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Pulse-pounding video shows Asiana flight’s
panic as passenger opens door while still
in the air

Original Article

Posted By: mc squared, 5/26/2023 12:35:25 PM

A passenger aboard a South Korean flight opened an emergency door moments before the plane landed — sparking caught-on-video chaos and panic among the 194 passengers in the wind-swept cabin. The Asiana Airlines Airbus A321 was about to land in Daegu after a flight from the southern island of Jeju on Friday when the passenger pulled the emergency exit handle at an altitude of about 700 feet, officials said. Some of the other passengers tried to prevent the person from reaching the door but it partially opened, sending air whipping throughout the cabin as terrified fliers gripped their armrests.


The bigger item here is the aviation expert, saying opening the door against the air stream is "technically impossible, but somehow or another it has happened,”
Experts - what would we do without them?

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Reply 1 - Posted by: Rama41 5/26/2023 12:51:11 PM (No. 1478061)
As the altitude was only 700 feet, there was no difference in the air pressure inside and outside the aircraft. As I recall, as an aircraft climbs, inside pressure is maintained at 8000 feet, as outside pressure decreases. Differential pressures act against any effort to pull and open the door.
10 people like this.

Reply 2 - Posted by: DVC 5/26/2023 1:18:33 PM (No. 1478074)
Re: OP's comment. The "air stream" has zero to do with the impossibility of opening a passenger jet door when the aircraft is pressurized, which is any time it is climbing or at altitude. So, when the system is not pressurized, as it was not in this case...yes, there is nothing to prevent someone from opening a door, and the "air stream" has absolutely nothing to do with it. Pressurization starts as the aircraft takes off and climbs, internal pressure increasing as the aircraft altitude increases, up to the maximum design pressure. The overwhelming majority of these "passenger attempts to open the door" cases occurs during the cruise portion of flight, where the pressurization system is putting an internal pressure of about 12 psi, which means pounds per square inch. A square foot has 144 square inches so at altitude, the internal pressure force against a square foot is 1728 lbs. And even the smallest of the overwing emergency exits are about 4+ square feet, the force required to pull them inward against the interior air pressure is at LEAST 6,912 lbs, and the large main cabin doors are about 5 ft wide by 7 feet tall, so ~35 square feet, requiring over 60,000 lbs to move the initial inward part of their one will ever open the door on a pressurized aircraft. Unpressurized, which is the case very close to or on the ground....well, a whole different matter. But, when unpressurized it is just windy and noisy if they open an over wing exit, nobody will get "sucked out", so while certainly troublesome and a bit frightening, still not a big safety issue, IMO
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Reply 3 - Posted by: mc squared 5/26/2023 1:53:24 PM (No. 1478092)
Thanks for the knowledge, but I didn't say it was impossible - the aircraft expert did, as quoted in the NY Post article.
3 people like this.

Reply 4 - Posted by: jj1319 5/26/2023 2:23:54 PM (No. 1478102)
Try opening your car door at 39MPH. Not easy. Now, dial it up to 170MPH (I know) and try it. Logical conclusion: Airstream has a LOT to do with it.
6 people like this.

Reply 5 - Posted by: Starlifter Nav 5/26/2023 3:30:15 PM (No. 1478132)
Except that your car door opens OUTWARD, on a hinge, INTO the airstream. An aircraft emergency exit opens INWARD and will never enter / be affected by the " airstream". So..... no. Although it does appear to indicate that the "expert" a) may have no understanding of the nature of the incident or b) may be an idiot. (Or c) "Both a and b.")
3 people like this.

Reply 6 - Posted by: jj1319 5/26/2023 3:53:17 PM (No. 1478143)
Any "non" idiot can view the photo of the A321 and see that the door opens outward and towards the leading edge.
4 people like this.

Reply 7 - Posted by: DVC 5/26/2023 4:18:00 PM (No. 1478151)
My apologies to OP. I misunderstood.
3 people like this.

Reply 8 - Posted by: DVC 5/26/2023 4:21:31 PM (No. 1478155)
Re #4. Some aircraft doors open by tilting in, then swinging out, and those would be affected by air flow as you say. The overwing exits on many airliners are not hinged, just hatches that come straight in, where wind would affect them not at all.
3 people like this.

Reply 9 - Posted by: MrDeplorable 5/26/2023 4:35:00 PM (No. 1478165)
My fellow paratroopers out there in LucianneLand will agree with me that when that door opened, we would have stood up, hooked up, and checked our equipment.
13 people like this.

Reply 10 - Posted by: downnout 5/26/2023 4:37:40 PM (No. 1478169)
This is why I always kept my seat belt well buckled. Glad I no longer fly.
4 people like this.

Reply 11 - Posted by: mc squared 5/26/2023 4:43:50 PM (No. 1478170)
No need #7. We're long timers here.
3 people like this.

Reply 12 - Posted by: Rama41 5/26/2023 5:10:02 PM (No. 1478181)
#6. Cabin doors have a tapered shape that seals them once pressure is applied, much like a plug. Some doors retract upward into the ceiling; others swing outward but open inward first.
4 people like this.

Reply 13 - Posted by: Lonestar Jack 5/27/2023 11:53:10 AM (No. 1478713)
Number 9 -- we also had the presence of a jump masters #13 highly polished jumper's boot aimed at your posterior in you approached the door with your hands on the inside of the door rather than the outside. I know, as the guy in front of me indicated he was going to resist making an exit. He was rewarded with a D ring making a groove in his steel helmet due to the prop blast. He made a non-approved exit from a C-46 Curtis-Wright Commando (they couldn't feather the prop on this bird).
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