Boeing 747-400LCF Dreamlifter

This week: Dreamlifter landed at wrong airport, LAX security scare & more

Another week has passed and it’s therefore our job to once again recap some of the main airport news articles from the week. This week we have the following for you:

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) saw a scare on Saturday when a car crash caused a panic at the airport. L.A. Times reported that some people thought the crash sounded like gunfire. And the LAX Twitter account said about 60 flights were delayed, affecting 4,600 passengers. According to the news article Los Angeles World Airports spokeswoman Nancy Castles said that shortly before 7:30 p.m., airport police responded to a report of shots fired at Terminal 5. When they arrived, they found that a traffic accident outside the terminal had caused a loud noise, prompting travelers to evacuate onto the sidewalk. At the same time, an anonymous caller reported seeing a man with a weapon at one of the gates in Terminal 4, Castles said. Police responded, evacuating and sweeping the terminal “out of an abundance of caution,” she said. No gunman was found. The incident occurred three weeks to the day after a gunman sprayed bullets across a crowded Terminal 3, killing a Transportation Security Administration officer.

We’ve seen it before and it sure happened again: The Wall Street Journal reported this week that a Boeing 747 jumbo jet, named ‘Dreamlifter’ (similar to the one pictured) used to haul large plane parts for manufacturing was temporarily stuck at a small Kansas airport after it mistakenly landed there amid apparent confusion by its pilots. According to the article the unusual landing occurred late Wednesday at Colonel James Jabara Airport, about 8 miles north of the jet’s intended destination of McConnell Air Force Base (IAB). The plane is one of four 747s modified to carry big body and wing parts for Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner between factories around the world. Boeing and operator Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Inc. Thursday morning devised a plan to get the jumbo jet out of the tiny airport, which required bringing in a modified truck to turn the plane around 180-degrees. It departed later that day and landed safely at its intended airport.

Then there was news from Russia when Passenger Terminal Today informed us that the Government of Russia had announced plans to create an airport for low-cost carrier airlines, which will relieve passenger traffic from other airports located around Russia’s capital city Moscow. According to the article the new airport had been deemed necessary after officials said the Moscow region’s three existing airports – Domodedovo, Sheremetyevo and Vnukovo –  will not be able to accommodate for the predicted high levels of growth in passenger volumes. The new hub will be built on the site of the current Ramenskoye Airport, which serves as an aircraft testing facility for the Ministry of Emergency Situations and cargo transportation. A first terminal is said to become operational by late 2015.

And to finish the week off, we found an amusing article from India. Times of India reported that the annual anti-hijack drill at the Chennai airport (MAA) on Tuesday turned out to be a comedy of errors. Apparently the exercise coordinated by several agencies including CISF, Indian Coast Guard, Indian Army and the local police was supposed to test the airport’s preparedness in handling an emergency if a hijacked passenger aircraft lands at the airport. It ended up being a series of mistakes which but for its grave import would have been a comic show. The article highlighted a number of issues, from language barriers between “hijacker” and “negotiator” to a crash tender parked at the wrong spot. We think, it’s a good thing this was just a drill!

Safe travels everyone!

[Picture from Wikipedia - some rights reserved]

  • claudine mann

    I just read about the Dreamliner earlier today and when I read this, I instantly thought that this is yet more bad publicity for Boeing. Good thing though that they managed to get the Dreamlifter out of the wrong airport. I just read that there are “small” planes that do this specific kind of job. I just wonder how it’s possible. I mean, it looks so small yet it can carry large objects. Does it use load cells? It would be advisable in order to avoid overloading and so preventing further mishaps.

  • Pingback: This week: The wrong airport & amnesty boxes | LateDeparture.com