Santa SSLH at North Pole on Dec 24th 2017, sneezing engine

Last Update: December 24, 2017 / 09:33:36 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Dec 24, 2017


As usual Santa was preparing for Christmas deliveries, the annual FAA flight test was about to take place to demonstrate the sleigh and its engines are capable of safe flight, Santa was able to handle the sleigh safely and the flight data recorder, that had just been declared mandatory by the FAA, was working properly.

The sleigh was readied for the test, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder and Blixem propelling the sleigh as well as a 9th "red nosed reindeer equipped with supplemental safety and navigation gear", Rudolph, took their positions.

The FAA inspector, as every year, appeared. Santa looked at thim with a suspicious look and remembering the previous years looked a second time, then asked, "Where have you left your rifle this year?"

The inspector smiled and told Santa, "No need this year, yet, I am not supposed to tell, you are still going to lose an engine on takeoff, and you are going to breakdance today!"

The sleigh positioned onto the runway, the reindeer all pulled off with all their power, just before becoming airborne a muffled sound was heard from the direction of Dasher. Just when the sleigh had become airborne Dasher suddenly sneezed causing the sleigh to yaw and roll furiously, Santa applied rudder and steered the sleigh back into stable flight position, Dasher sneezed again and again and again forcing Santa to apply fancy footwork basically breakdancing on the rudder pedals and use all his airmanship to keep the sleigh airborne returning for an emergency landing back at the North Pole. Finally the sleigh touched down safely.

Immediately after the sleigh came to a stop Santa rushed forward to check out what's up with Dasher, who still sneezed again and again. Between two sneezes Santa managed to catch a glimpse of a bumble bee stuck in Dasher's nose, carefully removed the insect, Dasher sneezed a last time and sighed in relief. A borescopic inspection revealed no further damage.

The FAA inspector turned to Santa and said, "I told you so!"

An inspection of the runway and the area immediately past the runway as well as review of the new flight data recorder revealed the sleigh's right runner had briefly impacted the ground again at a high vertical acceleration of about +3.5G when Dasher had sneezed the first time. A hard landing inspection of the sleigh revealed a crack in the right runner. Both runners were replaced by carpenter elves.

The company taking care of Santa's public relations wrote: "Santa returned to the North Pole due to a very minor non-technical nuisance, which was quickly removed. Santa, the reindeers, the sleigh and your presents were safe at all times. Your presents are going to arrive on schedule."
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Dec 24, 2017


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