Thursday, July 27, 2006

Nose Collapse

I visited the Pittsburgh airport today for a meeting with some US Airways maintenance personnel. Just before lunchtime, one of the maintenance guys who was escorting me received word of a “nose collapse” at the gate. It sounded pretty dramatic to me. As it turned out, a nose collapse means that the landing gear failed and the nose of the aircraft fell straight to the ground.

The passengers on board the plane must have experienced a very strange sensation as the front of the plane dropped ten feet to the ground. The people were deplaned, and the aircraft was jacked up and strapped to the back of a flatbed, then towed into the hangar. Dozens of maintenance workers dropped what they were doing to come out and watch its arrival around lunchtime. I don't want to offer too much commentary lest I offend my hosts at US Airways, but I will say that it was a really cool thing to see. When I walked through the airport shops later in the day, all the staff and crew members were still buzzing about the accident.

I can only post the pictures published elsewhere by the media. For example:

What a great day to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the US Airways maintenance facility! Well, not so great for US Airways I guess.

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