A couple of heroes this week. A Vietnam Veteran and a social network.
Police and fire personnel put up with some amazing things. Their work goes unrecognized. Kudos to them.
Earlier this week, a routine flight from New York to Charlotte almost turned fatal when some Canadian geese flew directly into the jet’s engines. The engines, unable to handle the impact shut down. The pilot was basically flying a glider.
The control tower told the pilot to head to another airport. The pilot, who knew he couldn’t make it, lined up his plane with the Hudson River in New York City and landed the plane on water. No deaths, just minor injuries.
Captain Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger was hailed as a hero around the world for saving all 155 passengers and crew on the US Airways flight bound for Charlotte, North Carolina.
This pilot is a hero. America needs a hero now more than ever. It seems when America, is down we look for heroes and things to make us feel better.
On another note.
Twitter.com got a lot of press from the Hudson River incident. One of the first pictures to surface from the Hudson River was from a twitter user.
The picture was taken by Twitter user Janis Krums, who posted the picture to Twitpic. He was on the scene before the TV cameras arrived and was able to inform Twitter users that people had survived and that rescuers were trying to pick them up (“There’s a plane in the Hudson. I’m on the ferry going to pick up the people. Crazy.”)
There was more Twitter information, too. Plane-related tweets accounted for eight of the 10 top “trending topics” (Hudson River, MSNBC, US Airways, LaGuardia, etc.) Clicking through to them led to reactions from thousands of concerned people, and brief updates from some of them about what had happened, including references to reports that everyone had survived and that officials believed a flock of birds had been sucked into — and thereby disabled — two of the plane’s engines during takeoff.
Google News had nothing at that early stage, and even Google Hot Trends — which serves a similar function to Twitter’s trending topics — had nothing on crash at first.
Of course, both of these Google services and the mainstream media will catch up. But during the plane crash, Twitter was on the scene right away, and caught many details before any other media outlet or major online service.