Why It’s Still Safe To Fly With Engine Failure
For first-time flyers, there’s nothing more terrifying than the little shudder and deceleration you feel right before the pilot comes on the PA system and announces that they’ve shut down the aircraft engine. Passengers will suddenly remember the headlines they’ve seen over the years: the 2010 Qantas flight 32 which had catastrophic engine failure four minutes after takeoff from Singapore, or the 2009 US Airways Flight 1549 incident where the pilot had to land in the Hudson River after losing both engines to bird strikes, to name a few.
Fortunately, while losing an engine sounds scary, there’s no reason to panic. Engine failure is so rare, when it does happen, it’s immediately turned into sensationalized headlines in every media outlet. Engines may shut down during flight for any number of reasons, ranging from the ingestion of material, like hail or a bird, to a system malfunction. Most of the time, passengers won’t even notice the difference.
Jet airliners are always equipped with at least two incredibly powerful engines. In the US, it’s mandated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) that jet airliners be able to safely operate with only one engine, even through takeoff. Of course, with one engine down, the airliner’s range is significantly reduced and will usually divert to the nearest airport, but it can still fly. In fact, even with total engine failure, it’s not likely that the plane will just drop out of the sky.
In the case of total engine failure, the movement of air over and under the aerospace wings is enough to allow the airplane to glide. And that’s exactly what happened with US Airways Flight 1549. That’s also what happened in the 2001 Air Transat Flight 236, when the airplane lost all engines due to improper maintenance; they still managed to travel nearly 20 minutes without power and land safely without casualties in the Azores.
Flying can be scary, but it shouldn’t be. It’s a common and popular form of travel because it’s so safe that it’s statistically got a lower risk than driving a car does. But, at ASAP Distribution, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we know it’s important to have peace of mind. So, as a premier aviation and aerospace parts distributor, we make sure to always stock the highest quality parts, new and obsolete for all your mission-critical and AOG requirements. Visit us at www.asap-distribution for a quick quote.