Wednesday, April 20
Does Recent Trouble On The Ground Point To Danger In The Skies?
Tens of thousands of flights take off every single day in the United States. Nearly every single one of them lands safely, without incident. If it seems like a Herculean feet, that’s because it is. And it is one that relies heavily on a complex—and notoriously stress-inducing—air traffic control system that is presently under intense scrutiny. At least a half-dozen controllers have been reported nodding off in recent weeks. Then, a plane carrying first Lady Michelle Obama had to abort its landing for flying too close to another aircraft. So what is going on in the control towers at our airports these days? Are we seeing the first cracks in a system stretched to the breaking point? And more importantly, are these incidents a sign that flying the friendly skies is becoming more dangerous? Christine Negroni joins us to shed some light on this. She is the author of the book Deadly Departure: Why the Experts Failed to Prevent the TWA Flight 800 Disaster and she now covers aviation for the New York Times and on her blog, Flying Lessons.