O'Hare ATC Live Engine Failure - ATC Declares Emergency for 747 Giant 551 Heavy

Watch (See) the ATC conversation here

CHICAGO, Illinois – On Thursday, 2 January 2020, an Atlas Air Boeing 747-400 Flight 5Y-551 (Giant 551 Heavy) from New York’s JFK airport to Chicago O’Hare was in the initial descent through FL320 towards Chicago when the crew reported they just had to shut down their number 2 engine. They did not declare an emergency. ATC told the crew they declared an emergency for them instead. The aircraft landed safely on Chicago’s runway 28C about 40 minutes after reporting the engine failure.

Is it normal for ATC to declare the emergency in lieu of the pilot?


A very interesting listen.


ATC has the authority to declare an emergency if they feel like the plane needs help or the crew is incompetent to declare one for themselves. Once ATC declares the emergency for the crew, the crew cannot argue.

1 Like

This post was flagged by the AFC and is hidden.

Wow. I landed in O’Hare that day. Never saw anything though.