What Happened to the Pilot in Florida? How did a Non-Pilot Passenger Fly the Plane Back Home?
We have seen lots of uncanny things happening in movies that somewhat seem surreal and we are not amazed by that cause that’s just acting and we all are well aware of it but what if you find out a random passenger flew a plane without any prior experience and landed it, we will be amazed right? This is how a man who became an overnight hero for his bravery did in Florida and surprised everyone by piloting and landing a plane with no prior knowledge.
On the 10th of May, Tuesday afternoon a nonpilot lands a plane in Florida, when the pilot of the plane goes unconscious. So what exactly happened let’s see the whole situation and try feeling it for ourselves.
Passenger Lands Plane in Florida with No Prior Experience
The single-engine Cessna 208 was boarding from the Bahamas and flying to Florida which is only an hour-long journey on Tuesday, 10th May. The plane was carrying two passengers with the pilot when the pilot suddenly started to feel unwell and told the boarding passengers that he was not feeling well and then he suddenly passed out.
So, we can imagine how it would feel when you are in the middle of the air and the panic of seeing the vast sky without a pilot. This must be the situation for the two passengers but in between the panic, the heroic passenger Darren Harrison took the lead and pilot seat and put on the headphone, and called for help.
This is when Harrison was guided by air traffic controller Robert Morgan, who has been a pilot instructor for more than 20 years and a certified instructor. He guided Harrison, the inexperienced pilot, to land the plane in Palm Beach International.
Their conversations during the guiding on board can be heard as audio recorded in the flight. Harrison said,
“I’ve got a serious situation here. My pilot has gone incoherent. I have no idea how to fly the airplane.”
Then Morgan replied,
“ATC: 333 Lima Delta, Roger, what’s your position?”
Harrison replied back,
“I have no idea. I can see the coast of Florida in front of me but I have no idea.”
Then morgan tried to keep Harrison calm and not to make him panic he replied,
“Maintain wings level and just try to follow the coast, either northbound or southbound. We are trying to locate you.”
The Controller of the Situation
Morgan was in a break when he was told about the situation and he was told that the passenger has never flown a plane before.
Morgan said to CNN,
“He was really calm. In my eyes, he was the hero. I was just doing my job.”
Morgan then said that Harrison was planning to land the plane at Boca Raton in Florida but Morgan made the decision to guide him to the biggest airport of Palm Beach to make it easy for the passenger turned pilot. He said,
“Just so he could just have a really big target to aim at.”
Harrison further said,
“I felt like I was going to cry then because I had so much adrenaline built up. I was really happy that it worked out and that nobody got hurt.”
The plane landed safely at Palm Beach in the late afternoon at 16: 37, without any injuries, and later the heroic Harrison and his guide Morgan hugged and greeted one another.
Harrison’s Experience with the Situation
During the whole situation the main hero who has shown us the act of bravery told NBC News about his experience. He said that when he was asked about his heart rate during the onboard situation he said that it was nearly in the 90s and after it was all over it must nearly be at 160.
This has now become something out of a tv drama, but now we believe that miracles like this can happen and nothing is impossible if we have the strong will to overcome something, and the proof is Darren Harrison.
What Happened to the Pilot that Passed Out?
Now everything is fine and the whole panicky situation on board is safely settled down, so now what happened to the unconscious pilot, is he doing well?
As mentioned, the pilot was not feeling well and suddenly he passed out and that’s how the panicky situation began. The pilot was taken to the hospital after the landing of the plane and was put into emergency care according to the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration). They haven’t mentioned the name or any details about the pilot but they have informed that the pilot’s health was not well and was under surgery, however, he was released on Monday 16th May, and his condition is much more stable than before.