Rodd Hill: I like your sense of humor! Did you check the “Aviation Safety” page? Hope you like it.
Oblio: Let’s assume the most benign scenario (without pilots-passengers). The only “thing” missing in our scenario are the pilots, everything else (weather, systems, engines, etc.) works perfectly, ok?
Most modern commercial carriers are capable of performing automatic landings, and stop before the end of the runway. But a number of switches, levers, and instructions to the navigation and performance computers have to be activated, positioned, and selected in order to land safely. (Plus the knowledge of how to operate the aircraft’s particular two-way radio)
My guess is that your “average bug smasher driver” wouldn’t hold a chance landing a commercial carrier manually. But an autoland…? well… maybe.
If he manages to make contact with the Control Center, and they have an expert pilot available, and the aircraft has enough fuel to remain on the air while all the instructions and familiarization with cockpit is being done and continue its flight to an airport with the necessary facilities (an ILS is needed, without it, forget it!), I’d say that our “hero” has a good chance to make it.
I shouldn’t take more “post space”, but here’s a rough list of the actions that need to be taken:
*set runway to be used (in the computer)
*set approach procedure
*set performance data
*set altitude (continuous changes through all the procedure)
*set auto/capture (for the ILS)
*set landing gear
*set braking system
*apply reverse thrust once on the ground
*apply parking brakes once fully stopped
*shot engines down
Phew!!! I got tired.
Obviously all this would be easier for a trained Commercial Pilot. But I decide to have you as the “hero”.
And if you can make it, I’ll personally see that you log it as PIC!