Chapter 4 – Low over Renton

One adventure I had while flying the 707 was to fly a 707 from Boeing field in Seattle to the Renton airport. It had to be returned to Renton because that was where the paint hanger was, and it needed a paint touch up.

The weather was marginal, broken clouds at 1000 feet. Renton airport is short for a 707. The length of the runway is 6000 feet. Its ok landing to the south. The approach is over Lake Washington with no obstacles. But coming in from the south is not good. There is blast fence at the south end which must be cleared. Also there is a hospital south of the airport which is noise sensitive. For some reason Sandy pushed me to get the 707 over to Renton. Considering the wind and the weather, and I didn’t think it was a good idea, the landing would have to be to the north, past the hospital and over the blast fence.

I began to think about it. The weather began to get better. So I thought I could get an instrument clearance and sneak in from the south.

I called air traffic control to see if I could get an instrument clearance so I could sneak in from the south. They were against that idea. In the meantime, the weather got clear so I decided to go VFR. I landed at Renton to the North. The next day my boss, Sandy, told me he was on the phone all morning talking to air traffic control about my landing. I guess it was very noisy. The next morning I happened to have a dentist appointment whose office is in Renton. He confirmed I had made a lot of noise. Also made the papers.

I think air traffic should have let me sneak in from the south. I could have come in a little high and throttled back and coasted in.

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