Asiana Flight 214

On July 6th, Asiana Flight 214, a Boeing 777 traveling from Seoul to San Francisco crashed when landing in San Francisco. On July 10th I boarded a Boeing 777 from San Francisco to Honolulu, on my way to the Marshall Islands.  From the window where I was seating, I could see the crashed plane. Not what one wants to see when embarking on a flight.

Asiana 214 at the San Francisco Airport, July 10th, 2013

Asiana 214 at the San Francisco Airport, July 10th, 2013

While our plane slowly taxied to the beginning of the runway, passengers on the right side of the plane had a chance to see the entire crash site and debris.  From the point the plane hit the runway, at the retaining wall.

A trail of debris

A trail of debris

Leaving a trail of debris along the runway.

more debris and the tail

more debris and the tail

With parts of the tail, components of the landing gear.

tail and landing gear

tail and landing gear

And curving to the left of the runway.

More parts and landing gear

More parts and landing gear

All the way to the point where the plane came to a stop.  Boeing, FAA and NTSB officials were still collecting data on the crash, that’s why the crashed plane was still there a few days after the crash.

Where the plane came to a stop.

Where the plane came to a stop.

Then my plane turned toward the runway, we were ready for take off. Time for passengers on the left side of the plane to have a viewing.

Passengers on left side having a look

Passengers on left side having a look

I don’t know what my fellow passengers were thinking about as we stared at this crash site. I was reminding myself that flying is safer than riding a motorcycle. Which solved the immediate impact of seeing a crashed plane just before my flight starts. But certainly does not go very well with me, no matter how I rationalize about it, because I love riding.

This plane crashed because it was going too slow, but almost everyone survived because it was going too slow.  My thoughts go to all passengers who were injured in this flight and especially for the family of the two people who died.

I was still thinking about this a couple of days later, as I was walking in the Honolulu airport toward my flight to the Marshall Islands when I ran into Alain, a riding buddy of mine who has been in Australia for more than a year. We were both very surprised by the encounter, but did not have a chance to catch up. I hear he is planning a ride around the world on a Tenere 660. Good for him!

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4 Responses to Asiana Flight 214

  1. bob skoot says:


    what luck meeting an old friend. Even if you had arranged ahead of time to meet it would have been a challenge.

    I’m not sure I would have wanted to view the crashed plane either, or even a crashed bike that you ride past. At least with a bike you have skills to take avoidance action. With a plane all you can do is just sit there and take what comes and hope that you are one of the lucky ones

    better to go to Australia before Alain leaves so you have a tour guide to show you around

    Riding the Wet Coast

  2. Chillertek says:

    I saw a bike crash today when I was on my way to work. Looked like a guy on a ZZR250 got taken out by a SUV. He was laying on the road and the ambo’s had just turned up. I didn’t think for one moment of not riding anymore. Its funny that when you see a crashed plane you don’t want to be there. Its probably the element of your not in control of your own destiny that plays on your mind the most.

    • cesardagord says:

      I agree with you, the idea that we are in control in comforting. Until that SUV appears out of nowhere. But still, statistically right or wrong, despite all of the stories we hear and see, I still think it is better to be on my motorcycle and not in a plane, in terms of safety.

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