Twelve years ago U.S. Airways Flight 1549 took off from LaGuardia Airport and two minutes later flew into a flock of Canadian geese. This damaged both engines and forced Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III to make an emergency water landing on the Hudson River. A nearby ferry captain, “Manny” Liba, was preparing his boat, and he froze when he looked up and saw the plane coming down.
With no hope of landing at any nearby airports, the captain attempted a rare and risky water landing and he told the 150 passengers aboard, “This is the captain, brace for impact.” As you can imagine for January in New York, the water was very cold that day when Liba came to the rescue.
As more rescue boats started arriving, Liba took forty shivering passengers aboard his ferry to the Marina and dropped them off to safety.
An investigation revealed that captain Sully’s decision to land in the river was appropriate. Days after the landing, crews pulled the plane from the water and transported it to the Carolinas Aviation Museum in Charlotte to be on display.