You May Never Fly Again After Watching This Airport Footage
By Mick Joest 2014-04-14 16:57:09
If you have a fear of flying it would be a terrible idea to watch this video. Then again, if you read that sentence and don't watch, you may live your life in fear not knowing exactly what you should be afraid of. Do you want to live your life in fear, or do you want to see what a crosswind can do to a plane landing? Itís sort of awesome, and at the same time equally terrifying.
Crosswind is literally defined as wind travelling across oneís direction of travel. Crosswind can happen all the time in all forms of transportation. In a car you may have experienced the effects of a crosswind if youíre driving and the force of wind from storm or another car shook your vehicle. When dealing in aviation it can be a little more difficult.
Crosswind can, in extreme cases (like this video), prevent a plane from landing on the runway. No, that doesnít mean youíre going to crash and die, but rather the plane will make another pass on the airport and attempt to land from another direction. Even in the most extreme cases, a crosswind will more often than not cause structural damage and not cause the whole plane to crash and burn with all the people inside it. Thatís all well and good, but it doesnít mean Iím going to be chomping at the bits to be experiencing it first hand.
Military planes such as the B-52 are equipped with special landing gear to counteract the effects of crosswind. The landing gear is doubled and steerable, allowing the plane to safely land in positions where itís nose is not facing straight ahead. Itís also worth mentioning that if you fly in a non commercial small plane, your chances of experiencing crosswind as bad as the ones in this video is significantly decreased. Itís good to know that in the 21st century man has evolved to combat the elements and such. Thereís still something about all of this thatís bugging me, however.
WHY DONíT COMMERCIAL AIRLINES HAVE THIS TECHNOLOGY? Granted Iíve only been flying once in my life, but I donít want my second experience to be some aerial rodeo for the world to enjoy on YouTube at a later date! You canít tell me that almost fifty years after weíve landed on the moon we couldnít have thrown on some military grade landing gear for the commercial airlines at a reasonable cost? The only thing I take solace in is that none of the planes experiencing crosswinds in this video crashed; so, at least the pilots got our backs.