US Airways Flight Stuck On Tarmac For 7 Hours

USAToday says that a flight to Phoenix from JFK was stuck on the tarmac for 7 hours on Tuesday.

Flight 17 from John F. Kennedy International Airport was due to leave at 6 p.m. Tuesday, but didn’t actually take off until about 1 a.m., airline spokesman Phil Gee said.

Dozens of other aircraft were delayed because of a storm passing through the area, which closed the airport for about 90 minutes.

Gee said the plane pushed back from the gate at 6:30 p.m. ET and spent hours sitting on the tarmac so it wouldn’t lose its takeoff slot.

The plane finally went back to the gate to refuel, but then resumed its wait for a takeoff slot. Several passengers decided to get off the plane while it was being refueled.

You know you’re having a bad day when your airplane has to be refueled before it even takes off.

US Airways Flight Stuck on Tarmac for 7 Hours[USAToday]
(Photo:caseywest)

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  1. darkclawsofchaos says:

    airplane news is so over-reported that it has lost all meaning, it is as pointless as critizing Bush’s policies

    on the bright side, you know that the pilots didn’t take off without fuel like Quagmire did in that Family Guy episode where Peter acted like a redneck

  2. medief says:

    I had something to say about this, but forgot what it was. I’m busy fixing JFK’s congestion problem.

  3. m0unds says:

    Back in November, I had a flight that was supposed to leave Albuquerque @ 6:10 AM, and arrive in Phoenix an hour later..We didn’t leave until 2PM. 6 hours of that time was spent sitting in the aircraft waiting for a repair person to be flown in from Phoenix because the brakes were stuck. The remaining time leading up to departure was spent standing in line trying to get connecting flights booked to get everyone to their final destinations. The first class passengers of course had already been rebooked by the airline so they departed immediately after the aircraft returned to the gate. Instead of getting to my office in CA at 10am, I got there at 8:30PM. I love flight delays.

  4. GenXCub says:

    @darkclawsofchaos: I disagree. This is a consumer issue, and an issue that has been in the forefront for the last couple of years. In this era of constant reporting, you need to report, report again, and report even more to get your point out. Airlines, the FAA, and Airport regulations won’t change if there’s no public outcry about the problems. Mag-Lev trains anyone?

  5. liquisoft says:

    I wonder why they leave the engines running if they’re not moving. Don’t those rules about “how to save gas” apply to planes just as much as they do cars?

    Specifically the one about turning the engine off if you’re going to be sitting still for a while.

    The one about letting yourself coast until you come to a stop is particularly fun to think about in relation to planes.

  6. Anonymous says:

    thats why i try to get a good buz on before i fly (and try to hide how good the buzz is to get on the flight.) lol. i probably would have woke up thinking we were there! lol.

  7. hypnotik_jello says:

    @liquisoft: I’m just guessing stuff like a/c, lights (non emergency), etc are powered by the turbine generator. Just guessin’

  8. LiC says:

    @liquisoft: I think they need to keep the engine running to keep the climate controls and electric devices like a movie working. Probably so they plane can move too.

    It is insane that that much FUEL was wasted. It is really expensive, the airline must have lost money on that flight.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I am an aerospace engineer, so I can answer this one. They don’t turn off the engines because they can’t. Most jet engines can not start themselves. They require ground power to do that. Long flights require that the APU (auxillary power unit: the little engine in the back of the plane that powers the plane systems when the engines are not up to speed) be fully operational so that it can restart the engines in an emergency. Incidently, when they say that the AC is off because the engines are idling on the tarmac and there is nothing they can do about it? They are lying. The APU will power the AC, but most carriers will not turn it on to save fuel.

  10. STrRedWolf says:

    Uh… yeah. If a plane has to refuel on the tarmac, it’s terminally late. I’d get off and get another flight… or if it’s to DC, grab my luggage, grab a taxi, and haul it over to Amtrak.

    … and avoid New York in the future. Extensive delays the norm? YUK!

  11. stevemis says:

    Pilots are only allowed a certain number of “flight hours” over a period of time. If the FAA included “tarmac wait time” in this number, games like these would stop overnight.

  12. darkclawsofchaos says:

    @GenXCub:

    what you say will come true only if it pisses off enough Republicans, if it doesn’t the airline lobbyists just keep paying to keep things the way they are

  13. RottNDude says:

    This is why you bring ipecac syrup on the plane and start swigging after the first hour. One puking passenger in a hot, stuffy plane leads to EVERY passenger puking their guts out. Let’s see them try to keep passengers on a puke-filled plane.

    If they did, I’d pop the door and slide down to the tarmac. Arrest me, I’ll sue the airline for unlawful detainment.

  14. jamar0303 says:

    @STrRedWolf: Why not head out to Amtrak in the first place? I only see benefits compared to air travel (no electronics restrictioons, using your phone and stuff, etc).

  15. CurbRunner says:

    @darkclawsofchaos:

    If you had been held hostage in a plane on the tarmac for several hours, I’d bet you would pace some of your own “meaning” to the situation.

  16. CurbRunner says:

    @RottNDude:

    ” Let’s see them try to keep passengers on a puke-filled plane.
    If they did, I’d pop the door and slide down to the tarmac. Arrest me, I’ll sue the airline for unlawful detainment.”

    They’ve kept sick, hungry and thirsty passengers in this condition many times. New Homeland Security laws can keep you from suing them also.

  17. shiznannigan says:

    @liquisoft & Jeffbrock:

    The way I understand it is that turbine engines take quite some time to start and get up to operating speed… up to a few minutes. Additionally, certain checks/procedures must be done every time they are started. This would make for an incredibly slow-moving line of aircrafts waiting to take off.

    Aircraft engines don’t require ground power to start. However, most turbine engines use hydraulic starters, and hydraulic power is provided by the APU (Auxillary Power Unit). The APU must be started before the main engines.

    That’s how it is for helicopters, anyways. But I think jets are the same in this case.