Travel journal “Travel Leisure” made the list of world most dangerous runways. Every tourist can one day appear in one of these places, so we consider it our duty to warn you to travel with your eyes wide open; you might never again see such things.
1. Paro Airport , Bhutan
All tourists wishing to visit Bhutan and walk on the ground of fire dragon, among the holy peaks of the Himalayas, arrive at Paro. Travelers risk their lives before visiting the kingdom. It’s the only airport in the kingdom surrounded by the Himalayan peaks reaching over 6000 meters. Only a most skillful pilot can keep the plane under full control and safely pass among the slopes surrounded by high trees and not get crashed or slammed into the mountain peaks and of course manage to get on the most dangerous runway of the world.
2. International Airport of Princess Juliana, St.Martin
Th airport of Princess Juliana is one of the biggest transport bends of the Caribbean region. The length of the runway here is only 2.180 meters. It’s enough for small and middle size aircrafts, but not for wide-body Boeing 747 and Airbus A340 with tourists regularly arriving at this airport.
The pilots have to descend the airplane in a way it touches the barrier of the runway. The runway starts straightly from the beach behind the barrier of the airport. So there is a double risk; who knows how the aircraft will land or what might fall from it.
3. Reagan National Airport, Washington DC, USA
Who could ever think such a huge airport would appear among the first three most dangerous runways in the world? This airport is located between 2 closed areas, that’s why pilots must be skillful enough to avoid strategically important objects — the Pentagon and the CIA headquarters. When ascending the aircraft must clear a height very fast and sharply turn to the left to avoid the White House. After the September 11 attacks security services strongly follow these rules. If the motion of the liner is doubtful, there is a big threat to the travelers’ life.
4. Airport of Gibraltar
Uptight between the Mediterranean sea and the Algeciras bay, the runway of 1.830 meters keeps pilots alert and makes them be very sharp and accurate. A highway to Spain intersects the runway. During the flight and the landing of the liners the road is exceeded with roadway gates and the police take care so that no reckless driver jumps out in front of the aircraft.
5. Runway in Matekane, Lesotho
The runway of 416 meters is located on the edges of a mountain canyon at the height of 2.303 meters. Tourists visiting Lesotho should know — if the aircraft begins falling straight after the fly, it’s not so dangerous. But there’s an increased risk if the aircraft is driven by an unskillful pilot trying to avoid the mountain. “The rule of the pilot in the mountains is as follows: better to fly downwind than upwind, as the mountains in Lesotho are stronger than pilots,” pilot Tom Clator says.
6. Airport of Barra, Scotland
The airport is located in a small island of Hebrides. It’s a shallow-water bay, on which aircrafts regularly land. The level of the “landing rigidity” depends on flows and low tide. So the pilots must be very attentive as they may get into a puddle.
7. Airport of Toncontin, Tegucigalpa, Honduras
To land successfully on Toncontin pilots must fly above the mountains and turn to the left at 45 degrees miter, before the aircraft touches the runway. The latter itself is not so long — 1.864 meters and is located in cotyloid valley. The airport built at the height of 1.005 meters above sea level cannot handle airliners bigger than Boeing 757. The airport is very close to houses, roads, restaurants and fueling stations. Do you remember what happened in Brazil in 2007? The liner rolled out from the runway and ran into the terminal station and burnt to the ground with passengers. This was a real tragedy and here we have equal possibilities of such tragedies.
8. John Kennedy International Airport, New York
Pilots arriving at this airport must be very attentive not to run into the aircrafts arriving at the two neighboring airports – La Guardia and Newark. Such a neighborhood makes pilots follow the upper limit of 4.575 meters and the visibility of 8.25 km before coming up to the runway 13L. The memory of what happened here in the year 1960 will hardly be blotted out — the aircraft United Airlines bumped into the liner TWA, the two aircrafts collapsed and 127 passengers died.
9. Airport of Madeira, Portugal
Pilots must approach the Madeira airport uptight between the mountains and the Atlantic Ocean, strongly clockwise. Pilots firstly turn the aircraft towards the mountains and at the last moment sharply turn to the right. The Portuguese have built one of the most extraordinary airports. The runway is not located on land, but in the air. The landingway of 2800 meters is built like a huge bridge and is located on 80 meter high 180 columns. There is a parking lot under the landingway and there is no free space.
10. Airport of Hwang Ho, Island of Saba, Dutch Antilles
This airport has the shortest runway of 396,5 meters. And another thing worth mentioning is that arriving at the airport pilots have to cope with strong winds, which carry and pose rather grave hazards.