Flight Attendant: 'I Have No Idea' When We're Landing

Investigation continues into errant Northwest flight
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 23, 2009 10:42 AM CDT
Flight Attendant: 'I Have No Idea' When We're Landing
A Northwest Airlines jet sits on the tarmac at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Friday, Oct. 23, 2009.   (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

The passengers aboard the Northwest flight that overshot the Minneapolis airport by 150 miles—possibly while the pilots napped—didn't have a clue anything was amiss beyond a nagging sense that the flight was taking a long time. One tells the Star Tribune that he asked about it, and a flight attendant returned 10 minutes later with the puzzling reply, "I have no idea when we're going to get to the terminal."

Federal investigators have yet to formally interview the pilots, who say they got distracted by a debate on airline policy—for an hour and 20 minutes. They also stopped communicating with controllers, prompting the Air National Guard to put fighter jets on alert. When the plane finally landed, "everybody stood up and got ready to exit," another passenger tells the Pioneer Press. "The flight attendant said, 'Everybody sit back down please.' " Armed federal authorities then boarded to make sure all was OK. (Read more pilots stories.)

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