I was on Delta flight 1491 from New York’s La Guardia Airport to Cincinnati at 6:45 A.M this morning. About two minutes after takeoff, the cabin began to fill with smoke…the captain told us over the intercom that they in fact realized the cabin was filling with smoke and that they were circling back to La Guardia for an immediate landing, and asked us to prepare. Oh my god – my life flashed before my eyes. Upon the approach, the runway was dotted the entire length with fire trucks, ambulances and police cars. We made it back to the gate and were told there was a problem with the auxiliary power, and that oil had overflowed from some unknown place and began to burn.
I was thrilled to be alive, and I thank the pilots who seemed to know what they were doing. Upon exiting the aircraft, it was surreal to hear the stewardesses say “thanks for flying Delta, sorry for the inconvenience.” However, once back inside the gate at the airport, there was complete disorganization. I stood in two special lines for re-booking for about an hour, but neither seemed to move. I exited the main boarding area and attempted to figure out the rest of my travels at the first-class check-in desk. After another 30 minutes, I found out another Delta flight was scheduled to Cincinnati four hours later. I decided to call off my trip and request a refund.
After such a shell-shocking experience , I’m genuinely shocked at how unprepared the Delta staff and system were to deal with customers upon their return to safety. Do they realize what passengeres just went through?!!! After my recent experience on Delta/Song, I guess I shouldn’t expect anything more. There was a funny sign outside that read: "Delta. We believe good goes around." Yeah, right!
But at least I’m alive – that’s really all I care about right now!
Btw, pictures are via my handy Treo, and full slide show on Flickr. But I’m not sure I want to remember this day.