SEATTLE – It was a thunderous wake-up call just before 9 a.m. Tuesday morning. The steely nerves of construction crews working at Sea-Tac Airport were shaken to their foundations.
“Something was not right. Something was absolutely not right. He was way too low to be here, that's for sure,” said construction foreman, Rich Binckley.
An Emery Air Cargo [DC-8] plane roared dangerously close to the ground. witnesses say it was lower than the 230-foot fog -shrouded air traffic tower currently under construction.
“You see that tower right there? We expected a big bang. It scared the crap out of everybody,” said construction worker, Brad Duncan.
“It happened so quick after the fact I thought what would I do to survive – it was headed straight for us,” said construction worker Joe Fuchs. “A plane so big there was nowhere to go, that's what was scary about it.”
The FAA says the emery cargo pilot was supposed to land on runway 16-R but instead drifted about a half mile off course, actually crossing over another runway and busy air cargo road while aborting the failed landing.
“He was considerably drifting off course and we want to know why and how,” said FAA spokesman, Mike Fergus.
Its not a great-written story, but seems that none of the other Seattle media has picked up on it.
I wish I would have been there
So how does a DC8, on the ILS approach (1/4 mile visability at the time!) get so far off the localizer to end up over International Blvd. and almost clip the new control tower?!
DE727UPS From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 814 posts, RR: 13
Reply 1, posted (14 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1409 times:
What was the RVR....1/4 mile vis is pretty low. I'll tell ya though, shit happens when you been up all night and have to fly a low vis ILS, possibly by hand. I hate doing that. I've seen old autopilots do some strange things, too. This is not a high tech, auto-land, airplane. Making no excuses for the crew, it shouldn't have happened.
N766AS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (14 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1370 times:
I was listening to ATC earlier and RVR was almost down to minimums... about 1800. Visability at my house this morning was ZERO, and I am about 6nm from SEA. I guess I can understand how, in the frenzy of the moment, something can go wrong.
Cargyvr From Canada, joined Jul 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (14 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1367 times:
On Seattle news this morning they said SEATAC was on a low visibility standby with emerg. equip. out ready to roll if needed. At YVR (vancouver) we got a few aircraft that diverted from SEA. TWA, AA Flights etc.