posted on Sep, 29 2003 @ 01:37 PM
Well, the first thing I knew was at about 6 in the morning, about an hour away from Miami.
The captain announced "Ladies and gentlemen, when we approach the runway, you will see quite a few emergency vehicles. Do not panic. Heathrow called
us last night to say that we had left a wheel and part of the landing gear on the runway. This should not be a problem as the aircraft is designed so
that losing a wheel or two is not a problem".
My brain picked out the phrase "Do not panic". This is not what you want to hear from a pilot!
As we approached the runway, I could see the emergency vehicles (at least 10) lined up near the runway. My mind was picturing the plane digging a huge
trench in the runway.
We landed very delicately, definitely favoring the intact side of the plane.
In the end, it turned out that we had had a tire blowout which had knocked something else off. A modern 747 has quite a few wheels on each landing
gear, so we were fine.
I just wish he hadn't woken us up to give us an hour to worry about our impending doom!