Emergency landing

steve

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#1
Well, back now from a weeks rest in Tenerfife, however the flight home on the new Dreamliner was eventful as we experienced an emergency landing at Gatwick early this evening.

We were circling over Gatwick for more than twenty minutes, with complete radio silence when a member of the cabin crew announced that we needed to prepare for an emergency landing, instructing all passengers to fasren seatbelts and to turn off all devices/remove earphones, and then to prepare to assume the brace position when informed to do so.
Before most of the passengers had time to compute what he had just said, the shout came out to do as we were told, and to assume the brace position.

This we did and the plane descended, landing on the tarmac with a terrific thud and very loud roar(reverse thrust?) from the engines, followed by very fast deceleration before coming to rest halfway down the runway, with Fire appliances et al following us until we stopped.

There followed a loud round of applause (relief) and then the Captain's voice announced in a very calm manner the reason why the emergency landing was necessary:

During preparation for landing, the flaps on both front and back of the wings had failed to operate, and the nose wheel would not come down either - thus the reason for circling, as they crew attempted to resolve the issues and plan for the necessary emergency to follow.

In the end, they managed to get the nose wheel down, and the flaps to operate enough to make a landing possible, so they went for it.

When the plane came to a stop, we had to wait to be towed off the runway and parked up at the nearest practical location, then we were escorted off and bussed to the terminal to wait for our luggage.

During this event, several passengers became very traumatised but were very quickly attended to as soon as the plane had stopped.
My wife was badly shaken as she is not a great plane passenger at the best of times, so I took great care to comfort her as best I could.

Thankfully all are safe and well, and we are now home.

The crew were exemplary, even though they admitted that they had never had to carry this action out for real before - just goes to show that you can never have too much training for such events.

I'll be keeping a close eye on the wife tonight and tomorrow in particular - ironically although she hates flying, she always watches those Aircrash Investigation programmes.

We are off to Canada in September, so I'm hoping that enough time will have passed between now and then for her to be less concerned than she naturally is right now.

Me,
Well - at the time I was so busy trying to comfort my wife that I never gave a thought to anything else, least of all what the outcome might be.

Now, upon reflection, I can see that we were 342 very lucky passengers, and along with the crew, we won't forget this day for the rest of our lives.

Steve
 

Meat Grinder

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#3
That sounds like a close call, and I am glad it turned out well, Steve.

I am done with flying. Did my fill of it, and between close calls like what you just described, and the general inconvenience of modern commercial airline travel, I am completely, irrevocably done with it.

I have the good fortune of living on a huge continent, and can drive anywhere I want to go. :)

Don't show your wife this. ;-)

 

Badger73

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#4
<snipped>
The crew were exemplary, even though they admitted that they had never had to carry this action out for real before - just goes to show that you can never have too much training for such events.
<snipped>
Amen, brother! Training is everything. Your family are clear beneficiaries. Glad you're both home safe.
 

steve

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#7
Thanks all for your wishes and kind thoughts.

I'm just ready now to get on with life and not worry too much about what happened, but I'll be supporting my wife as this has affected her quite badly.

Steve
 

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#8
Damn thats scary. Wonder what the procedure would be if that wheel didnt come down... Im suspecting circle to lose all the fuel then try and drift it in with the nose in the air..... you guys were lucky. Someone had your back. Glad you are all ok...hope your wife gets over it or it'll be caravans at Skegness or cruises for you guys.
 

steve

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#9
Damn thats scary. Wonder what the procedure would be if that wheel didnt come down... Im suspecting circle to lose all the fuel then try and drift it in with the nose in the air..... you guys were lucky. Someone had your back. Glad you are all ok...hope your wife gets over it or it'll be caravans at Skegness or cruises for you guys.
Thanks - we will definitely be flying to Canada in September as it's a holiday that we've had planned for four years, from the minute we got back from the last time we visited.

The wife is much better today too, which is encouraging - she's a tough old stick.

Tonight we are going out with friends for a bite to eat, and that will aid the healing process no end.

Steve
 

steve

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#11
Yeah... must have been quite a shock but statistically your more likely to get hit by a car.. careful out there tonight.

I've just been out on the motorbike for a very nice hour long ride, that really is therapy for me - the wife has been out food shopping - life back to normal.

Going to watch the England vs Sweden football match this afternoon, and at some point sort through the photos I took in Tenerife and perhaps post a few here.

Have a good weekend.

Steve
 

steve

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#13
Wow, scary, glad it worked out. I hope your visit to Canada is uneventful - well the flight anyway.
Cheers.
Flying into Calgary then heading west over the Rockies to Vancouver, then on to the island for a few days before returning to Vancouver to fly home.
Can't wait to go, Canada is so beautiful and vast, oh......and the steak is quite good too!!

Steve
 

A Canadian Cat

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#14
Cheers.
Flying into Calgary then heading west over the Rockies to Vancouver, then on to the island for a few days before returning to Vancouver to fly home.
Can't wait to go, Canada is so beautiful and vast, oh......and the steak is quite good too!!
Sounds good - The drive over the Rockies is very nice. You will be flying over me twice then. And yeah Calgary is the centre of steak country.
 
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