How Does A Plane Crash Into A Light Pole?

Everyone who drives a car eventually comes into close encounter with a light pole. Backing up, trying to parallel park, hey, it happens to all of us. And that's totally OK. What's NOT OK is if you're a pilot and you crash your freaking plane into a light pole. How does that even happen?

The unfortunate example of bad plane driving happened on Southwest Flight 792 from LAX to Denver International Airport, as the Boeing 737 was taxiing to its gate. No one was hurt in the freak accident, and the airport continued swimmingly sans light pole. But who is this pilot? He's the anti-Sully Sullenberger! He's the pilot equivalent of the guy in the Hummer who thinks he can fit inside a compact spot. He's the flying man big rig driver who squeezes himself into narrow alleys. Know your blind spots!

This got me wondering though. I know most pilots get tested while flying a plane in the air, but what about driving a plane on the ground? How thorough are those tests? Those are big honking vehicles with gnarly wing spans, I'd like to see them practice their arm signals and navigate through cones in their pilot driving test. [Hilarynh Instagram via KWGN via Consumerist]


Comments

    "Everyone who drives a car eventually comes into close encounter with a light pole. Backing up, trying to parallel park, hey, it happens to all of us. And that’s totally OK. What’s NOT OK is if you’re a pilot and you crash your freaking plane into a light pole. How does that even happen?"

    Err.. logically.. the same way. It's an accident.

    The way you've written this article it's like the guy committed a criminal act on purpose.. like drink driving or something.

      +1 agreed.

      Tired of journalism being so biased. Once upon a time they would leave these comment boxes here for people to say things like that.

      It was an accident - like you said, no-one was hurt... soooo? get over it.

    Better question! What's a light pole doing so close to an aeroplane taxiway??
    Also where was the taxiing attendant?

      Exactly. This incident is more likely an error on the part of the ground crew than the pilot.

    “Everyone who drives a car eventually comes into close encounter with a light pole." No not everyone, only if you are uncoordinated and/or not concentrating which if the complete opposite of what you should be when driving any vehicle.

    See, pilots are supposed to follow a series of lines on the ground (similar to drivers on the road, (though these are often absent in car parks)... the line markings are supposed to allow room for the plane to get through, maybe not always.....
    And the lines may not go everywhere a plane needs to go.

    I hit Light poles all the time in my airplanes and helicopters in battlefield 3... :P

      +1

      Almost inevitable if you're chasing foot targets.

        double + 1 LOL!

    I am not sure where the plane is, but it is either not on a taxiway, or the plane is so far to the left of the centerline of the taxiway to allow this to happen (hence not seeing the edge of the taxiway).

    Taxiways are marked by either Yellow Cones on the ground in the case of non-paved aprons, or on paved aprons there are Double Yellow Lines that are used to mark the side of the taxiway. There is also a Yellow Centerline that to guide the pilot to track on the centerline.

    Pilots are tested on taxiing, this test takes part of the overall test to get your licence, and you can be failed for not being able to taxi properly.

    Having said that, accidents do happen, who knows how this happened.

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