“The pilot being hailed as the Chesley (Sully) Sullenberger of Poland for miraculously crash-landing his packed airliner said Wednesday he feared the plane would tear apart as it skidded on its belly down a Warsaw runway.” —Daily News
With all due respect to Tadeusz Wrona, the Polish pilot who did a superb job not killing his passengers yesterday, you can’t just throw the Sully label around like that. Just as few talented basketball players deserve to be hailed as “the Next Michael Jordan,” or how few beautiful women deserve to be called “the Next Minka Kelly,” few hero-pilots deserve to be compared to Chesley Sullenberger, the ultimate hero-pilot philosopher-king. In fact …
The Top Three Reasons Why Tadeusz “Polish Sully” Wrona Is Not As Good As Chesley “Original Sully Flavor” Sullenberger
3. Emergency water landings are much rarer than belly landings. According to this probably reliable book we found on Google Books, Aviation Management: Global Perspectives, “belly landings are one of the most common types of aircraft accidents, and are normally not fatal if executed carefully.” The same book says that ditching in the water is “extremely rare for commercial passenger airlines.”
2. Polish Sully had over an hour to prepare himself and his crew for a (totally common; see No. 3) belly landing after discovering that his landing gear wasn’t functioning. Original Sully had only moments to act after a swarm of kamikaze geese destroyed his plane’s engines.