Have you ever flown through a Hurricane? (Turbulence Part II)

Still not sure that you think the airplane can withstand the worst turbulence?  Well, it’s hard to imagine any more turbulent of air than that of a hurricane.  When these storms make landfall they have been known to level houses and buildings in addition to flinging cars and boats through the air.  They are truly one of the most destructive forces of nature and one that people should take very seriously!

However, it is worth noting that both military and civilian airplanes have been flying into hurricanes for almost seventy years without incident.  The first of such flights actually occurred back in 1943 during World War II with very basic propeller aircraft.  Today, flights into hurricanes are done for the sole purpose of weather research.  Of course, it’s important to remember that these flights only carry scientists and related professionals, not ordinary passengers.  Out of an abundance of caution and passenger comfort, airliners are always routed well clear of hurricanes and any storms of such magnitude.  Likewise, airline pilots will always choose the safest flight path to minimize risks and would never purposefully fly into any bad storm, much less a hurricane.

In any case, the airplanes that have flown into these storms are not unlike any of today’s airliners.  They are not specially reinforced, designed, or equipped for the purpose of flying into extreme weather.  Ironically, they are in most cases far less advanced and not constructed as well as a modern airliner.  And yet, they routinely operate in one of the harshest and most violent environments in the sky without any issues.  These planes are typically operated by organizations with an interest in studying the weather, like the National Weather Service, Navy, or Air Force.  But this helps to demonstrate just how safe today’s airliners really are!

So, you can rest easy knowing that  plane that you take on your upcoming business trip or vacation is quite capable of safely operating in the worst of weather conditions.  Likewise, you should know that really bad storms will always be avoided because there’s simply no reason for subjecting passengers to such a bumpy flight.   As a pilot, I just want you to understand that no matter how bad the turbulence you experience may seem, the airplane is capable of safely handling much, much worse.

-Have you ever flown through a Hurricane? (Turbulence Part II)-

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2 Responses to Have you ever flown through a Hurricane? (Turbulence Part II)

  1. Pingback: What Causes Turbulence? | Scared Flightless

  2. Pingback: How do weather delays improve safety? | Scared Flightless

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