Video of Astra Airlines runway overrun at Thessaloniki Airport

Check out this crazy video of an Astra Airlines Boeing 737-800 landing at Thessaloniki Airport:

The runway is 7,900 feet long and the weather was nice, so I think it’s safe to say this was pilot error and they should have gone around. They were coming in way too fast and without enough flaps. And while I’m sure everyone was just happy to be alive, I can’t help but chuckle a bit at all the clapping.

Reminds me almost exactly of the Airphil Express runway overrun in Kalibo last year:

Filed Under: Other Airlines, Videos
  1. @Lucky – Seriously dude, I expected better from you. It’s not safe to assume “pilot error” simply because the weather was good and the runway was long. There are dozens of other possibilities that need to be investigated and ruled out before one can reach any sort of “safe assumption”. That’s why there are professional investigators assigned to these accidents.

    You do a fantastic job explaining the “miles and points game” and writing very entertaining and educational trip reports, but please don’t attempt to become an armchair aviation safety analyst on top of that. You’ve done it thrice in recent memory – with some of your Royal Jordanian “analysis”, your comments about the 787 and now this – it just takes away from your credibility and can mislead the less knowledgeable folks among your numerous readers.

    With your large audience comes some responsibility for what you write. Use it wisely.

  2. @ Sean M. — Sincerely do appreciate the feedback and will keep it in mind in the future.

    For what it’s worth I did investigate this one a bit, though, and per the metars there were no winds, the plane touched down nearly half way down a 7,900 foot runway, and the flaps weren’t fully deployed on the approach.

    Curious to see if there’s a report and if so what it says…

  3. I doubt the incident is serious enough to be classified as an accident, so any reports would probably not be publicly available. Also, it occurred in Greece and HCAA isn’t exactly known for its transparency! šŸ™‚

  4. To the local aviation authority, that was a non-event.

    Here in the US? There would be lawsuits and vouchers.

  5. Shouldn’t a 737 touching down even halfway down a 7900′ runway still have plenty of time to stop? I mean, are full brakes and full thrust reversers really not enough to stop a 737 in 3900′?

  6. Pilot error? Both overruns were clearly caused by the use of electronic devices to record the landings! šŸ˜‰

  7. I would agree that lately you have been pretty quick to blame the pilots. Does it not make more sense that there was a possible mechanical hydraulic problem with the flaps? unless you speak Russian you can’t really know whether or not the pilots gave any warning of a problem etc either…Just saying, although pilot error can’t be ruled out you should reserve your critcism until all the facts are brought to light (if that happens).

  8. Amazing how clueless passenger in the second video is! They seem to have no idea how badly that could have ended…

  9. I’m certain that the passengers didn’t expect the overrun.
    I speak Russian and this is what has been said (with a bit more words, to make it understandable):
    [01:00] A football field (soccer for Americans)
    [01:07] Something to his child about what is written on the field there.
    [02:22] Emergency landing
    [02:26] Everyone alive?
    [02:31] Why are you clapping? For that kind of a landing, they should fire the pilot. And even better: kill him. He was really far.
    [02:42] We’re going to jump off a slide. (literately he said trampoline)
    [02:45] I recorded!
    [02:48] Holy f*
    [02:55] This was… (here the videos stops)

  10. Anyways…
    I do agree with most of the people here that lucky maybe has jumped to conclusions too fast.
    Nevertheless, I think he is right:

    * The plane did indeed land only in the middle of the runway (which is way too late). They had to do a go-around…
    * As Andrew mentioned, 3.900′ isn’t enough. If it was fully loaded, and in ideal conditions (like dry runway). And take in to account that the flaps weren’t fully extended: they needed at least 4.500′. (And from the video we can see that this was roughly the distance they used, so probably no mechanical failure of brakes / thrust reverser). This is a rough estimation from the data I can find. I’m not a pilot though! So I may be wrong.

  11. @ Stefan — If there were hydraulics issues maybe the pilots shouldn’t have landed halfway down the runway, no?

  12. Good God mama-Sean. I hope you didn’t knock the Candelabra off your piano when dictated your comment.

    The thing on your head. I think it’s a tiara, but I have no proof. Oh dear God, what did I just do there? Hum a ring at me.

    And may I point out that you needn’t worry about Lucky doing it again since there’s nothing after thrice. I assume the people in history who liked to say thrice didn’t live long enough to come up with another. Oops, I did it again. I played with your heart. Got lost in the game. Hum another ring at me. Oh baby, baby.

    I do love your last paragraph though. It’s very theatrical. While I suppose most would see you and the white silk gloves as Voltaire, I prefer to imagine you as Uncle Ben with white silk gloves in the scene where he looks up at Spiderman and says “With great audience comes great responsibility.” But, for a surprise twist, you then sit up, completely unharmed by Spiderman’s web of assumptions and start slapping the sticks out of him while you scream things like “How dare you” followed by “Royal Jordanian”, “787” and “now this”. And, for a grand finale, you pull one glove off, whip your hair back and give him one last long, sweeping slap while you let out a shrilly “Seriously dude, I expected better from you.” Magnifico.

    But Lucky, seriously, really. Some of us, maybe a good number are as Sean pointed out, are less knowledgeable. Or, if we’re being completely honest here, are just plain stupid. Your pen is to be used wisely. After all, your pen-is-powerful and if you just starting shooting from the hip a lot of us will have red eyes. From being mislead of course.

  13. the logo on the wing does not look like an Astra Airlines airplane at all. Where did you get your info from?

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