Nice landing in downtown Montreal

Cessna 172M after forced landing in Montreal.

I have no idea how the flight got to this point, but according to this CBC article, once the pilot found himself low over downtown Montreal in a Cessna 172M without a working engine, he seems to have done a good job landing on Avenue du Parc in Montreal, with no harm to people or property.

The incident happened yesterday on September 10, the day before the fifth anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, so it’s easy to imagine how people might react when they saw a plane swooping down and landing in the middle of a major city, right? Wrong: Montreal continues to deserve its reputation as Canada’s (and North America’s?) most laid-back city. Here’s how people actually reacted:

No one was hurt during the emergency landing, which unfolded in front of a crowd of amused onlookers lounging on Mount Royal Park’s green hillside.

They hovered around the plane and snapped photos.

What about the police? Surely they activated some kind of emergency anti-terrorism plan? Well, actually …

Montreal police were the first emergency workers called to the scene.

Police spokesman Robert Mansueto said he’d never seen anything like this in the city.

“I think this surprised a lot of police officers,” Mansueto said.

“Everybody did a double take, you know, saying is this a joke or is this for real.”

Terrorists win whenever they make people afraid, so it’s nice to be able to celebrate a victory of common sense over fear on this otherwise-grim anniversary. Kudos to the good people of Montreal.

(Photo: Tanya Birkbeck, CBC)

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3 Responses to Nice landing in downtown Montreal

  1. Frank Ch. Eigler says:

    > […] Terrorists win whenever they make people afraid […]

    I’m starting to doubt this popular adage. All the terrorist attacks
    I’ve heard of have ulterior motives beyond “terror”. If they really
    thought that fear, having been duly caused many times now, was a
    victory, then they’d stop terrorizing.

    No, they want more stuff. The islamic bunch wants something regarding
    israel and a caliphate. The IRA wanted the UK out of northern ireland.
    And so on. Mere fear is more likely a means to the end.

  2. david says:

    Sorry it took me a while to respond to this. Terrorists win a tactical victory every time they make people afraid, similar to an army winning a battle. Winning a strategic victory — e.g., a war — is always trickier, especially since different (temporarily) allied groups cannot usually agree on the ideal outcome: U.S. out of the Middle East? U.S. in the Middle East but not on holy ground? U.S. in the Middle East but only if they behave responsibly? Sharia law? Democracy instead of monarchies? Jews/Sunnis/Shia/Druze/Arabs/Kurds/Turks/Parsi in/out of [fill in the region]? And that’s just the Middle East.

  3. It usually means a very abrupt stop for the aircraft on the short end of the procedure.

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