A huge cargo plane landed Wednesday night at the wrong airport in Wichita, Kansas — one that typically does not accommodate such large aircraft will attempt a take off at around noon on Thursday local time (and 17:00 GMT) using a runway far shorter than it would normally require.
On Wednesday night, the plane, due to land at McConnell Air Force Base from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport, missed its mark by about 12 miles and landed at the much-smaller, general-aviation Col. James Jabara Airport on the northeast side. Despite Jabara having no control tower and not normally handling jumbo jets, the Atlas Air 747 Dreamlifter landed without damage.
The Dreamlifter is a heavily modified 747-400 passenger airplane and it can accomodate more cargo by volume than any airplane in the world.
When fully loaded, the Dreamlifter requires more than half a mile extra runway to take off than is available at Jabara.
But hopes are high for a favourable result today as the weather is expected to be favourable and much of the fuel had been used in the flight from JFK, and this has lightened the weight of the plane thus shortening the distance required to take off. Apparently a new crew will be attempting the take off.
UPDATE: The plane took off without incident and safely flew for 12 miles to the correct airfield.