway and then following the building tops down the side of a hill that leads to the runway. Yeah, landing in San Diego could be interesting.

I'll follow suit with the videos. Below is a link to videos of approaches to Boston's airport. The sixth one listed on the left (also the ninth one, which is the same video), with the title "Really nice landing into Logan Intl. . . ." when it's about 20-30 seconds in briefly captures a pretty good sense of the view that might lead a passenger to hope that someone named Sullenberger was flying the plane, because you appear to be very low above the water, and getting lower quickly, with no solid earth anywhere in sight ahead. The second video in the lefthand menu ("Landing in Boston"), is longer, but if you stay with it all the way until the plane lands, it gives a pretty good sense of the "Sullenberger Effect" on approach to Boston.

http://video.google.com/videosearch?...ng&hl=en&emb=0

Last edited by ogre; 02-13-2009 at 01:01 AM..
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Old 02-13-2009, 04:34 PM
 
Location: SEA/HNL/OC
86 posts, read 308,683 times
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YouTube - Cathay Pacific (CX) 747-400 Landing in SFO (Sanfrancisco)


landing into boston is just like landing into san francisco.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:26 PM
 
5,772 posts, read 13,726,416 times
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Yeah, SFO was another airport I thought about later, some time after the post where I suggested Nat'l. as another airport with that over-water approach. Great video of the landing at SFO. The view of the hills in the background, looking straight at the sides of the hills instead of looking down on them from above, really gives a sense of being very low for still seeing nothing but water beneath you.
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