Monday, April 13, 2009

US Airways Flight 1549

US Airways Flight 1549, flown by Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger was a scheduled commercial passenger flight from New York City to Charlotte, North Carolina, that, on January 15th, 2009, ditched in the Hudson River adjacent to Manhattan six minutes after departing from LaGuardia Airport.

On it's initial climb the Airbus A320 struck a flock of Canada Geese which resulted in an immediate almost complete loss of thrust from both engines. When the aircrew determined that the plane would be unable to safely reach any airfield from its location just northeast of the George Washington Bridge, they turned it southbound and glided over the river, then ditched the airliner virtually intact near the USS Intrepid Museum in midtown Manhattan. After the 155 occupants safely evacuated the partially submerged and sinking plane they were all rescued by nearby watercraft.

The entire crew of Flight 1549 was later awarded the Master's Medal of the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators. The award citation read, "This emergency ditching and evacuation, with the loss of no lives, is a heroic and unique aviation achievement."

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