A United Airlines 777 from Hawaii in December descended for 21 seconds into the ocean immediately after takeoff and reached within 800 feet of the sea, according to flight tracking data.
Nobody was hurt on United Flight 1722 on December 18, according to both United and the FAA. The data reveal that the plunge took place a little over a minute after launch.
According to the information provided by FlightRadar24, the aircraft plummeted more than half of its altitude and drew near to the ground by 775 feet.
Prior to resuming its ascent out of Kahului on the island of Maui, the aircraft gained speed as it descended from a height of 2,200 feet to 1,425 feet.
Feels like a roller coaster
When the Boeing 777 performed a scary dive immediately after taking off from Hawaii’s Kahului Airport, Rod Williams II and his family were in a seat near the back of the aircraft. After appearing to be flying regularly at first, the plane, according to him, briefly rose at “a worrisome rate.”
You had the impression that you were riding a roller coaster as you ascended. It was at that time, according to Williams. “The aircraft was filled with cries. Everyone was aware that something was unusual, or at the very least that this was out of the ordinary.
The aircraft then entered a “dramatic, nose-down” dive that lasted for eight to ten seconds before it began to ascend rapidly once more and resume normal flying.
With the FAA and the pilots union, United said it began an inquiry “that ultimately resulted in the pilots receiving extra training,” adding that the probe is still ongoing.
The pilots have flown for 25,000 hours in total.
As part of a program for voluntary safety reporting, the United Airlines flight crew informed the FAA about the occurrence. The organization investigated the situation and took the necessary action.
The National Weather Service said that day in Kahului established a daily record for rainfall, despite the fact that the weather at the precise time is unknown. The website Air Current broke the news of the incident, which is just now becoming public.
You are merely sort of grasping the seat.
For the passengers, it was a terrifying experience.
Multiple cries were being let out at that point, according to Williams, as the plane began to plunge. “You’re doing your best to be calm because there are definitely children on the airplane and because no one really knows what’s happening, but at the same time, you’re worried. You may not be aware of the problem, but it was uncharacteristic.
Williams claimed that he and his wife were sitting side by side with their children and exchanged glances as they descended steeply.
He remarked, “It’s tense, you don’t really have a chance to talk or to conjure words, you’re just sort of grasping the seat and praying under your breath.” We were hoping for a miracle because we believed this might be it, she confirmed when I asked her later.
After the event, flight attendants consoled a few passengers before making an announcement around 10 minutes later over the loudspeaker. You probably felt a few G’s on that one, but everything will be OK, someone from the pilot stated over the intercom. Williams remarked, “We’re going to be fine.
Williams had a college degree in aviation, so he had some understanding of what was going on, but his daughter, 10, and son, 7, had never flown before their trip to Hawaii, so they had no real understanding of what was going on. Williams claimed that although they were terrified, his son still wants him to play United by carrying him in the air.
The remainder of the flight was uneventful, but Williams reported a severe crosswind as they touched down in San Francisco. Then they boarded another plane for the trip back to Ohio.
Eight weeks after the trip, on Sunday night, Williams’ father showed him the incident report; up until that point, Williams was unaware of how close the plane had come to the ocean.
Williams claimed that in order for his children to enjoy future travels, he has attempted to keep his attention on the fantastic memories they have from what he calls a once-in-a-lifetime vacation.
We were about 5 to 5.2 seconds away from hitting the ocean, and now that I know statistically what had happened, you know, I’m absolutely counting my blessings, he added. “I’m reminded that there is a God who is here in that when my wife and I pray together before the flights,” the author said.
The pilots, he claimed, made “fantastic, incredible recovery efforts,” and for that they should be commended.
You read about these things, but experiencing them firsthand is just… sobering, you know? To be here today, I’m incredibly grateful.