goosebayguy
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UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:56 pm

 
mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:05 pm

A sunny weather forecast sounds scary in Daily Mail.

I highly doubt the plane just fell out of the sky. It seems like they had a reason to divert back to St. John's and you can't land if you don't descend.

So basically, according to this article, they "plunged 20,000 feet" because a passenger who watched the descent on the seat back screen saw them descending.

My disgust for the Daily Mail seems to have no limits.
 
Unflug
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:28 pm

Quoting goosebayguy (Thread starter):
Sounds pretty scary!

Can't help, but that article sounds pretty funny rather than scary to me  
 
bohica
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:30 pm

Quoting MikeCT (Reply 1):
A sunny weather forecast sounds scary in Daily Mail.

I highly doubt the plane just fell out of the sky. It seems like they had a reason to divert back to St. John's and you can't land if you don't descend.

So basically, according to this article, they "plunged 20,000 feet" because a passenger who watched the descent on the seat back screen saw them descending.

My disgust for the Daily Mail seems to have no limits.

I have to agree. The sidebar stories in the same article looks like TMZ and the National Enquirer run amok.

I'm sure we will find out what the real reason was, not the Daily Mail's version.
 
BestWestern
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:34 pm

Quoting MikeCT (Reply 1):
you can't land if you don't descend.

Perfect response!
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ikramerica
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:34 pm

Plunged this isn't. Accelerated decent to get back safely probably. That customers could feel the g's probably raised the eyebrows, but hardly as if it was so intense that it could rip the wings off.
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UAL777UK
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:10 pm

Quoting goosebayguy (Thread starter):

Its when I read stories like this rubbish in the Daily Snail, that I am embarrased to be British.

Quoting MikeCT (Reply 1):
you can't land if you don't descend.

Exactly.
 
roseflyer
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:12 pm

I wonder if daily mail would call an idle descent to 20,000 or 18,000 or 10,000ft plunging. It wouldn’t surprise me if they did.

20,000ft is a strange altitude to have a plunging descent to. If they lost both packs and pressurization, a 757 has about 4 minutes to get to 10,000ft without hitting the cabin altitude alarm. That’s a fast descent, but they wouldn’t stop at 20,000ft. If it was a single pack failure, they might go down to 20,000ft, but that would be an idle descent because there’s plenty of time not to run into the cabin altitude limit. An engine failure wouldn’t cause pilots to immediately want to lose altitude. Altitude is your friend and again it would be a slow descent to single engine operating altitude.

Or maybe the pilots decided that LHR is far too important of a market for a 757 to fly to from IAD, and they felt that Newfoundland was more appropriate for the 757, so they decided to go there instead.

[Edited 2012-07-16 10:14:41]
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UAL777UK
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:20 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7):
Or maybe the pilots decided that LHR is far too important of a market for a 757 to fly to from IAD, and they felt that Newfoundland was more appropriate for the 757, so they decided to go there instead.

I suspect that is really the case and that UA are going to open up a huge hub there. I am surprised this was not reported in the Daily Mail  
 
mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:22 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7):
20,000ft is a strange altitude to have a plunging descent to.

It is, which is why it seems like they were just descending to land. But that being said, it's very possible they did continue down to 10,000. The only sources in the article are from confused passengers.
 
AADC10
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:32 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7):
20,000ft is a strange altitude to have a plunging descent to.

It is, but they stated that they started at FL400, which seems rather high. Since the information was only observed by passengers on their seatback maps, it may not have been recorded accurately. They may well have gotten down to 10,000 ft because of a depressurization warning and turned back to North America.
 
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135mech
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:35 pm

Descending to 20,000 ft (however they did it, plunging or not) gets you out of the air traffic main altitudes and gives you time to dump fuel and plan your re-route with out affecting the other commercial mainline traffice routes.

We (KC-135's) would drop down there (or near 20K) for our operations just for being away from the rest of the air traffic.
135Mech
 
yvrtoyyz
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:04 pm

From the CADORS:

UAL130, Boeing 757-200 was enroute from Washington (KIAD) to London (EGLL), routing 49N040W at 03:04Z, at 39,000 ft., NAT Track V. At 03:24Z, the flight declared an emergency (engine out) and descended to 28,000 ft. The flight received clearance to St. John’s (CYYT) and landed safely at 05:15Z.

http://wwwapps.tc.gc.ca/Saf-Sec-Sur/...=&acmodelcd=&evnts=&evtype=0&narr=
 
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DocLightning
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:10 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7):
20,000ft is a strange altitude to have a plunging descent to. If they lost both packs and pressurization, a 757 has about 4 minutes to get to 10,000ft without hitting the cabin altitude alarm. That’s a fast descent, but they wouldn’t stop at 20,000ft. If it was a single pack failure, they might go down to 20,000ft, but that would be an idle descent because there’s plenty of time not to run into the cabin altitude limit. An engine failure wouldn’t cause pilots to immediately want to lose altitude. Altitude is your friend and again it would be a slow descent to single engine operating altitude.

If they had an IFSD, wouldn't they drift down from FL 400 to about FL 200 or below?
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mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:22 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 13):
If they had an IFSD, wouldn't they drift down from FL 400 to about FL 200 or below?

I believe the 757 can fly at around FL 270 to FL 250 with an engine out. But that information is surprisingly difficult to find online. I'm sure someone here as a more accurate answer to that. I'm sure that's all it was, drifting down.
 
joeljack
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:31 pm

http://flightaware.com/live/flight/U...0/history/20120715/2249Z/KIAD/CYYT

It was only about 500 miles east of St John's when it turned around....maybe even less. In addition, it looks like in the first 7 minutes of the problem, it only lost 240 ft of altitude.
 
roseflyer
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:33 pm

Quoting MikeCT (Reply 14):

I believe the 757 can fly at around FL 270 to FL 250 with an engine out. But that information is surprisingly difficult to find online. I'm sure someone here as a more accurate answer to that. I'm sure that's all it was, drifting down.

It really depends on weight. Single engine cruise is in the 20s on a 757.

Also, drifting down is a recommended way to manage the one engine. It should be a controlled descent to a sustainable altitude. It should not be an emergency descent.

[Edited 2012-07-16 12:00:33]
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flybry
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:38 pm

The Daily Mail is the Jerry Springer of "news"
 
mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:44 pm

Quoting Joeljack (Reply 15):
In addition, it looks like in the first 7 minutes of the problem, it only lost 240 ft of altitude.

There's a lot of Flightaware estimating going on just as they begin their descent. So that might not be entirely accurate.

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 16):
Also, drifting down is not a recommended way to manage the one engine. It should be a controlled descent to a sustainable altitude.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't "drifting down" more of the just the term that's used? As far as I understand it, descending after an engine failure involves consulting a chart for best speed and maintaining that speed to control your descent to the desired altitude. Weren't/aren't they even called drift down charts? I'm getting this information mostly from various other people I've talked to so don't beat me up if I'm not even close.
 
sshank
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:45 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7):
Or maybe the pilots decided that LHR is far too important of a market for a 757 to fly to from IAD, and they felt that Newfoundland was more appropriate for the 757, so they decided to go there instead.

I am with the pilots on this one. I think LHR should only be served by widebodies  
 
roseflyer
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:50 pm

Quoting MikeCT (Reply 19):

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't "drifting down" more of the just the term that's used? As far as I understand it, descending after an engine failure involves consulting a chart for best speed and maintaining that speed to control your descent to the desired altitude. Weren't/aren't they even called drift down charts? I'm getting this information mostly from various other people I've talked to so don't beat me up if I'm not even close.

Yes that is exactly what I was referring to. That's certainly not plunging or dropping like the article implied. It's requesting a lower altitude and then descending to it. I didn't indicate that very clearly (so I edited the post).

Based on altitude and cruise mach number, there is a maximum EPR for single engine operation. There is a chart that gives descent speed based on weight and gives the level off altitudes. The engine inop data tables provide the altitude that the airplane should be leveled off at. For a 757, it's in the 20s for the most part, but a fully loaded 757 on a hot day is limited to about 18,000ft on single engine operation.

[Edited 2012-07-16 12:01:01]
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NorthstarBoy
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:50 pm

One of the calls I got at work last night was from a passenger on UA 130 right after they had diverted. She mentioned that they had diverted due to engine trouble so the idea of an inflight engine shut down makes sense. I didnt get any more details than that, we were more consumed with trying to find a way to get the passenger from Newark, where she said they were sending them back to, to her final destination.

Also interesting that in the GDS flight information screen, UA listed the cause of the diversion as being weather related at first. It was happenstance that there were thunderstorms in the NY area last night, which led me to wonder at first if the diversion was turbulence related. Later on, once the flight had been canceled, UA did add information that the cancelation was due to a mechanical. The only reason I knew that the diversion wasn't weather related was from talking to one of the passengers. Kudos to AC for taking care of UA's passengers at 3 in the morning, even offering breakfast vouchers. Equal "kudos" to UA for trying to dodge responsibility by calling weather on the diversion, which puts the reaccomodation under rule 260, the weather rule, vs rule 240.
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richierich
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:54 pm

The article states there were 50 passengers and 9 crewmembers. IF this can be trusted - yeah I know, a big "if" - it seems very light, no? Nine crewmembers? Were some deadheading?

[Edited 2012-07-16 12:09:42]
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aztrainer
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:04 pm

Quoting richierich (Reply 25):
The article states there were 50 passengers and 9 crewmembers. IF this can be trustedy - yeah I know, a big "if" - it seems very light, no? Nine crewmembers? Were some deadheading?

I was thinking the same thing.

When I read the article about the 20,000 ft plunge and read about the crew running around all I could think of was, "How could they run if they were "plunging" due to zero gravity.....
 
bohica
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:37 pm

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 17):
And United needs another reason for NOT flying 757's to Europe . All 757 should be removed from the Atlantic.

An engine out situation can happen on ANY airplane.
 
EY460
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:39 pm

The scariest thing (for United revenue department) was that the load was 50 pax!
 
AussieItaliano
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:17 pm

The Daily Mail also reported that the flight was halfway across the Atlantic. I looked on Flight Aware, and it appears that this flight turned back to St. John's when it was about 300 miles east of Newfoundland - hardly halfway across the Atlantic! Typical of the Daily Mail!
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DocLightning
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:30 pm

Quoting NorthstarBoy (Reply 21):
Equal "kudos" to UA for trying to dodge responsibility by calling weather on the diversion, which puts the reaccomodation under rule 260, the weather rule, vs rule 240.

I almost feel like that's standard procedure. I once had an AA flight from JFK to SFO canceled because of "weather." Curious weather that makes a bunch of guys open the engine cowling and stand around scratching their heads.
-Doc Lightning-

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usxguy
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:32 pm

I just looked at today's seat map and I'm surprised its not packed to the gills. Only 3 F seats of 16 taken.. holy moly.. I remember a time when every UA flt to London was packed.... what's happening?!
xx
 
Motorhussy
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:54 pm

Quoting usxguy (Reply 28):

Most people are flying BA and VS?
come visit the south pacific
 
AA757200
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:57 pm

Interesting note:

'The Boeing 757-200 carrying 50 passengers and 9 crew members landed safely and without incident.

Nice load.
 
TC957
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:05 pm

what's happening?!
Maybe people are cancelling because they know of the awful summer weather we are having in the UK this year ! That and huge immigration queues, sky-high hotel costs in & around London because of the Olympics and the highest rate of Air Passenger Duty taxes anywhere would have me looking elsewhere for my vacation as well.
 
greenwichsud
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:23 pm

Quoting usxguy (Reply 28):
I remember a time when every UA flt to London was packed.... what's happening?!

it's unfortunate, and a bit surprising at first glance, that UA cannot fill a 757 from an east coast fortress hub to LHR in high season (even with the Olympics ongoing). upon second glance:

Quoting NorthstarBoy (Reply 21):
Equal "kudos" to UA for trying to dodge responsibility by calling weather on the diversion, which puts the reaccomodation under rule 260, the weather rule, vs rule 240.

it becomes very clear why they are unable to do so

#racetothebottom

[Edited 2012-07-16 14:24:34]
 
Mir
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:32 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 13):
If they had an IFSD, wouldn't they drift down from FL 400 to about FL 200 or below?

If you're on the NAT tracks, a driftdown might interfere with other aircraft, especially if you're going to reverse course. Better to get down below them quickly and then proceed to your diversion airport. The lack of radar coverage means there are more requirements for separation that need to be maintained.

Quoting bohica (Reply 24):
Quoting jfk777 (Reply 17):
And United needs another reason for NOT flying 757's to Europe . All 757 should be removed from the Atlantic.

An engine out situation can happen on ANY airplane.

   Same thing would have happened on a 767, 330 or 777.

-Mir
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ContnlEliteCMH
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:34 pm

Quoting sshank (Reply 19):
I am with the pilots on this one. I think LHR should only be served by widebodies

I'd take a 757-200 with only 50 passengers on it any day over a stuffed widebody. 50 passengers means I probably get an entire row to myself. That could be the most comfortable transatlantic flight I'd ever take if I can't sit in first.
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Tbone354
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:44 pm

Right you are. An engine out can happen in any plane. It happened to me in a Beechcraft Sundowner just after takeoff. Problem was, the Sundowner only has one engine! Also, one must understand the media. Their job is to exaggerate, sensationalize, and build whatever mountain out of the molehill story they are given. It is no longer about the news. It is more about the story. Beam me up.
 
Eljonno
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:50 pm

I'm just hugely disappointed that two graduates from my alma mater university thought it would be okay to give interviews to the Daily Mail. Educated people (especially those educated at Exeter...) should know better than that and I might well consider sending an email to registry services to get their degrees revoked!

Another thing I always find strange when these 'terrifying' situations are reported is that the passengers who get interviewed are always convinced that not being told what is happening immediately somehow equates to the crew being reduced to a state of incompetent panic.

The flight got back to Newfoundland safely and I have no doubt whatsoever that the crew concerned on this flight did everything exactly as they should, ergo none of the passengers were in any danger; and their only discomfort came from being misinformed by their misconceptions about what should have been happening around them in an emergency situation.

[Edited 2012-07-16 14:53:00]
 
mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 10:42 pm

The Aviation Herald is reporting on it now. Seems like a quiet descent down to FL 280. Without the moving map, no one would've even noticed.

http://www.avherald.com/h?article=452c4069&opt=0
 
deltal1011man
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:02 pm

Quoting bohica (Reply 24):

No. Only a 757 can have an engine out going into Europe from the US. A 47,67, T7, 87, 330/340/380 all have a magic power that prevents this.

Anyone know what the most engine outs are across the Atlantic? My guess would be the PW4000 or GE CF6
 
freakyrat
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:02 pm

I was a passenger on United Flight 58 a Boeing 767-400 on June 27th from IAH-AMS when the Captain announced that we would be diverting to Newark because he had lost his PFD (Primary Flight Display) and couldn't get it restarted. We were also heavy and dumped fuel over North Carolina and southern Virginia and also we were diverted around the Washington DC Special Flight Rules Area descending through 13,000 feet. It was controlled and orderly and we landed at Newark had the display replaced and took off two hours later for an uneventful flight across the Atlantic.

In the case above with the B757 a trained crew made the proper decision just like our crew did and it was controlled descent into Newfoundland.

O'h incidentally Our plane to AMS was completely full.
 
DLMD90
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:03 pm

Quoting usxguy (Reply 28):
I just looked at today's seat map and I'm surprised its not packed to the gills. Only 3 F seats of 16 taken.. holy moly.. I remember a time when every UA flt to London was packed.... what's happening?!

LOL. Have you flown on the NEW United lately?  
 
mikect
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:12 pm

Quoting DeltaL1011man (Reply 38):

Magic, you say? Who knew? Live and learn.  
 
tonymctigue
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:53 pm

This sounds like the typical Daily Mail attempting to make headlines where there are none. Correct me if I'm wrong, but what this article describes sounds to me like the standard procedure for loosing an engine i.e. a rapid descent to a lower altitude where the air is denser and then divert to your alternate airport? The sooner the Daily Mail succombs to the slump in the newspaper market the better.
Airports: SNN GWY NOC DUB ORK BOS EWR JFK ORD MCI BOI SEA LHR STN CDG LYS FAO GVA HKG MEL ADL HBA
 
RP TPA
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:58 pm

FYI, there was more to this incredibly dramatic "20000 ft drop" than what was reported. According to un-named sources, the plane also tilted a few times to the left and to the right while it was enroute to the airport.  
 
tonymctigue
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:15 am

Quoting RP TPA (Reply 43):
FYI, there was more to this incredibly dramatic "20000 ft drop" than what was reported. According to un-named sources, the plane also tilted a few times to the left and to the right while it was enroute to the airport.

Not to mention all these things that started popping out of the wings and out of the belly of the plane on final approach, sometimes making grinding noises in the process and after they parked at the gate, a big gaping hole appeared in the fuselage and luggage started falling out.
Airports: SNN GWY NOC DUB ORK BOS EWR JFK ORD MCI BOI SEA LHR STN CDG LYS FAO GVA HKG MEL ADL HBA
 
tp1040
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:16 am

Funny, the AV herald report stated that it was a mechanical issue and the pilots shut down the engine as a precaution.

Of course, the DM gives the impression that the engine malfunctioned, emergency decent and the pilots made a miraculous recovery after a 20,000 foot free fall. Good work by the writers at the DM, they got their story linked on A.net.

Just another example of why I loath today's reporters. (I refuse to call them journalist)
 
billreid
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:24 am

the bad part is they reported on 50 passengers on board.
In July...
Before the London Olympics...

How likely is that....
Some people don't get it. Business is about making MONEY!
 
windowflyer
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:37 am

Quoting RP TPA (Reply 43):
FYI, there was more to this incredibly dramatic "20000 ft drop" than what was reported. According to un-named sources, the plane also tilted a few times to the left and to the right while it was enroute to the airport.

I heard the wings started to separate and expand just before landing too.

Tony beat me to it.

[Edited 2012-07-16 17:40:12]
A-300,319,320,321,330,340,380. B-727,737,747,757,767,777,787. L-1011,DC8,DC9,MD80,CRJ,Dash-8,YS-11,HS-748,Concorde
 
brilondon
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:51 am

Quoting flybry (Reply 17):
The Daily Mail is the Jerry Springer of "news"

The Daily Mail is such a respectable periodical so that everything is the truth in that paper. The UFO and Big Foot stories must have been on the next page.
Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
 
dirtyfrankd
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RE: UA Flight Drops 20,000ft Mid Atlantic

Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:52 am

The terrible post-merger integration and Smisek's awful awful leadership led to this!!!   

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