ABC’s “20/20” labeled John Wayne Airport (SNA) as America’s scariest airport to its due short runway and planes taking off at degree angles 25-degree angles compared to the usual 10-degree angles.
A small airport set among some of the most affluent communities in the US has been branded one the scariest places to fly in the world, due to shortened runways and steep takeoffs to comply with local noise regulations.
Known worldwide for its fast-and-furious departures, John Wayne Airport (SNA) – set in scenic Southern California – boasts one of the fastest takeoff rolls in the world, with planes taking off at 25 degree angles compared to usual 10.
This rapid ascents makes for a reverse rollercoaster ride with each departure, but also serves to reduce noise pollution in highbrow neighborhoods like Newport Beach, Irvine, and Costa Mesa.
An especially short runway – measuring in at 5,700ft as opposed to the usual 13,000 feet – likely further enflames riders’ fears, forcing departing aircraft to ascend in an especially aggressive matter almost immediately after takeoff.
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SNA flights are thus quick, loud and sudden right from the start – hence its dubious reputation. Since its 1979 opening, travel sites have come to a consensus the airport is among the world’s scariest, with ABC’s ’20/20′ labeling it one of the most dangerous airports in the world.
A British Airways pilot collapsed and died shortly before he was due to captain a packed jet.
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