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?