“Medical emergency, captain is incapacitated”
That was the call from the cockpit to the air traffic controller once the pilot on board fell sick and appeared to pass out.
The U.S. Airways (now owned and operated by American Airlines) was headed from Phoenix to Boston when they had to make an unscheduled stop in Syracuse, NY for an emergency landing.
Firefighters were on the ground when the plane arrived and immediately took the pilot into their care.
Unfortunately the pilot was pronounced dead.
What could have happened?
While it’s terrifying to think you could be on an airplane when the pilot croaks, leaving you stranded in mid-air, the FAA assured everyone that no passengers were in danger.
Lucky for everyone on board the FAA was right this time, and the co-pilot had his shit together.