The Fourth of July weekend was relatively quiet in Silicon Valley. With the downtown San Jose fireworks show cancelled this year, no air cannons thumped the ground a few miles away to launch fireworks. No idiots shot fireworks from their balcony, and, despite a few M-80s going off, the apartment complex didn’t burn to the ground. The only major fireworks was an airplane crash landing at SFO on Saturday, especially this picture showing people exiting the burning airliner with luggage in hand.
I have never taken an airplane trip. That will change next month when I go to Las Vegas for my birthday. My roommate reassured that me that the 737’s that Southwest Airlines flies are older than the 777’s flown by Asiana Airlines. That’s reassuring (I think). If the airplane I’m on does a crash landing on the tarmac, the last thing I’ll do is haul out my carryon luggage from the overhead bin, blocked everyone else in the aisle from getting out, go down the emergency slide and drag it across the tarmac.
From the various reports that I read, first class passengers were able to grab their carryon luggage and head for the slides, business class passengers got stuck as the slides didn’t deploy, and coach passengers got screwed as the tail section hit the seawall and broke off. The more I read about this crash, the more I’m reminded of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912: first class passengers got into the lifeboats, business passengers grabbed whatever else that floated, and everyone else went down with the ship.
The stupidity of some people never ceases to amaze me.
I have to wonder what was so important in their carryon luggage that they couldn’t leave it behind. With airport security being the way it is, I doubt they were trying to smuggle anything valuable through customs like a pouch of diamonds, a stash of weed, or a flock of parrots. One pair stood next to two boxes of duty-free alcohol while watching the airplane burn, raising questions whether the boxes got smuggled on board or stolen from the kitchen area. Since a gaggle of Silicon Valley executives was on this flight, their most valuable possession was probably data on a smartphone in their pants pocket.