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Use this tag for questions about emergency landings in water, in aircraft not designed for water landings. For emergency landings on land, use the "landing" and "emergency" tags instead.

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In an emergency near a remote island is it better to land resulting in the airport closing or ditch in the water?

Consider a landing at a remote island (like Easter Island or perhaps one with a calm lagoon, like YLHI) in which the aircraft is likely to crash and close the airport. (For example a gear-up landing ...
17
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2answers
5k views

Why would landing the space shuttle on water have been unsurvivable?

For an aircraft unable to reach a runway on land, ditching in water is a common and, generally, highly-survivable option; however, for the space shuttle, according to Wikipedia, "...an ocean ditching ...
34
votes
4answers
13k views

Why can't you ditch your aircraft in the sea?

Disclosure: I'm just a random guy who knows nothing about aviation. :-) I read: A voice in my earphones was shouting: “Ditch the plane! Ditch it in the ocean!” It must have come from the ...
2
votes
1answer
547 views

Can light aircrafts with no retractable landing gear make an emergency water landing? [duplicate]

In the suburbs of Lisbon today two people were killed because a pilot of a light aircraft (I imagine without retractable landing gear) landed on one beach full of people (it's Summer and the beaches ...
34
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5answers
12k views

Why choose to ditch in the sea over bailing out?

I recently watched the film Dunkirk (I highly recommend watching it). Without wanting to give away too much information about the film, a Spitfire pilot is flying over part of The Channel. They lose ...
10
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3answers
2k views

Why is ditching speed higher than stalling speed?

I was looking for a checklist for the Cessna 182 and I stumbled upon this one. When I looked at the speed-table, I found an interesting entry. It says "Ditching" with a speed of 65 KIAS: Everything I ...
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0answers
152 views

What is the standard protocol for landing on the ocean? [duplicate]

If a plane had problems whilst flying and had to land in the ocean, what is standard protocol for pilots and cabin crew to follow in order to try and keep everyone safe?
8
votes
1answer
657 views

For routes over oceans, are slide rafts fitted with first-aid items, food, water, radio, etc?

Nowadays life rafts are often replaced by slide rafts, the slides having a double function: Evacuation and when detached survival. However they are packed tightly in the aircraft doors, so they ...
21
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4answers
4k views

Are tail strike landings preferable for an emergency landing on water?

In this video, would it have been better if the pilot had attempted a tail-strike landing instead of a normal flare?
5
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2answers
747 views

Are airliners' pilots trained to safely ditch an aircraft?

After reading this question and these two answers it is clear that ditching is taken into account, at least for biggest airliners (and with reasons as it occured several times in aviation history). ...
4
votes
2answers
790 views

What is the probability that passengers can survive a ditching in a 747 at MTOW?

Let's suppose a catastrophic EFATO has occurred while climbing out of JFK from Runway 31L, the aircraft is at its MTOW and the best option is to set it down in Jamaica Bay. How long would the ...
19
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5answers
4k views

Why did this Cirrus deploy the parachute while ditching over Pacific Ocean?

In this incident near Hawaii, a Cirrus SR22 had fuel problems and deployed its airframe parachute. My question is why did the pilot deploy the parachute rather than perform a "normal" ditching ...
19
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7answers
31k views

Has a commercial airliner ever crash-landed in an ocean?

They have rafts and life jackets on board and before takeoff, passengers are explained how to use that equipment, but have any evacuations ever happened successfully?
19
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4answers
4k views

What are the risks in landing on a beach vs. shallow waters?

I recently read a story where a pilot of a light aircraft died having attempted to land on a beach. Would it be potentially safer to try an emergency landing on a beach, or go for shallow waters of 6-...
9
votes
1answer
724 views

Can water landing be simulated?

Is is possible for a flight simulator software to simulate the real time scenario of landing an aircraft on a water body. There are instances of this (Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961, US Airways Flight ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

What should a pilot do to perform a successful emergency water landing?

What should a pilot do to perform a successful emergency water landing, also known as ditching of a big commercial jet? Is there any checklist, or best practices, like "elevate the nose" or "retract ...
36
votes
3answers
13k views

How, exactly, did US1549 land on the Hudson?

A comment by @AsheeshR says: The Hudson River Landing was due to a combination of piloting skill and an autopilot system that was engaged right till impact and kept the plane in a controlled ...
27
votes
3answers
15k views

Why shouldn't you inflate your life vest until you're outside the airplane?

On commercial flights, in part of the pre-flight safety demonstration, you're told in the event of a crash, not to inflate your life vest until you're outside the airplane — why is this?
8
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2answers
3k views

How long can passengers survive after ditching in the ocean?

Assuming Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 ditched in the ocean, and surviving passengers and crew were floating around in their inflatable vests, how long could they survive? Is there data about the ...
13
votes
5answers
20k views

Can a commercial airliner sink to the bottom of the ocean?

Is it possible that a commercial airliner could hit the ocean surface at such an angle that it made a deep dive intact, got filled with water, sank, and got stuck in mud at the floor of the ocean?
15
votes
1answer
1k views

Why would an airplane be approved for ditching?

So, the Learjet 60 that I used to fly has the following limitation: My question, is why would a manufacturer certify an airplane for ditching if it isn't required? The airplane is most likely going ...