Thursday, January 15, 2009
NEWSFLASH: US Airways Flight Crashes in Hudson River, 155 Survive
At around 3:30 PM, US Airways flight 1549 from LaGuardia Airport in New York City bound for Charlotte, North Carolina had a "controlled landing" in the Hudson River. The pilots had reported earlier that the plane, an Airbus A320, came across large groups of birds and eyewitnesses reported an explosion from the engines shortly before it hit the water, consistent with engine failure due to encounters with birds. The water temperature was approximately 11* F at the time of the crash and early recovery operations. The plane remained afloat, tail down, throughout the rescue operations. Local ferries responded quickly to the downed plane by suspending all service from their 39th Street Terminal and using them to rescue the approximately 155 life-jacket-wearing passengers and crew. Authorities such as the NYPD, FDNY, Red Cross, and state agencies also came to the plane's aid quickly. Several tugboats were seen latching onto the plane to keep it afloat. Survivors were taken to various area hospitals in NYC and New Jersey. Mayor Michael Bloomberg held a news conference at around 6 PM gave a briefing of the events while commending the rescuers involved. The mayor, an experienced air pilot, also stressed that air travel was safe and that there were indications at the time that terrorism was involved. He also stated that not enough information was available at the time and that the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is heading to NYC to investigate. Governor David Patterson said that it was a "miracle on the Hudson."
>>>US Airways Website
>>>ABCNews: 'Happy to Be Alive': Dramatic Rescue After US Airways Jet Crash Into Hudson River