Aviation News, Headlines & Alerts
Category: <span>Continental</span>

Aviation Safety Irony Emergency Landing

At 3:35 p.m. Continental Airlines Flight 458 A320 en route from Houston to Washington diverted to New Orleans on Tuesday at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport where the pilots made a safe emergency landing with Ron Paul aboard. Paul Lampson, Ted Poe, John Carter, Solomon P. Ortiz, Ciro Rodriguez, and Henry Cuellar were also aboard.

Ironically, the Texas congressmen were trying to get back to Washington to vote on an aviation safety bill.

There were 120 aboard. An alternative flight was provided.

Continental Settlement Multiple Causes

In the 2008 Continental Airline crash at Denver International Airport, although the crash was blamed on pilot error, pilots did not have all the facts. How could the pilots do anything but fail to make proper rudder adjustments when air traffic controllers didn’t bother to tell the pilots about a forty-knot crosswind.

The settlement will be “several million dollars.”

Some passengers were not injured, but they all have to remember that after they jumped from the wreckage, it burst into flames.

Turbulence Sends Flight to Lake Charles with Injured Flight Crew

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Alevik

What: United Airlines Boeing 737-700 en route from Houston to New York
Where: Lake Charles Regional Airport
When: June 12, 2012 9 pm
Who: 88 passengers 3 injured
Why: While flight attendants were about to serve drinks when the flight encountered severe turbulence that slammed them into the ceiling of the plane, then the floor.

Three members of the flight crew were injured during the flight, one of them seriously.

Pilots diverted to Lake Charles Regional Airport where the injured were taken to Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.

In George’s Point of View

They really have to come up with science that sees all upcoming turbulence, so the plane can avoid it before something really bad happens.

Skywest/United Airlines/Continental Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Texas

What: SkyWest en route from Houston to Toronto
Where: East Texas Regional Airport in Gregg County
When: March 6, 2012, 10:02 PM,
Who: 58 passengers, 2 pilots, 2 flight attendants
Why: While en route, a small fire in a cockpit printer sent the smell of smoke though the flight deck. The fire was reported to ATC and the plane made an emergency landing at East Texas Regional Airport in Gregg County.

The 58 passengers disembarked without emergency, and were bussed to Dallas where another plane was scheduled to take them the last leg of their journey.

AP reported this as a United Express jet. SkyWest operates the flight as a codeshare with United Airlines and Continental.

Fake Cigarette Leads to On Board Assault

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Jens Breuer

What: United Boeing 737-800 en route from Portland to Houston
Where: Portland
When: Feb 21st 2012
Who: 1 unruly passenger
Why: Twenty minutes after departing, the flight was back in Portland dropping off Yazeed Mohammed Abunayyan, after he had taken a swing at a flight attendant, and hit several passengers prior to being subdued and handcuffed. The Saudi Arabian passenger was yelling profanities, and chanting about Osama bin Laden and his hatred of women.

A relative says Abunayyan suffers from schizophrenia. The cousin, Fahad Alsubaie who was accompanying Yazeed said he was escorted off the plane too, and that the disruption began after a flight attendant confronted the two for sitting together.

Last Sunday Abunayyan led police on a slow-speed chase in the Southern Oregon town Sunday, ramming two police cars and nearly hitting a pedestrian, charged with drunken driving and assaulting an officer and was released on bail Monday. The cousin was there too, trying to stop the car by taking the keys.
Abunayyan said that the “other person inside me” was driving.

Continental bans the use of electronic, simulated smoking materials

Bird Strike over Panama

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Bill Shull

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737-900 en route from Panama City (Panama) to Newark,NJ
Where: Panama City
When: November 18, 2011
Who: 176 aboard
Why: After takeoff, while climbing out of Panama City, the Continental flight suffered a bird strike. After ingesting the bird, the left engine surged, and caught on fire. Pilots shut down the engine, and returned to Tocumen Airport where they made a safe landing.

Continental Emergency Landing

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 777-200 en route from Tel Aviv to Newark,NJ
Where: Tel Aviv
When: Nov 9th 2011
Who: 280 aboard
Why: When smoke was reported as coming from the baggage compartment, the pilots returned to Ben-Gurion International Airport and made a safe landing.

45 ambulances and 17 mobile units were on the scene of the emergency landing.

The origin of the smoke turned out to be an oven in the aft galley.

The Guam Question: What Happened on Flight 001?

United/Continental flights to Guam have been laden with issues. Landing gear problems and other issues abound; and it happened again on Sunday, the fifth time in a month.

This was aother emergency landing, although officially they are saying there was no incident. There was a nose gear problem reported, however; and the safe landing was made in spite of it.

Airport rescue services were on hand when the flight landed, prepared to handle the Landing gear malfunction, which turned out to be a landing gear indicator malfunction.

Another United/Continental Emergency over Guam International Airport

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Yunjin Lee – Korea Aero Photo

What: United/Continental 767-400 en route from Honolulu to Guam
Where: Guam International Airport
When: Oct 2, 2011
Who: 247 passengers
Why: Would you believe it? On approach to Guam (again) there was a problem with a United/Continental flight.(We’ve reported three or four of them in the past couple of weeks.) This approach to Guam International Airport was aborted because the plane indicated a problem with the landing gear. Pilots circled, as they dealt with the issue. A flyby resolved the question of if the landing gear was down (it was visibly engaged);

The pilots were able to land safely, fortunately with an indicator malfunction rather than a gear malfunction.

3 Minute Flight, after Smokey Lav

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Dariusz Nowacki

What: Chautauqua Airlines /Continental Airlines/Embraer ERJ-145 en route from Hartford to Cleveland
Where: Hartford
When: Sep 26 2011
Who: 49 passengers and 3 crew
Why: After taking off from Hartford, smoke was observed in the bathroom.
Pilots were in the air from 9:42 am to 9:45 am.

The pilots made a safe landing, with emergency services on standby. Passengers evacuated without injury on to the runway, and were bussed to the terminal. The location of the plane did cause some airport disruption and delay.

Guam Route Emergencies Reflecting Vigilance or Roulette?

After four emergency landings in Guam in the past couple of weeks, Continental/United made a statement to the press.

Actually, four emergency landings…that’s not that unusual, is it? Of course, they were all at the same airport, with the same airline. I’ve written here recently about shabby looking, poorly maintained commercial airlines. As frequently as I fly, I really do not want to worry about whether or not a plane is capable of staying in the air. I don’t want to worry about a crew with a crippling pecking order, or pilots who don’t know how to fly. I really don’t want to worry about a broken plane.

I am always pointing out the need for maintenance to keep a plane in peak running order. Maintenance is important; and also, the pilots tell me that it is crucial to keep an eye on safety directives, and concurrent events which may reveal crucial matters affecting entire fleets, such as operating parts nearing the end of their lifespan, faulty parts, etc…

So someone should maybe look closely at those flights, and see if there is some factor that applies. Better to have prevention now, beforehand, than have a disaster happen, and lawyers looking into it after it is too late. Have these Guam flights been problematic in the past? Why are there problems now?I might ask how necessary are those flights?

About those 4 landings, Koji Nagata Director of Corporate Communications said that:

“We treat any issue aboard our aircraft seriously and our pilots will not hesitate to declare an emergency, when the situation warrants, in ensuring landing priority and returning our passengers and crew safely to the ground as quickly as possible. Typically a declaration of an emergency is precautionary in nature, as was true with both cases in question, and the situations were effectively managed without incident.”

Sure it would be great to never have emergencies. However. The time to handle an emergency IS BEFORE it turns tragic. Being able to handle emergencies is one safety skill at the top of the list of pilot skills, and one that can not be separated from the other skill that is becoming alarming among pilots (pilots who are losing the ability to fly due to automation.)

Sometimes factors are not clear. For example, it is true that in some recent tragic situations like the RusAir jet crash I talked about yesterday, there was a problem in the cockpit that prevented the crew from coping with the emergency. Bad flying? Primitive Airport? Insubordinate navigator and Inexperienced pilot? But it all came down to one conclusion: together or not, at that date and time, they were unable to cope with their emergency-bad weather, foggy landing, a plane that is a flying behemoth landing in a primitive airport, and they took down a whole plane full of people with them.

And as for the four emergency landings Continental/United experienced recently:
-the air speed indicator (PITOT tubes? like in AF447),
– -two landing gear situations
-and in the Guam flight CO-117, altitude equipment failure (another tube?)

The landing gear situations could reflect bad tires, hydraulics, landing at too fast, or even runway conditions; altitude and airspeed problems could be anything on the system, from the tubes to the electronics. Only detailed examination will reveal if there is some common cause

The planes landed safely. An emergency landing, a precautionary landing (whatever they want to call it), they handled the emergencies proactively, and landed safely. It is a whole lot better than the alternative.

Continental Overactive Heater

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 757-200 en route from Newark,NJ to London
Where: Newark
When: Sep 19th 2011
Why: While en route, a cabin sidewall overheated. The crew shut down the local electricity but not before a passenger was burned by the heater. The passenger was treated for minor injuries.

The incident occurred over Charlottetown in Canada. The flight crew returned to Newark and made a safe landing. A replacement Boeing completed the flight fourteen hours later.

So, now I wonder why back in Newark, maintenance deactivated the heater instead of repairing the problem. If it was there in the first place to counter a cold spot, did it not need to be repaired? I am hoping this was just deferred until the plane reached the appropriate hub.

Emergency Landing in Jackson

What: Continental/Expressjet Embraer ERJ-145 en route from Knoxville to Houston
Where: Jackson, Mississippi
When: Sept 14 2011
Who: 52 passengers on board
Why: After takeoff, there was a popping noise in the cabin, and smoke ensued.

The pilots diverted to Jackson where they made a safe landing.

Continental Express Emergency Landing

What: Continental Express flight from Knoxville to Houston
Where: Jackson- Evers International Airport
When: Sep 12, 2011, 11:45 am
Who: 52 aboard
Why: The flight was en route to Houston when it developed problems including smoke in the cockpit.

The crew heard an audible pop when they began smelling (but not seeing) smoke. The pilots diverted to Jackson- Evers International Airport and made a safe landing. Emergency services were on standby during the landing. THere were no reported injuries.

Repairs were made to the plane and the flight resumed by 12:30 pm.

Ajar Door Disrupts Continental Flight

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Andrew Compolo

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737-800 en route from Port of Spain ,Trinidad/Tobago to Houston,TX
Where: Port of Spain
When: Aug 16 2011
Who: 155 passengers and 6 crew
Why: After takeoff, the crew noted an indication that a door was open.

The flight crew elected to return to the airport where they made a safe landing.
The door was closed, and the flight took off again and continued normally, arriving several hours late, but safely.

Continental Engine Shut Down over Indianapolis

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Frank Robitaille

What: Continental Express/Expressjet Embraer ERJ-145 en route from Indianapolis to Newark
Where: Indianapolis
When: June 1, 2011
Who: 51
Why: While en route, the flight developed an oil pressure problem. At 10,000 feet, the pilot requested a return to the airport due to the engine issue. He shut down the left engine and returned to Indianapolis to make a safe landing.

Passengers were rerouted to alternative flights.

Flight Attendant injured in Turbulence

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Nino Buda-CYYZ Aviation Photography

What: Continental Airlines/Colgan Air de Havilland Dash 8-400 en route from Newark to Washington DC
Where: Washington
When: May 16th 2011
Who: Flight attendant
Why: While en route, the plane encountered turbulence in which a flight attendant experienced injury. The plane did not divert, but continued to make a safe landing.

Paramedics dealt with the flight attendant’s injuries

St. Louis: Unruly Passenger Left Behind

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737-800 en route from Houston to Chicago
Where: Saint Louis
When: May 8th 2011
Who: disruptive passenger
Why: While en route, a passenger attempted to open a plane door, saying he had to get out of the plane. He was subdued and restrained, as the flight diverted to Lambert International Airport, where the passenger in question was released into police custody. Charges may be pending.

Flight Cancelled Due to UFO (Unidentified Foul Odor)

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Contact photographer

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737 en route from San Antonio to Houston
Where: San Antonio
When: Apr 28, 2011
Who: 151 aboard
Why: The plane had taken off and developed a “strong chemical odor.” The pilots returned to San Antonio International Airport and made a safe landing; however they did not know the cause of the odor and for caution’s sake, took the plane to the “ramp” area. Several passengers developed respiratory distress.

The crew boarding wore hazmat suits. The source of the chemical odor was not identified.

Colgan Air Engine Fire, Belly Landing in Pittsburgh

Pictured: Not N339NG but another DHC-8-402Q Dash 8
Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Nino Buda-CYYZ Aviation Photography

What: Colgan Air de Havilland Dash 8-400 on behalf of Continental Airlines en route from Cleveland,OH to Baltimore,MD
Where: Pittsburgh
When: Mar 17th 2011
Who: not available
Why: While en route, left engine indicated a fire.

The crew shut down the engine and diverted to Pittsburgh where they made a safe landing 30 minutes after the initial alert. There were no injuries.

Continental Bird Strike

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Juan Carlos Guerra – FlyAPM

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737-800 en route from Washington DC to Houston
Where: Washington’s International Airport
When: Feb 28th 2011, 7:45 a.m
Who: 44 passengers
Why: On takeoff, the plane’s engines digested birds. Following the bird strike, the plane diverted to Washington’s International Airport and made a safe landing. Passengers were booked on alternative flights.

United and Continental Offer Rebooking Options to Customers Affected by Weather Forecast for Texas


CHICAGO, Feb. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ —

United Continental Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: UAL) today announced travel options for United and Continental customers whose flight plans may be affected by severe winter weather forecast for Texas. Weather conditions are expected to lead to the delay or cancellation of certain flights at Continental’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport Houston hub for travel from Feb. 2 through Feb. 4. Other cities throughout Texas may also be affected.

Change Flights for No Fee at united.com or continental.com

Customers scheduled on flights to, from or through the impacted areas may reschedule their itinerary with a one-time date or time change, and the change fees will be waived. If a flight has been canceled, a refund in the original form of payment may be requested. Complete details and eligible travel dates are available at united.com and continental.com.

The fastest and most convenient way to change travel plans is via united.com or continental.com. Customers should continue to manage their reservations on the respective company’s website from which their ticket was purchased. Customers may also book a new reservation, change an existing reservation or check flight status by calling United Reservations at 800-UNITED-1 or Continental Reservations at 800-525-0280 or their travel agent. Another excellent way to receive information about flight delays, cancellations and gate changes is with United’s EasyUpdate service or Continental’s TripAlert service, which provide customers notifications via phone, text or e-mail.

Smokey Continental Airlines Flight Lands at Newark

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Heber Alejandro Doblado Perez

What: Continental Airlines Boeing 737-700 en route from Newark to Boston
Where: Newark Liberty Airport
When: Jan 26, 2011
Why: On take-off, the plane filled with smoke. The pilot announced that the smoke was due to de-icing procedures, and made an emergency landing in Newark. Weather conditions at the time included snow, and freezing temperatures.

The plane made a safe landing with emergency services on standby.

Aeromar and Continental Airlines to Start Codeshare Flights

CHICAGO and MEXICO CITY, Jan. 25, 2011
Aeromar and Continental Airlines, a wholly-owned subsidiary of United Continental Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: UAL) and a Star Alliance member, today announced that they will begin codeshare cooperation on routes within Mexico.

Effective Feb. 1, 2011 Continental will initially place its code on Aeromar-operated flights between Mexico City and 13 destinations in Mexico. The codeshare builds on frequent-flyer cooperation launched in August 2010 that permits Continental OnePass members to accrue and redeem miles on all Aeromar-operated flights. In addition, Continental international first- and business-class passengers, Presidents Club members and Star Alliance Gold customers may access Aeromar’s Salon Diamante lounge in Mexico City.

“The expansion of our partnership with Continental Airlines via codesharing will continue to broaden our leading joint market presence to better serve our customers, especially at a time when Aeromar is phasing in its first regional jets and further developing its route network within Mexico,” said Ami Lindenberg, Aeromar president.

“We are pleased to expand our cooperation with Aeromar, which complements our extensive service to Mexico and offers new options to our customers,” said Jim Compton, executive VP and chief revenue officer of United Continental Holdings, Inc.

About Aeromar

Founded in 1987, Aeromar is Mexico’s most experienced airline. From its main operations base at Mexico City’s International Airport Terminal 2, Aeromar currently covers a network of 21 destinations in Mexico, as well as San Antonio, Texas, in the U.S.A. It performs over 100 average daily flights with a fleet of ATR-42 turboprop and CRJ-200 jet complying with the IOSA certification for the airline industry’s highest operational and safety audited standards established by IATA.

Aeromar is a highly customer-focused airline, featuring the most convenient schedules and amenities for the business and leisure traveler, such as the “Salon Diamante” executive lounges, which are available at the Aguascalientes, Colima, Jalapa, Mexico City and Tepic airports. All-inclusive vacation packages, VIP charter flights and “FastPaq” courier and freight are among some of Aeromar’s additional products and services. For further information please visit us on the web at www.aeromar.us.

Logan Emergency Landing

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Michael Carter

What: Continental/ ExpressJet Embraer ERJ-145 en route from Manchester NH to Newark NJ
Where: Logan
When: Jan 18, 2010
Who: 44 passengers and 3 crew
Why: After taking off 6 hours late after ground stops due to the weather, after five minutes in flight, smoke in the cabin forced the pilots to divert to Logan Airport. Emergency was declared due to “smoke in the lavatory.” In the meantime, passengers were covering their faces because of the smoke. A leak, mechanical problem and possible fire was reported on the Continental flight and speculation is that de-icing fluid had infiltrated the engine, causing burn-off.

The plane landed safely at Logan, with emergency crews on standby.

37 passengers boarded another plane around 3 pm to continue to their destination.

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