I was on UA 799 last night from ORD to EWR. The crew piped the ATC radio through the headsets, and I listened to the last 45 minutes of the flight.
As we were in the approach, something felt odd about the way we were lining up. I am not a pilot, but I fly into newark a lot, and it felt like we were too close to manhattan, and making too many turns at the last minute, when we were really, really low. I started to get a little nervous.
As we're making a low, low sweeping turn, the tower came on the radio and said something like "799, you are very low and 2.5 miles out. Can you see the airport?". The pilot replied "No". Then either the pilot informed the tower that we were going to go around and try again, or the tower told the pilot to go around. I don't really remember because my heart was going about 150 BPM at that point.
Anyway, I looked this morning at our flight path - http://flightaware.com/live/flight/UAL799
- looks like we got very low and slow (400 ft, 148kts) before pulling out.
Just curious if anyone has a recording of this from last night. It was a pretty intense experience and I'd like to listen to it again.
The pilots later complained to the tower / approach about that approach being unsafe, and ATC replied that "a lot of other planes have made it without a problem."
Finally, regardless of whether it was pilot error or unsafe approach that caused this, I'd like to commend the atc and crew for keeping it together and getting us on the ground safely 20 minutes later.