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332 MPH fly-by at 28 feet in a Boeing 777-300ER  (Source: Liem Bahneman)

First comes the champagne, then comes the axe.  (Source: Telegraph)
Cathay Pacific pilot fired for 28 foot fly-by in a brand new Boeing 777-300ER

When it comes to American commercial airliners, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner has received the majority of the press for the past two years. The 787 uses advanced engines and composite materials to achieve remarkable fuel economy for an aircraft its size.

However, the older Boeing 777-300ER is making news due to the actions of one daring pilot. Captain Ian Wilkinson decided to make the most of the maiden voyage of the Cathay Pacific 777-300ER by showing off the capabilities of the aircraft.

Captain Wilkinson made a 332 MPH pass of the airport control tower at a height of just 28 feet. Onboard the aircraft were Cathay Pacific airline executives who were "stunned into silence", while on the ground stood cheering ground crew.

"We heard afterwards he was asked to do a fly-by of the factory and decided to give them a flight they would never forget," said one Cathay Pacific inside. "But why he chose to do it with the chairman on board is anyone's guess."

Passengers and the flight crew of the brand new 777-300ER toasted Captain Wilkinson with champagne after the fly-by. That might have been the end of the event if it weren’t for the Internet -- a video of the low fly-by found its way to YouTube and Wilkinson soon was suspended, and then later fired for his actions.

"If no one else had found out about it, the incident would probably have gone no further, but once it began circulating on the internet and Hong Kong's Civil Aviation Authority got hold of it, that was the end of him," said a senior pilot for Cathay Pacific.

Captain Wilkinson, who has lived in Hong Kong for the past 15 years, is said to be considering an appeal of his termination -- considering that Wilkinson was pulling down nearly $500,000 USD a year as a pilot, it a near certainty that he will go through with the appeal.

"Wilkinson was showing off, and most of the pilots might be sympathetic, but they feel that he got what he deserved when he was sacked," added Cathay Pacific senior pilot who wished to remain nameless.

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RE: Good show.
By ikkeman on 2/25/2008 5:39:48 PM , Rating: -1
The man should be charged with criminal charges. Endangering the groundcrew, the passengers and the poeple living close. Also endangering a 250 milliion investment, he should have gotten a fine on top of his termination.

Idiot Pilots...

RE: Good show.
By Mitch101 on 2/25/2008 6:20:30 PM , Rating: 5
on the ground stood cheering ground crew

In your view I guess they were screaming for their lives not cheering him on.

RE: Good show.
By ikkeman on 2/26/08, Rating: -1
RE: Good show.
By 91TTZ on 2/26/2008 1:15:11 PM , Rating: 2
WOW, what a coward.

RE: Good show.
By sporr on 2/27/2008 2:07:05 PM , Rating: 1
He did a low fly by................

NOT a Pugachev's Cobra.

There's taking things out of hand and then there's THIS.

RE: Good show.
By Ryanman on 2/28/2008 3:01:17 PM , Rating: 1
I was checking out the dictionary a couple days ago, and under "self-rigteous fearful Jackass" I saw your picture. Might wanna check up on that.

RE: Good show.
By xti on 2/26/2008 3:45:45 PM , Rating: 3
dont worry, the ground crew consists of 1 WAHmbulance.

RE: Good show.
By 306maxi on 2/27/2008 3:45:10 PM , Rating: 2
LOL that's the funniest thing I've read today.

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