Re: video of Al Haynes' talk at NASA Dryden available

From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
Date:         21 Jul 94 01:29:23 
References:   1 2
View raw article
  or MIME structure

>>The fact that 185 of the 296 people aboard survived is a tribute to
>>the skill and teamwork (and luck) of the pilots.

>   I feel forced to disagree with this statement.   I was there.  Yes,
>the flight crew did a fine job of bringing the aircraft down, but they
>didn't save all those people.  It was the efforts of local firefighters,
>first response teams, paramedics, hospital staff, and dozens of others
>who arrived before and after the crash, which saved the lives of many those
>passengers.

Yes, the rescue people did a superb job, aided by the advance notice
of a likely crash and, as I recall, the presence of a National Guard
unit training at the airport.

However, that aircraft was all but uncontrollable.  It's amazing that
it stayed in the air longer than the few minutes necessary to plummet
37,000 feet, never mind for over half an hour.  The best rescue folks
in the world couldn't have saved a single person if everyone aboard
was dead on impact in a crater many miles away.

As it was, the pilots gave the rescue teams at least 20 minutes notice
and put the plane down, in relatively large chunks, right in front of
their noses.  A remarkable number of people walked away from the crash,
too, with thirteen passengers being completely uninjured.  Many of the
other survivors had non-life threatening injuries such as various bone
fractures.

The rescue people did a superb job, but it's truly remarkable that
they had the chance, and credit for that opportunity goes to the
pilots.

--
Karl Swartz	|INet	kls@ohare.chicago.com
1-415/854-3409	|UUCP	uunet!decwrl!ditka!kls
		|Snail	2144 Sand Hill Rd., Menlo Park CA 94025, USA
 Send sci.aeronautics.airliners submissions to airliners@chicago.com