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US Airways Flight Crashes Upon Takeoff - 148 Passengers Okay

Posted by Jane Akre
Thursday, January 15, 2009 6:11 PM EST
Category: On The Road, Major Medical, Protecting Your Family, In The Workplace
Tags: Airplane Crash, Mass Transit, Personal Injury

US Air flight goes down in Hudson after engines hit a flock of birds.


  • US Airways phone number 1-800- 679-8215.  #


IMAGE SOURCE:  Reuters Web site A320 downed


150 people onboard a US Airways plane appear to be alive after the A320 dove into the Hudson River after takeoff from New York's LaGuardia Airport.

Passenger Alberto Pinero tells CNN, “you just heard a loud bang and the plane shook a bit”.  Everyone got off the Airbus A320 as the plane floated in the river after a relatively soft landing, described as a “big splash” in the water.

A witness, Alex Whittaker, tells Reuters, "I saw the plane coming in very low but under control, it splashed down in the water. Once it cleared it was still floating on its belly.”

"The doors opened and we could see life rafts and we could just about see a few people climbing out onto the water," he said.

It was snowing and below 20 degrees in New York at the time of the Thursday afternoon incident. Water taxis and ferries hurried out to rescue passengers who said they smelled smoke just before the crash. The pilot had reportedly radioed to air traffic controllers that a flock of birds went into the engine before he declared an emergency.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture tracks all reported bird/wildlife strikes to aircraft in the US. Over 38,000 strike reports from 1,300 airports were compiled from 1990 to 2001. The Federal Aviation Administration estimates that number is about 20 percent of all strikes that have occurred.

There are 150 seats on the A320 and US Airways reports there were 148 passengers and four to five crew.  

Relatives of those aboard US Airways Flight 1549 headed to Charlotte, North Carolina can call an emergency phone number 1-800- 679-8215.  #

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