A United Air Lines flight left New Orleans with 115 people aboard and immediately turned back to the airport. Within minutes the cockpit reported smoke and the passengers said the craft was shuddering. The landing was rocky. The cockpit had no electronics, and landed using a backup system. The flight left the runway on touchdown, stopping some 2,000 feet beyond the pavement with a blown tire. Everyone made it safely off the Airbus A-320. See a video below of an Airbus computer landing
On landing passengers were told to leave everything and “get out,” which they did, using emergency chutes.
Passengers reported an unusual amount of turbulence that never subsided.
“It didn’t feel right. The plane was waving about in the wind,” said passenger Peter Maroni, 23, of Queensland, Australia, who was sitting near the rear of the plane.
As the aircraft moved over Lake Pontchartrain, Maroni noticed the plane was no longer ascending. He could feel the engines pulling, but the plane seemed to go no higher. Maroni said the plane turned and began to descend.
A few injuries termed “minor,” were reported.
Lew Waters at right in a Left World left a link to the video below, showing an Airbus landing, controlled by a computer (sans pilot).
Auto-pilot Airbus Landing (video)