United Airlines Flight Plunged To 775 Feet Above Ocean Soon After Takeoff, Data Reveals

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Paul Aubert Contributor
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A United Airlines flight nearly dropped into the Pacific Ocean after taking off from a Maui airport in December 2022, according to flight data.

A Boeing 777-200, after climbing to 2,200 feet, suddenly plunged to just 775 feet above the Pacific Ocean, according to FlightRadar24, a flight tracking website. The incident occurred around a minute after United Airlines Flight UA 1722 departed from Kahului Airport in Maui and began heading toward San Francisco International Airport on Dec. 18.

The plane left Maui just before 3 p.m. and there was stormy weather at the time of takeoff, The Air Current reported. The aircraft’s climb appeared ordinary and safe before it suddenly dropped. The plane began dropping at a descent rate of nearly 8,600 feet per minute, according to the flight data.

After nearly plunging into the ocean, the aircraft successfully reverted course and maintained a safe and steady cruising altitude of 33,000 feet, and successfully landed in San Francisco.

The fall and rise of the aircraft happened over 45 seconds and the aircraft’s climb produced forces nearly 2.7 times the force of gravity on the plane and its passengers, the outlet noted.

On the same day, over two dozen passengers were injured on a flight from Phoenix to Honolulu, due to severe turbulence.

The United States faced extreme winter conditions just days later, and flights were canceled throughout the Christmas season. (RELATED: Travel Specialists Call Southwest ‘Meltdown’ The Worst ‘In Recent Memory’ As Cancellations Continue)