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It’s a go around, due to an unstabilized approach, and a very normal (and encouraged) maneuver. Would you rather them force the airplane onto the ground? The answer is no. The pilot monitoring will call the go around if he sees airspeed, vertical speed, or aircraft attitude exceeds certain parameters. The pilot flying can call and execute the maneuver anytime he wants. It’s erring on the side of caution, and what good pilots do. It’s the guys that won’t go around (usually driven by ego) that you have to worry about.





Honestly, I cringe when I read threads like this because of the sheer ignorance involved. Every situation in the OP is just ignorance. There’s nothing wrong with being ignorant, but you have to know that you just don’t know. I don’t go to places trying to tell people how to do their job, and people have to understand that they just don’t know what’s happening in the ****pit of an airplane. The training we go through is very intense and thorough.

I had to shut an engine down and perform a single engine landing just a few months ago. It’s a non event because of our training. Things like missed approach procedures, go arounds, rejected takeoffs are all basic, normal procedures. It doesn’t mean the flight crew messes up, it doesn’t mean that anything is wrong, and it’s dang sure not dangerous. I did the corporate/charter thing for a while and now fly for a major. Sit back, relax, and let the cabin crew take care of you. Everything is going to be okay.
Not bashing pilots, airlines, flight attendants or even TSA. It is what it is. Just saying the only time I was a little uncomfortable was when we flew in sideways and had to power back up and try again. I explained this very thing to several frightened folks around me who didn't understand why we were headed back out into the Atlantic. I feel confident it is normal procedure, as skidding off a runway into surround structures is most likely NOT SOP. My brain usually overrules my gut, but in this instance the gut won out and I had "feelings". No harm intended.
 

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Another common misconception about flying. What is an "air pocket"? A place in the sky where there is no air causing the plane to lose lift and drop?
The atmosphere is just like a flowing river. And just like rocks, logs and other objects in the river can cause turbulence in the water, mountains, storms and jet streams can cause turbulence in the air. So the plane you were in simply flew through some turbulent air. Passengers will swear that the airplane dropped 1000's of feet when the altitude changed 50 feet.
LOL....No, I don't think anyone is stupid enough to believe there are pockets where air doesn't exist. Air pocket is just one of those generic terms for any area where there is a sudden change in atmosphere which can disrupt the airflow over the wing and change its lift characteristics . Areas of upflow/downflow as in micro bursts, air rotation, temperature inversions....lots of things that can cause sudden turbulence. Even a 10 foot sudden drop would be enough to momentarily pin objects to the ceiling and scare the daylights out everyone on a plane.
 

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Follow a 747 too closely into SFO. You’ll see some pretty dramatic sudden decreases in altitude. I’m from the naval aviation community so nothing really surprises me.... that commercial flight definitely got my attention though.
 

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Here's a surprisingly accurate look into one day in the life of a pilot.
That was pretty funny, and I can see how accurate it probably is.

With you and @awhtx being commercial pilots, maybe you could answer a question. I fly quite a bit for work too, and realize how safe it is. Around 2003-2004, me and two of my coworkers were on a comercial flight that had to make an emergency landing. This was before social media was out of control, so it didn't get reported, and I was always curious what happened with the plane (nothing visible, loud noises, etc). I am pretty positive it was a flight from CLT to DFW, and our emergency landing was in Nashville. This was the real deal with oxygen masks deploying, dropping altitude faster than I've ever done in a plane, plus what appeared to be the entire airport fire crew lining the runway as we landed.

I looked into it a little at the time, but the Internet wasn't what it is now, and I didn't find anything. A couple years ago I was throwing away some old financial stuff, and out of total dumb luck, looked down at a transaction from the Nashville airport from that day. I realize the tail number would probably answer this question, but now that there is so much more information available online, would the date of that transaction in the Nashville airport help to figure out what happened to the plane?
 

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Do you man the crew didn't explain anything, even after the plane was on the ground? That's dereliction of duty in my book. It sounds like a problem with the pressurization if the oxygen masks dropped down. Did the flight attendants tell you to put them on or did they say nothing either?
 

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Do you man the crew didn't explain anything, even after the plane was on the ground? That's dereliction of duty in my book. It sounds like a problem with the pressurization if the oxygen masks dropped down. Did the flight attendants tell you to put them on or did they say nothing either?
The crew definitely explained the use of the oxygen masks as they were deploying, and that we had to make an emergency landing. Prior to this happening it became noticeably odd because the stewardesses were rapidly opening and closing overhead baggage compartments like they were looking for something, then the emergency landing procedure started, which was announced from the ****pit. After landing though, no, there was no announcement as to why the emergency landing occurred. Unfortunately I couldn’t/didn’t spend time trying to ask because most people around me were still freaked out and wanting off the plane ASAP. I’ve always been curious of what caused that though.
 

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That’s crazy. The crew should brief you on what the emergency was after landing. The passengers should never be left in the dark on what happened. I agree that it sounds like some sort of pressurization issue.

the emergency crews on standby at the runway when you land, is standard practice for declaring and emergency. To be clear, declaring doesn’t mean you’re in any immediate danger, and instead it just gives the airplane ATC priority and protects the pilots for what would normally be “deviations.” I declared when I had to shut an engine down a few months ago, but the flight was in no real danger. Just standard procedure.
 

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Thanks @sportsroof69 & @awhtx for the info. A pressurization issue makes sense, and it was definitely a unique experience. The joke my two co-workers & I have had since is, statistically speaking, we now have to be the safest people around to fly with. I still wish they would have told us what happened to cause it though.

Edit: I had to dig up my credit card statement just out of curiosity, and the transaction date on it was 5/18/2004.
 
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