27th July 2017, Turkey – a passenger aeroplane safely took-off to reach Ercan in Northern Cyprus, but just 10 minutes later it felt into a powerful storm and giant hailstones, as big as chicken eggs. Stunning images show the severe damages reported, but despite that, Captain Alexander Akopov, didn’t lose the control and managed to land ‘blind’ at Ataturk Airport, in Istanbul (Turkey), saving 127 passengers.
The locator did not show the weather disaster, the captain said, and this is what happened eventually: the hurricane and hail severely damaged the Atlasglobal Airbus A320, shattering the cockpit’s windows, the front part (nose) of the nacelle and disabling the auto-pilot.
Hail is common in most parts of the world and is a variety of differently shaped ice balls or lumps. Hailstones can be measured anything from five millimetres and two hundred millimetres and, in some instances, they can be very dangerous. They can cause a lot of damage especially to cars and vehicles, buildings, crops, livestock animals and aircrafts. And this is just what happened to the Turkish aeroplane five days ago.
In a tough and dangerous situation, with no visibility and ‘surrounded by an angry mother nature’, the Ukrainian hero pilot, touched down safely and rescued the panicking passengers. Despite the terrible weather conditions over Istanbul, lasted 20 minutes, 121 passengers and six crew members are still alive, thanks to his 30 years of flying experience, skills and self control.
The pilot demonstrated to fight well against the sometimes implacable and angry mother nature and picked up the Ukrainian Order For Courage in his home country, after the Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko congratulated upon his heroics.
Do you feel safe when you travel by plane? Do you trust the pilot and cabin crew? This incident is a clear demonstration that aeroplanes can be much safer than your bike, even in tough situations and bad weather conditions.