The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Think you can land a plane? We put average people to the test

By Andrea Sachs

20 May 2023 · 8 min read

Editor's Note

The Washington Post takes you inside a flight simulator to see if novices can handle the pressure of landing a plane in an emergency situation.

Less than a minute into a flight to Omaha, alarms started blaring. From the cockpit, the pilot uttered one worrisome word: "Yikes." He gripped the side stick, unwittingly disengaging the autopilot, and the plane shot into the clouds. It was a dangerous maneuver for any flight crew member, especially one without any experience.

"I have no clue what's going on," said Brett Daku, his voice barely registering over the din.

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