Memphis Flyers Continue Flying After Crash

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  • Memphis flyers say deadly plane crash won’t keep them grounded
  • Some admit paying more attention to safety in the sky
  • Bombardier Q400’s rarely fly in or out of Memphis International Airport

(Memphis, 2/13/2009) One day after the nation’s first deadly airline crash since the Summer of 2006, flyers at Memphis International Airport were brushing aside any fears of flying, and lining up to board flights.

While Memphis-based Pinnacle Airlines flies more flights in and out of the airport than any other passenger carrier, it’s rare to see a Bombardier Q400, the type of plane that crashed Thursday near Buffalo, at Memphis International.

Yet, many passengers admit, safety was on their minds Friday.

The images she saw on TV Friday morning, were not the ones Donna Aprati wanted to see, just hours before boarding a plane in Minneapolis, headed back to the Mid South.

“A bit of fear traveling on a small plane, similar to that type of a plane,” admitted Aprati minutes after landing in Memphis.

But Thursday’s crash, wasn’t enough to keep her grounded. Yet, the regular flyer admitted, it made her take safety a little more seriously.

“Of course I checked out where the exit rows are and made sure I’m not too far away,” said Aprati.

A heightened sense of awareness, was something Darius Kelley packed too.

“Just looking around, you hear strange noises, you hear them all the time when you fly, but when you see something like what happened last night, you think about it a little more,” said Kelley who had flown in from Orlando.

Other travelers like Madison Davis said the crash weighed little on their minds.

“I just wasn’t really thinking,” said Davis as she arrived to catch a flight for a vacation to New York City. “I just hope I get lucky and don’t crash.”

But Aprati takes a different view.

“You know, the chance of having another crash is very unlikely,” she reasoned.

The bottom line, flyers say, a few tense moments in the sky, beats spending all day on the roads.

“I thought about it because I have an old ’87 mustang my dad wants, so I thought about driving it,” said Kelley. “But then that 13 hours, I decided to fly.”