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Pilot mistakenly called in hijacking, plane forced back to JFK terminal

A JetBlue pilot accidentally reported that his plane was being hijacked at JFK, triggering a massive response of cops and firefighters who surrounded the craft on the tarmac, officials said. ( More...

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Pa Thomas 7
The real news is there was a total radio failure on an Airbus......
Highflyer1950 7
Of course the pilot could have picked his smart phone and typed in and then entered JFK, retrieved the tower telephone number and called them....but then I’m old school!
Colin Seftel -6
That wouldn't work because the URL is
Highflyer1950 10
I’m pretty sure even a smart person like you could have figured out a typing error and miss the whole point of the post.
bentwing60 2
It's O.K HF, I don't know which logbook you retired on, but mine was #4 and they still know more than we do.
Highflyer1950 3
Well that’s a coincidence, I’m #4 as well, with about 20 pages to the end. We sure had fun!
bentwing60 0
Yes, we did!
lk2855 9
Likely squawked 7500 (Hijacking) rather than 7600 (Communications Failure). The difference a digit makes.
Graeme Smith 5
Yeah - putting NORDO next to HiJack always seemed to be asking for trouble. Especially with rotary knob transponders. You have to think carefully about which way to turn the knob.

Bigger question - Was the plane in the movement or non-movement area of the airport? Because the display of transponders tied to the surveillance radar on the airport ASDE-X are usually suppressed in the non-movement areas. (At least at any airport towers I'm familiar with). So if the plane was in the non-movement area - does 7500/7600/7700 over-ride the suppressed return?
STARS Would have alerted in the tower even if ASDE was filtering them due to location.
royr2 2
That's exactly what he did.
R T Sands 3
Looking around Airbus cockpit in my head, I see 3 VHF comms wired to 2 antennaes,acars to dispatch, 2 HF's, dispatch phone number on the release and 6 crewmembers cell phones,and a cabin full of pax who each have a phone. No way to communicate except xponder? You can order pizza and deliver it to the cockpit with that amount of communication devices.
Guy Cocoa 9
But if you’re in the air the delivery charge might be a little on the high side.
Related, with all the digital controlled transponders now, do they still teach student pilots not to ‘scroll’ through 7500, 7600 and 7700 when setting the transponder?
SamArnold 4
We were always taught to turn the xpndr to Standby when changing the number, then back to ALT once it's set.
That does seem more sensible in one regard.

I did a search and found people talking about scrolling avoidance, and also those talking about Standby. So, I was not the only one that remembered it as scrolling avoidance.

The reason I say it makes more sense doing Standby is that someone scrolling could also pass through the transponder code assigned to another even if they avoided the 7700, 7600, etc.
That explains the response. Waiting for the ATC from this one. Could imagine Kennedy Steve on this one.
simstick 2
I imagine it was transponder code if they were having radio trouble.
Bob Keeping 1
Le's see 7600 - 7700 oh - wait a minute - I'll call on the radio - nope that doesn't work - oh well - close enough
dvet13 1
Surprised this doesn't happen more frequently
royr2 1
Give it a week, I bet he blames the transponder's faulty knobs/buttons.
ADXbear 1
Oppps... careful.inputing numbers
SamArnold 1
Isn't it standard practice to turn the transponder to SBY when changing the numbers so you don't accidentally squawk an emergency number, or even another aircraft's code?
We were always taught to turn the xpndr to Standby when changing the number, then back to ALT once it's set.
dbaker 3
In modern airplanes, you just type in the code on a keypad.


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