Miracle on the Hudson' First Officer to Speak at AEA Convention

Jeff Skiles, first officer of US Airways Flight 1549, "The Miracle on the Hudson," is the guest speaker for the AEA Annual Awards Luncheon on Friday, April 9, during the Aircraft Electronics Association's 53rd annual International Convention & Trade Show, from April 7-10, in Orlando, Fla.

Rockwell Collins and the AEA are sponsoring Skiles who, with a great sense of humor and his natural storytelling ability, details the lessons, training and scenarios that led to the safe evacuation of 155 passengers and crew.

On a bright, 20-degree afternoon in January 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 barreled down New York La Guardia Airport's main runway, loaded with 155 passengers and crew, headed skyward for Charlotte, N.C. Everything was normal until First Officer Jeff Skiles spotted a formation of Canada geese on the right side of the aircraft, seemingly headed directly toward them. Skiles, who was flying the plane manually, was relieved when the nose of the plane rose above the geese, but that relief was short-lived. A few seconds later, he heard four distinct thunks as the birds crashed into the engines of the Airbus A320. Both engines immediately failed. Skiles lost his instrument panel.

In his humble, Midwestern style, Skiles explains the key lessons of teamwork, adaptability, training and preparation, which he and his crewmates relied on that day, and relates these concepts to the daily lives of individuals and organizations.

From the mechanics and the maintenance workers to the people who write the emergency protocols and the flight attendants, Skiles believes every level of the US Airways organization is responsible for the outcome on Jan. 15, 2009.

To register for the AEA Convention and Awards Luncheon, visit www.aea.net/convention.