armed forces search A320 through 130 passengers on plank after that lands in ~ the not correct airport in south Dakota


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Passengers ~ above the Delta trip had to wait around 2½ hrs while Ellsworth air base personnel searched the plane. Photograph: Alamy
Passengers ~ above the Delta flight had to wait around 2½ hrs while Ellsworth air basic personnel searched the plane. Photograph: Alamy

A Delta air Lines jetliner with 130 passengers on plank landed in ~ the dorn airport in southern Dakota on Thursday evening, stated a spokesman because that the nationwide Transportation security Board, which is investigate the incident.

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The Delta A320 landing at Ellsworth air pressure base at 8.42pm central Time top top Thursday, when its scheduled destination was a nearby airport in fast City, NTSB spokesman Peter Knudson stated on Friday.

Ellsworth is about 10 mile (16km) due north of rapid city local airport. The 2 airports have actually runways that space oriented practically identically come the compass, from north-west to south-east. Delta trip 2845 had departed native Minneapolis.

A passenger interviewed by the quick City Journal stated she and also her fellow passengers waited around 2½ hrs in the airplane at Ellsworth, whereby they to be ordered come pull under their home window shades as equipped military personnel walked through the cabin v a dog.


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This was not the an initial time airline pilots have actually mistaken the air force base because that the quick city airport. In 2004, a Northwest Airlines trip carrying 117 passenger to rapid City landing at Ellsworth. The airplane remained top top the floor for much more than three hours as the pilots described to air force security officers what walk wrong, and a new crew to be dispatched to proceed the flight to rapid city.

Northwest and Delta linked in 2008.

Delta has actually contacted the passengers “and offered a gesture of apology for the inconvenience”, the airline stated in a statement.

The crew has been taken off duty if NTSB investigates, the statement said. “Delta will completely cooperate with that investigation and also has currently begun an inner review of its own,” it added.

The air pressure said in a statement basic officials “followed the appropriate procedures to address the situation” and ensured the safety and security of those in ~ the base and also passengers.

Citing security reasons, basic officials decreased to prize questions regarding the specific procedures followed during the incident and also whether air website traffic controllers at the base to be in contact with the pilot and authorized the landing.

Landings in ~ wrong airports by commercial pilots, while unusual, room still much more common than many passengers might realize or airline would favor to acknowledge.

An linked Press search two years earlier of federal government safety data and also news reports since the early 1990s found at least 150 flights in which us commercial passenger and also cargo planes have actually either landing at the wrong airport or started to land and realized their mistake in time.

Of the 35 documented wrong landings, at least 23 emerged at airports with much shorter runways, producing potential safety issues.

In many cases, the pilots were cleared through controllers to fly based on what they might see rather than relying ~ above automation. Numerous incidents emerged at night, with pilots reporting they to be attracted by the runway lamp of the very first airport castle saw throughout descent. Part pilots said they disregarded navigation equipment that confirmed their plane slightly turn off course since the information didn’t complement what they were seeing through their windows – a runway right ahead.

On 12 January 2014, the pilots that a Southwest airlines Boeing 737-700 stopped their aircraft just brief of a ravine at the end of a short runway in Hollister, Missouri. They had actually meant to land ~ above a runway twice as long, at adjacent Branson.

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A couple of months earlier, one Atlas waiting Boeing 747 freighter landing at the small Jabara airplane in Wichita, Kansas, instead of McConnell air force base, around eight miles away. The runway is thought about 3,000ft (900 metres) less than right for the plane, among the largest in the world. That took around 10 hrs to revolve the airplane around and also ready it for takeoff again. A surrounding highway was shut under as a safety precaution.