How does a pilot miss an entire airport?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by TonyB, Apr 5, 2006.

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  1. TonyB

    TonyB Intern

    Mar 20, 2006
    I am not a pilot but I would have thought it wasn't that hard to find the actual airport? This fortunately turned out ok, but I imagine the outcome could have been a disaster :shock:,5744,18661747%255E29677,00.html

    IT was Ryanair that pioneered the art of flying passengers to some far-flung airfields and telling them they had arrived in one of Europe's loveliest cities.

    So it should have come as no surprise to travellers on board Flight 9884 from Liverpool to Derry, in Northern Ireland, when they landed not in the city but Ballykelly Camp instead - an army airfield 8km away.

    Ryanair passengers are also accustomed to not having an air-bridge to get them inside the terminal, but in this case they didn't even have any steps to get them off the jet. Luckily, the flight's original destination was close enough for ground staff to bring the steps by road to the army base.

    Britain's Civil Aviation Authority began an investigation on Wednesday into how the civilian Airbus carrying 39 passengers and six crew touched down at the virtually disused base, better known as Shackleton Barracks, outside Derry.

  2. QF WP


    Jun 20, 2002
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    Discussed over on the QF Forum of Flyertalk a couple of days ago (read from post #1197 onwards). Shouldn't be easy to do, but it's still done :oops:
  3. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
    Canberra / London
    Hey Tony B,

    I am a pilot and it's really not that difficult to do.

    Don't tell me, you've never taken a wrong turn when driving your car.
  4. TonyB

    TonyB Intern

    Mar 20, 2006
    Hi Clifford,

    Please tell me you rely on more than a street directory? :D I have kinda been putting some faith in what I had hoped was some fairly advanced navigational equipment, especailly when a $40 GPS can get me to within a couple of metres of where I want to go.

    Having said that, I do appreciate that people make mistakes (I would just prefer to think of the captain of a commercial aircraft as a little more infallable than most - at least when it comes to landing :wink: )
  5. markis10

    markis10 Veteran Member

    Nov 25, 2004
    BNE & SYD
    The running rabit strobe lights in Melbourne were put in after a few airliners tried to land at Essendon rather than tulla.
  6. TonyB

    TonyB Intern

    Mar 20, 2006
    It is probably only a matter of time before someone attempts to land on Coronation drive in Brisbane after the addition of what almost looks like runway lighting at night.
  7. oz_mark

    oz_mark Enthusiast

    Jun 30, 2002
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    I think you will find that things like this happen more than you think. Certainly I have read various stories of planes lined up to land at the wrong airport, but someone notices before things go really wrong.

    You need to understand, people make mistakes, and most of the time they are picked up and corrected before anything terribly bad happens.

    In this case, I am sure the ivestigation will result in some actions to help ensure it doesn;t happen again.
  8. NM


    Aug 27, 2004
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    Please tell me where I can get one of those $40 GPS things. All that I have seen, especially any that are WAAS capable (needed for accuracy down to a couple of metres, but only works in North America, EGNOS now available in UK) are way more expensive than $40.
  9. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    Many wrong turns but always end up at the desired destination.

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