A Northwest Airlines jet carrying 144 passengers overshot its destination and lost ground contact for an hour because the two pilots both lost their concentration as they engaged in a robust debate over company policy. Very similar to when I am driving on the freeway and me and my wife or kids get into a discussion and I miss my exit. Oh, except I am not piloting 100’s of tons of flying metal at 37,000 feet and responsible for the lives of 144 people. And, by the way, when I miss my exit, neither US Air Force jets are scrambled nor is my car boarded by a SWAT team when I finally arrive at my destination. Other than that… its a very similar experience.
NWA wonders if fatigue played a role? Fatigue my rear-end! Maybe the guys who landed their jet in Atlanta on the wrong runway were a little tired. For these guys, sleepyness is the least of their problems.