United Flight 2477 Veers Off Runway in Houston, Texas

by | Mar 9, 2024 | Aviation Accident

There was an incident involving United Airlines Flight 2477 in Houston, Texas on March 8, 2024.  The plane, a Boeing 737 MAX 8, was en route from Memphis, Tennessee to Houston with 160 people on board.  While landing at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, the plane went off the runway and ended up in the grass.  It is unclear if anyone on board was injured.

A passenger airplane may veer off the taxiway due to a variety of reasons, ranging from pilot error to mechanical failures and adverse weather conditions. Pilot error could involve misjudgment of the taxiway’s width, confusion about ground control instructions, or distraction within the cockpit. Such errors are more likely during periods of low visibility, such as in heavy fog or at night, where the visual cues that help guide pilots along the taxiway become obscured. Mechanical failures, such as issues with the aircraft’s steering mechanisms or braking systems, can also lead to an inability to stay on the designated path, forcing the airplane off the taxiway. These systems are crucial for navigating the ground safely, and any malfunction could significantly impair the pilot’s control over the aircraft.

Adverse weather conditions, including ice, snow, or heavy rain, can dramatically increase the risk of an airplane leaving the taxiway. Slippery conditions reduce the effectiveness of the aircraft’s brakes and steering, making it challenging to adhere to the intended path, especially during turns or when slowing down. Moreover, strong wind gusts can push the aircraft off course, compounding the difficulties pilots face in maintaining control. In such situations, the coordination between the flight crew, ground control, and airport maintenance teams responsible for managing taxiway conditions is critical in preventing incidents that could lead to the airplane departing from the taxiway.

When a passenger airplane leaves the taxiway, the sudden and unexpected movement can easily lead to injuries among passengers and crew members onboard. Such incidents might cause the aircraft to jolt or shake violently, potentially throwing unrestrained passengers or those moving about the cabin against seats, walls, or overhead bins. This can result in a range of injuries from minor cuts and bruises to more severe harm like concussions or broken bones. Furthermore, the psychological impact of experiencing such an event can lead to stress and anxiety for passengers, particularly for those with a fear of flying. In cases where an evacuation becomes necessary, the risk of injury may increase as passengers rush to exit the aircraft, emphasizing the importance of adherence to safety instructions and the use of seat belts even when the aircraft is on the ground.

There have been a number of recent plane crashes in 2024.  A Cirrus SR20 crashed onto a golf course in Key Largo, Florida on March 1, 2024.  Two people were killed when a Globe GC-1B plane crashed in Afton, Minnesota on March 2, 2024.  A Piper Saratoga crashed in Nashville, Tennessee on March 4, 2024, killing all five people on board.  A Cirrus SR22 crashed due to an engine failure in Bellevue, Washington on March 5, 2024.

Spagnoletti Law Firm has attorneys licensed in Texas, Florida, New Mexico and New York.  We have handled numerous cases involving the failure of necessary equipment on a plane or helicopter in both federal and state court across the country.  When it comes to aviation, safety must come first.  Our attorneys have extensive experience in plane and helicopter crash litigation and the skills needed to aggressively represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or those who have been seriously injured in a plane or helicopter crash.  The experienced aviation attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of a crash. Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.