Cool and Calm at Newark Airport as Jetliner Lands on Just 2 Gear

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBC New York has obtained the recordings of the emergency landing of flight 634 nearly two months ago. (Published Wednesday, Mar 3, 2010)

    For all the controversy over the controller at JFK letting a kid direct air traffic, the Tower at Newark Liberty International showed its professionalism in guiding United Flight 634 to a safe landing back in January.

    The flight from Chicago with 53 people on board couldn't get its main right wing landing gear down. The crew nonetheless made a smooth landing in which no one was injured.

    "Good Luck, United," said an unidentified voice on the recordings released Wednesday to NBCNewYork.

    For well over half an hour, the pilot knew he had a problem.  As he came in low for a visual inspection pass, the pilot asked the tower "Guys, how does the gear look?"

    "There's no right gear down, there appears to be a door open on the right side," responded the Air Traffic Controller.

    A few minutes later, United 634 made another pass after working on its landing gear, and again from the Tower, "It appears that right main is still up and not down."

    Finally, the pilot decides he's going to have to chance it...landing a big Airbus on just two landing gear.

    Tower: "United 634, runway 4 left cleared to land."

    Pilot: "Cleared to land 4 left. Do you have the emergency equipment available?

    It was, and moments later came the touchdown on just two landing gear.

    Tower: "Trucks are right with you."

    Pilot: "Say it again."

    Tower: "The trucks are right behind you, they're right on the runway behind you."

    And then to the rescue equipment:

    Tower: "Truck One be advised I think the aircraft is evacuating."

    Everyone did evacuate, safely, and a few seconds later we hear, possibly from a fellow pilot waiting to take off, "Nice job guy."