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NEWS: Civilian Airliner "accidentally" Lands at Military Base

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posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 12:25 AM
It is a strange time indeed that we live in when a civilian airliner with passengers on board suddenly lands on a military airstrip. What could possibly have triggered an event like the following

Link to story

June 20 - The FAA is investigating after a Northwest Airlines flight headed to Rapid City, South Dakota landed not at the airport but at a military base. NewsCenter's Ryan Kath filed this report.

Landing in the wrong place was just the beginning of a very experience for the one hundred and seventeen passengers aboard the Northwest flight.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

In this modern day when air traffic controllers are able to follow an airliners every movement certainly someone could have warned the pilot hat he was approaching the wrong field long before he got into an unabortable landing pattern. What is in Ellsworth that is worth risking a plane and its crew and passengers to get at? I think there is more here than is readily apparent. I invite your thoughts and comments.

[edit on 22-6-2004 by Zion Mainframe]

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 01:28 AM
It is not strange that they made all the passengers close their windows considering that this base is the home of the Air Force 28th bomb wing that provides strategic electronic reconnaissance information to the President, Secretary of Defense , Department of Defense leaders, and theater commanders. Who knows what kind of new stealth aircraft they may have. It is located near the Black Hills where there have been UFO reports.

There was also UFO activity at Ellsworth in 1953

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 01:40 AM
Sounds like they may have been delivering somthing for the base.You never know they may have had something in the cargo bay that was not ment to be there or they may have used it to ship somthing they didint want people to see or know it was coming who would think of a Northwest Airlines flight shipping somthing hush hush.

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 01:43 AM
radio navigation aides make landing at the wrong place on accident impossible. Really... if the pilot is capable of actually landing the plane he's capable of keeping track of his navigational cues.

There is surely more to this story.

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 01:47 AM
The more I think about this the more I find it highly unlikely that a commercial airliner would have landed at the wrong airport. Years ago my step-dad was a bone head and landed his 4 seater at a closed airport in central Florida. So many of the airports the little planes fly to are without ATC. With all their computerized navigation there has to be basically no chance this was an error. All the frequencies related to the airport that get loaded into their radio systems and approach systems make this impossible. And certainly that close I would expect air traffic control to advise them they are off course. Certainly their instruments should have given them all kinds of warning that they were going to miss the runway.

Any pilots here? Correct me if i'm wrong. My only flying experience comes from MS Flight Sim. This just doesn't add up.

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 07:23 AM
First post, but I've been reading a while and I couldn't resist a reply to this one :-)

about 7-8 years ago I was a flight paramedic that flew out of KCRP (corpus christi international airport, in south texas) there was an incident where a commercial airline accidently landed at the wrong it is not an impossibility for this to happen, and this is a realativly busey airport with both commerical and military traffic (from a navy flight training base) so they are pretty good about watching traffic there.

BUT....the closed airport that they landed at, which the navy uses to do touch and goes on, is on the approach patch to CRP and the runway is the same (or nearly same) on a final approach it can appear to be the right airport (still a big fu-pa, and if they poor crew still have jobs and sure they will never hear the end of it, lol) as it turned out the runway was to short for the plane to take off again and they had to shuttle the entire flight to the right airport...hahaha, we had a pretty good laugh about it at the time....and i'm sure this sort of thing has happend in the past...

SO.... I think before too many conclusions are made one should at least look at the settings of these two airports (which they might not even be close to each other) would also have to rule out any kind of flight emergency that might have occured to (even something like a malfunctioning indicator light...bla bla bla...)

OF COURSE....this is a very strange story indeed and I hope that we find out more about what really took place


posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 12:41 PM
With all the itchy trigger fingers after 9/11 im surprised it wasnt blown out of the sky by some hick f16 jock.

There is more to this than meets the eye.

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 04:57 PM

There is more to this than meets the eye.

SHHHHH!...of course there is...but how do you think the passengers would feel if it got out that the heads on the flight were out of order and they found out the pilot needed a "potty break"...geeez...some privacey..please...

of course it just couldn't have been some kind of plain old fashioned mistake, now could it?...either on the part of the pilot or even the air traffic control...and IF there is more to it...don't ever expect to hear that it was anything more than human error...because no body will be talking...


posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 06:28 PM

IF there is more to it...don't ever expect to hear that it was anything more than human error...because no body will be talking...


Actually Northwest is coming out and saying that it was not pilot error that this plane landed where it did. They are not releasing the reason for the erroneous landing but they are denying that pilot error had anything to do with it.

posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 09:54 PM
Perhaps this was some kind of military exercise to see if they could divert a plane at random to a government controlled facilty as part of a terrorist readiness exercise. the question then would be, why divert to ellsworth where there is sensative equipment and technololgy?

posted on Jun, 22 2004 @ 12:26 AM
Just think for a moment..... you're sitting at a conference table in a meeting room with a think tank of people trying to generate an avenue for confirmation of a known terrorist group to start chattering at this so called blunder. Really now! Would we do such a thing to get National attention on such a subject? Yes we would and I'm sure they had a hand full of reasons to feed the media, just to make it a little more juicey. Like, all the passengers had to pull down their window shades so they didn't see anything. Right !!! All show and the media ate it up...... I'm surprised that they didn't have people interviewing the passengers as they were getting off the plane when they finally landed at the right airport. I agree with the idea that there is more to this than meets the eye...... Especially since it involved a military airfield. It's hard to have a train stop at the wrong station, not much news there, but then again, we already played that card just a few weeks ago to get more money out of Congress. Remember, when the Transit Authority was going to start checking bags and spot checking passengers because of the bombing in Spain. They got that to the news fast enough. Funny, how all this falls into place. Just like a well planned story.

posted on Jun, 22 2004 @ 12:59 AM
Has anyone seen a thorough interview with any passengers from the jet? Just curious. I'd like to know what was said to them. Besides the obvious part about landing at the wrong airport.

posted on Jun, 22 2004 @ 10:43 PM
The story is just building speed. Flying low for now until the government wants the media to take the ball and run with it. I give them 72 hours and the media will bring it back to the headlines. They always start it out like: "Perhaps you might recall the aircraft that landed at the wrong airfield several days ago, well the military has investigated the .........." That's when it will have sparked the necessary traffic in the overseas cells that will send messages back to the states to be traced by our "BIG BROTHER". I haven't seen any interviews hit national news yet...... Again, has anyone else?

posted on Jun, 23 2004 @ 02:12 AM
I'm not sure I get the hype about this. I recall several incidents in the past 10 years or so where commercial pilots accidentally (read: accidentally) landed at a military strip. when you consider the amount of military strips in the world, and the sheer number of commercial flights, its bound to happen every now and then. particularly at remote bases where the ATC commander might not be used to a pilot making such an error to begin with.

-koji K.

posted on Jun, 23 2004 @ 05:50 AM
The following only makes this seem more strange to me ...

Air Force Lt. Christine Millette said the pilots reported that they were in contact with Rapid City controllers on their approach when they descended into a cloud. When the plane came out of the cloud, the first runway the pilots saw was the one at Ellsworth.

Millette said the two runways are about 7 miles (11 kilometers) apart and parallel to one another.

posted on Jun, 23 2004 @ 06:38 AM
not to be a wet blanket, but i really don't see what all the fuss is about here...

this happens all the time. on mil bases and normal strips. airlines and the faa don't comment about it because it makes the whole industry look bad. for one explanation of how this stuff happens, check out:

for recent examples of it actually happening: s/7716354.htm?template=contentModules/printstory.jsp

posted on Jun, 23 2004 @ 08:31 AM
Hmm maybe it was just a simple mistake ...still smells slightly funny tho...

Landing prompts changes at base

ELLSWORTH AFB — Following Saturday's landing of a commercial flight at Ellsworth Air Force Base instead of Rapid City Regional Airport, most aircraft headed for the civilian air field will be told there is a military landing field nearby.

"We've always done this for aircraft approaching using a visual procedure; we never thought it was necessary for pilots using their instruments to land by. This really opened our eyes," Tech. Sgt. Mark Coleman said. Coleman is the chief controller for radar approach at Ellsworth.

[edit on 23-6-2004 by OLMGITNHFTWS]

posted on Jun, 25 2004 @ 11:15 AM
I was in the Air Force....and even had a RED government passport (the kind where the government says in the passport, if you hinder the mission of this person, you will be met with extreme sanctions and stuff that means in are creating an act of war....)

It is common practice to take a jetliner such as a commercial one...and when you fly military people to sensitive do two do NOT fly in a military jet...and you do NOT travel in uniform, and Duffel bags NOT authorized.

perhaps there was an assignment they needed to complete and fly some military personnel to a sensitive somewhere in Saudi Arabia.

Commercial flights out of Maguire AFB are commonplace for people going overseas.

posted on Jun, 25 2004 @ 11:45 AM

Originally posted by OLMGITNHFTWS
"We've always done this for aircraft approaching using a visual procedure; we never thought it was necessary for pilots using their instruments to land by. This really opened our eyes," Tech. Sgt. Mark Coleman said. Coleman is the chief controller for radar approach at Ellsworth.[edit on 23-6-2004 by OLMGITNHFTWS]

If he was on instruments, as all commercial carriers are then he would have had to have plugged in the wrong airport code on his flight plan in order for his instruments to indicate he was on track. Aren't there any checks and balances against that?

That alone is fishy.

posted on Jun, 25 2004 @ 11:54 AM
Here is a map from Mappoint that shows the two airfields. I drew the runway in for Ellsworth since Mappoint doesn't show it. I approximated its position given that the area I used was devoid of roads or anything else. Additionally there is a small spit of land in the NW corner of the base that looks like the ILS runup for the runaway.

Here's the map. As you can see the runways are roughly at the same heading but about 10 miles apart. Again, you would have had to enter the wrong GPS coordinates for the airport to navigate to it.

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