LOT 767 pilot becomes national hero after emergency landing drama
The pilot who safely landed a Boeing 767 at Warsaw international airport on Tuesday after the landing gear failed to open emerged as an unassuming hero at a press conference, yesterday.
“I am sure that each of us [pilots] would have done it the same way, and that the results would have been the same,” said Captain Tadeusz Wrona, after the landing gear of his Boeing 767 failed to work as the plane approached Warsaw airport Tuesday afternoon.
The plane skidded to halt on its belly in what was a smooth landing after the runway was prepared with safety foam by emergency staff.
The aircraft carrying 231 passengers was flying in from Newark, New Jersey, US, but the captain revealed that it was not until the very last stage of the journey that contingency plans had to be made.
“The notion that we would be forced to crash-land came to me three to four minutes before touchdown,” he said.
“It was a normal landing approach,” he added.
“The critical moment only came on the first attempt to release the landing gear near Warsaw airport.”
Captain Wrona proceeded to land the plane on its underside, without the aid of wheels.
“We felt relief when we drew up softly and the plane came to a halt,” he said. “But I felt a full wave of relief when the chief flight attendant told us that all the passengers had got off the plane.”
The pilot admitted that he has not been sleeping normally in the wake of the incident.
However, he hopes to continue work as normal, and may indeed be flying to Hanoi this Saturday.
“I have flown that plane 500 times, and this is the first time that the landing gear did not open,” he said. http://thenews.pl/1/9/Artykul/57861,LOT-767-pilot-becomes-national-hero-after-emergency-landing-drama