Southwest Grounds Pilots Who Landed at Wrong Airport

Boeing 737 lands at smaller airport 6 miles away.

County Branson Airport Runway

County Branson Airport Runway

** Branson Airport (Google Earth)**

The pilots of a Southwest Airlines 737 that mistakenly landed at the wrong airport near Branson, Missouri, won't be flying again anytime soon pending an internal and FAA investigation into the incident, according to the airline.

The Southwest 737-700 departed Chicago Midway Airport on Sunday bound for the 7,140-foot runway at Branson Airport, but landed at about 6:25 p.m. on the much shorter Runway 12 at M. Graham Clark Downtown Airport 6 nm to the north. The pilots had to brake hard to avoid going off the end of the 3,738-foot runway, where there is a steep embankment leading down to a highway.

Passengers were bussed to the Branson Airport, and the 737 was flown out of Clark Airport on Monday afternoon. The captain has 15 years of experience with Southwest while the copilot has been flying for 13 years, according to the airline.

This is the second high-profile incident in recent months involving an airplane landing at the wrong destination. In November an Atlas Air 747 Dreamlifter cargo plane landed at Jabara Airport near Wichita after the crew mistook it for McConnell Air Force Base.

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