The Incredible Tale of the Miracle on the Hudson

In 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 was scheduled to fly from New York City to Charlotte, North Carolina. However, shortly after takeoff, the plane hit a flock of geese, causing both engines to fail. The pilots quickly realized that they couldn’t make it to any nearby airports, so they decided to attempt an emergency landing in the Hudson River.

The passengers were understandably terrified, but the crew remained calm and helped everyone evacuate the plane safely. Within minutes of the landing, ferries and rescue boats arrived to help the passengers and crew to safety.

The event, which became known as the “Miracle on the Hudson”, was widely covered by the media and praised for the bravery and quick thinking of the pilots and crew. All 155 people on board the flight survived, and the pilots were hailed as heroes for their actions.

Following the incident, the pilots, Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger and First Officer Jeffrey Skiles, testified before Congress and called for more training and better safety regulations for pilots.

The story of Flight 1549 serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of preparedness and quick thinking in emergency situations, as well as the importance of following safety regulations to ensure the safety of passengers and crew.


  • flock: a group of birds flying together
  • engines: the machines that power a vehicle such as a plane
  • emergency landing: a landing made by a plane in a situation where the pilot decides that it is necessary to land as soon as possible, rather than continuing to fly to an airport
  • evacuate: to leave a place quickly and safely
  • ferries: boats that transport people or vehicles across a body of water
  • hailed: praised or celebrated for doing something well
  • testify: to give evidence or speak in court or before a committee of lawmakers
  • preparedness: the state of being ready or prepared for something, especially an emergency situation.
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About The Story

  1. Where was US Airways Flight 1549 scheduled to fly to?
  2. What happened to the plane shortly after takeoff?
  3. How did the pilots respond to the emergency situation?
  4. What did the crew do to help the passengers during the emergency landing?
  5. What happened after the plane landed in the Hudson River?
  6. How did the media respond to the incident?
  7. What did people call the event that happened to Flight 1549?
  8. What was the outcome for all 155 people on board the flight?
  9. What did the pilots call for after the incident?
  10. What does the story of Flight 1549 teach us about emergency situations and safety regulations?

About You

  1. Have you ever been in a stressful situation where you needed to remain calm and think quickly? What did you do?
  2. Do you believe in miracles? If so, what is an example of a miracle that you have witnessed or heard about?
  3. Who is someone you consider to be a hero in your life? What qualities do they possess that make them a hero?
  4. Can you think of a time when the media coverage of an event you experienced was different from your own personal experience?
  5. Do you think emergency response organizations should be funded more heavily? Why or why not?
  6. When was a time you had to help someone during a stressful or emergency situation?
  7. Have you ever been on a boat or ferry ride? What was your experience like?
  8. What is a crisis that you believe the world needs to address more urgently? What do you think should be done to address it?
  9. Have you ever experienced a natural disaster? How did you cope with the aftermath?