Plane Nearly Lands Sideways As High Winds Strike Chicago

Dramatic footage showing a passenger plane nearly landing sideways at Chicago’s O’Hare airport emerged earlier this week, as strong winds assailed the city.

Aviation officials announced more than a thousand delays of up to an hour, according to ABC 7, with 70 flights cancelled on Thursday. One passenger plane, however, experienced an exceptionally tricky landing, as the pilots were called upon to utilize all of their training to safely get the plane on the ground.

As the Daily Mail notes, video revealed one plane seemingly traveling across the width of a runway as it approached for a landing. The technique is referred to as a “crab” in aviation terms, and involves the pilots turning their plane into a crosswind, in order to remain in line with the runway.

AccuWeather.com Forecaster Elliot Abrams noted the difficulties pilots face when trying to land a plane under such adverse conditions.

“In the video, the plane tries to come in straight into the wind, but anytime there are strong winds not parallel to the runway, the pilot has to make last-minute adjustments in order to land safely,” he said. “The stronger the wind, and the gustier it is, the trickier it is.”

Chicago is especially notable for travel-related delays, like those caused by high winds. The Bureau of Transportation Statistics observes that O’Hare is the top ranked airport in the country for flight delays.

Wind gusts as high as 30 to 40 miles an hour were reported in Chicago during the evening hours, making planes teeter back and forth as they landed. The rough weather marks the second instance of wind-related problems in Chicago in less than a week. On Halloween, powerful winds brought mammoth waves to Chicago’s Lake Shore Drive, doing thousands of dollars in damage.

Severe weather is predicted across the U.S. over the coming week, as the Inquisitr has previously noted. A storm striking Alaska is set to drive an arctic air mass toward the lower 48 states. Chicago is expected to see temperatures as low as 30 to 35, a full 15 degrees colder than normal. During the last polar vortex, Chicago was one of the cities to be most adversely affected.

[Image: WLS Chicago via the Daily Mail]