Saturday, October 20, 2007

"I Thought I Was Going to Die"

Dropping in the polls pales in comparison to the drop in altitude for the USC Trojans Thursday night.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) -- The plane carrying USC's football team to South Bend plummeted during a severe thunderstorm, forcing the pilot to abort his first landing attempt.

There were about 125 people, including 82 players, on the chartered flight Thursday night for the cross country trip for Saturday's game.

"That was terrifying," fullback Stanley Havili told the Los Angeles Times. "I thought I was going to die."

Some passengers were thrown from their seats by turbulence as lightning crackled around the storm-tossed plane, USC sports information director Tim Tessalone told The Associated Press on Friday. Safety Taylor Mays was screaming.

"It was a little bit of a roller coaster drop there for a minute," Tessalone said. "We had some people fly out of some seats. Everybody is fine, but it was a frightening little dip there."

The pilot aborted the approach and circled around the storm before landing without incident about 20 minutes later to the relief of the shaken team and the spouses of some staff members also on the flight, Tessalone said.
More from the LA Times.
USC players and team personnel were still talking about Thursday night's harrowing plane ride into South Bend, which featured a major drop during a lightning storm.

Several passengers were thrown from their seats and hit their heads on the ceiling during an initial approach that was aborted before the plane circled and landed safely.

"There was a bunch of guys that couldn't wait to get down that ramp and get their feet on the ground," Carroll said. "Some of the guys were kissing the ground.

"We're thrilled to be here. I don't know if anybody's going to get on the plane on the way home, though."

No comments: