The Lesson is in the Location
I imagine by now we have heard just about enough concerning the ditching of USAir flight 1549 in the Hudson. The talking heads on all the television channels have beat the story to death. As far as I can tell, the only thing they haven’t done is track down the families of the geese and get their reactions.
I’ve made it a point not to post anything about the event until all the hype wound down, though there were times when some of the newscaster comments made that almost impossible. I really liked that one about the plane floating because it was pressurized.
There have been discussions about whether luck was involved or whether the final outcome was the product of the professional airline training that the captain and first officer had received. Aviatrix covered it well in her post on Cockpit Conversations titled Safety is Not a Miracle. Could any other airline pilot have done the same thing? That’s impossible to say, because only these two pilots were involved. You’d like to think that any of the pilots operating at that level could have done the same thing. I’m sure that airline training departments all over the world are developing simulator scenarios to test that thesis. There is no doubt that the flight deck and cabin crew performances will be used for many years as an example of how you would like every off-airport landing to end.