American Airlines Takes the Scenic Route from Colombia to Miami

Sep 18, 2017

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Ralph Waldo Emerson mused: “Life is a journey, not a destination.” Based on the flight track below, one might think that the pilots of American Airlines flight 1126 took this quote to heart when flying this flight Saturday evening. The flight took the “scenic route” from Bogota (BOG) to Miami (MIA).

Not surprisingly, there’s a very precise reason for this long routing. The aircraft was grounded for technical issues in Bogota. Although the mechanics gave the aircraft clearance to return to Miami (MIA), American Airlines planned the route so the aircraft didn’t veer far from diversion airports. This becomes clear when you overlay the Caribbean airports on the route map:

AA1126 with airport dots

Originally scheduled for Friday night, AA1126 departed BOG after 3pm Saturday, over 15 hours after its scheduled departure time. With the longer flight time, the flight would end up arriving nearly 17 hours after its scheduled arrival time. Unfortunately for connecting passengers, this meant that they arrived late Saturday night instead of 4:40am Saturday morning, perhaps forcing another overnight stay in MIA after having to spend a night in BOG due to the departure delay.

The typically 3:15-hour flight time was stretched to 5:13 hours in the air with this new routing. The Airbus A319 (registration N9017P) was able to make the journey without a fueling stop along the way, even if it flew 2,786 miles instead of a typical 1,514 miles. While that seems long, a fully loaded Airbus A319 would have still had another 1,500 miles in the tanks.

Interested in analyzing the longer-than-expected flight AA1126? Here’s the FlightRadar24 track.

Featured image captured on FlightRadar24.

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