747 Manages to Get Unstuck, Take Off

After tug manages to turn it around
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 21, 2013 11:52 AM CST
Updated Nov 21, 2013 2:20 PM CST
A Boeing 747 LCF Dreamlifter sits on the runway after accidentally landing at Jabara airport in Wichita, Kansas Wednesday night Nov. 20, 2013 thinking it was landing at McConnell Air Force Base.   (AP Photo/Wichita Eagle, Jaime)
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(Newser) – A big plane got into a bigger snag last night when it mistakenly landed at a tiny Kansas airport, only to find the space too tight to turn around in. The Atlas Air Dreamlifter was scheduled to land at McConnell Air Force Base but instead touched down at Jabara Airport—which boasts a runway just 100 feet wide—eight miles away. Though given clearance from McConnell, the apparently confused, two-person crew was heard saying, "Ahh, yes sir, we just landed at the other airport," KWCH reports, while NBC News took away this quote: "Let me ask you this, how many airports...are there?"

Though there were reports that a tug sent to tow the 747 into place had broken down (its max speed was just 13mph), KAKE reports that 10 hours later, the cargo plane was successfully turned; it did indeed manage to take off around 1pm, and landed at McConnell a few minutes later. KAKE earlier reported a new crew would be aboard, and noted the original crew would likely face some questions. AP has this tidbit to that end: At one point, a controller reads to the pilot the coordinates where he sees the plane on radar. When the pilot reads the coordinates back, he mixes up "east" and "west." "Sorry about that, couldn't read my handwriting," the pilot says. A few minutes later, he mixed up north and south. (Read more airport stories.)

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