reply to post by may_be_true
Thanks for an interesting (if long) observation, may_be_true...
I am not a nephew, child or grandchild of a pilot. I AM a retired airline pilot, as is Capt John Lear.
It is difficult to explain all of the complexities, in a post...and I daresay Capt Lear has a certain opinion that differs from some who opine here.
That is good for the discussion, I certainly lay no claim to knowing the absolute truth. I just have experience in the B757/767 and can therefore
give a perspective to what I can imagine might have happened, given the premise of a co-ordinated hijacking that was planned and implemented on
The four flights were chosen, I would assume, because they a) had nearly identical departure times, b) were trans-con flights, hence lots of fuel and
c) it was off-season, that is, the 'shoulder' period as airlines call it, after Summer vacation but before any major US holiday. Pax loads are
UA93, far from being a 'red-herring', was, in hindsight, a fortunate combination of factors. Newark is a particularly busy, some might call it the
'ugly step-child' airport of the three in the NYC area, prone to extensive delays, sinced JFK and LGA get priority treatment, IMO. Hence, UA93
experienced an extensive delay from push-back to lift-off. What is more, there were only FOUR hijackers on UA93, as opposed to FIVE on the other
three airplanes. The delay was instrumental in the scenario, since media reports had already covered the WTC attacks, and once UA93 was taken over,
and descended by the hijacker to a low altitude on its way to target (DC) the passenger's cell phones could get signals. AND, they had the AirPhone
installed in the seat backs as well....
I am told the VOR on UA93 was tuned to DCA...that's the VOR at National Airport. That's enough guidance info for a reasonably educated pilot to
steer the airplane, and then take over visually once n the vicinity. It was a beautifully clear day...I was at home that morning, in Arlington, VA.
I felt the tremor shake my house when the Pentagon's upper floors collapsed, sometime after AA77 impacted. My house shook at just after 10:00AM.
(Maybe 10:08, not sure...you can look it up...)
OK, enough for now, thanks for reading.