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Topic: Limited Scope Of This Thread - Moving WN Jet
Username: KarlB737
Posted 2005-12-11 15:04:26 and read 2083 times.

This post or thread is focused on the task of removing the jet only. It isn't for the NTSB investigation or anything else. All of that is on other threads.


The Task Of Removing WN Jet From Street

Courtesy: The Chicago Tribune

An Excerpt:

After 2 Tries, Jetliner Removed From Street

By Lisa Fleisher
Tribune staff reporter
Published December 11, 2005

Performing what an investigator called a "minor engineering miracle," nine agencies needed five hours, two action plans and 25,000 pounds of pressure Saturday to move the disabled Southwest Airlines plane off Central Avenue and into a hangar at Midway Airport.

Though considered a fairly routine procedure, ice and a city fire hydrant complicated matters, officials said.

Crews began preparing on site about 8:15 a.m., but didn't try to move the plane until shortly after 11 a.m., according to Robert Benzon, the National Transportation Safety Board investigator in charge.

The original plan was to secure a belt around the belly of the plane and use a crane to lift it off the ground.

The crews would then roll the plane backward using the mobile crane as "the literal front wheels of the airplane," Benzon said.

They soon encountered their first obstacle. The crane operator became a bit nervous, Benzon said, when the nose wouldn't lift off the ground.

Finally, after applying 25,000 pounds of pressure, the nose of the plane broke free and lifted off the ground, where investigators discovered it had been jammed onto a fire hydrant.

For the rest of the article which will require registration:,1,4809119.story?coll=chi-news-hed


Courtesy: WBBM-TV

Best and clearest stills I have seen yet:

Courtesy: Chicago Tribune,1,5572122.photogallery?index=1

Topic: RE: Limited Scope Of This Thread - Moving WN Jet
Username: Neilking
Posted 2005-12-11 15:21:06 and read 2046 times.

Quoting KarlB737 (Thread starter):
Best and clearest stills I have seen yet:

Courtesy: Chicago Tribune

Certainly agree - in picture 14, the plane looks like it's having a snooze!

And fire chief Cortez Trotter (great name!) looks like some dude!

Topic: RE: Limited Scope Of This Thread - Moving WN Jet
Username: LFutia
Posted 2005-12-11 17:54:50 and read 1972 times.

continuing on from the article....

"It looked like the hydrant was the last hard, fixed object that it hit and kept it from going any further," said Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford.

At that point, investigators changed plans and brought in a flatbed truck, laid the nose on the end of it, then tried to restart the process.

Weather once again caused trouble for the crew.

The truck's wheels spun on the icy street, a product of both the firefighters' original efforts to stave off a blaze after the crash and the snow that accumulated since then.

Trucks came in, salted and sanded the area, and a few minutes later, the plane was on its way back into the airport.

By 2:30 p.m., it was completely within Midway's boundaries. At 4 p.m. the plane was in the hangar propped up by jacks.

"For all intents and purposes, we are done with the accident site itself," Benzon said. "Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to investigations."


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