Aboard Flight 292, Passengers Learned About Landing Gear Problem From MSNBC

By Brian 

The passengers on JetBlue Flight 292 included several NBC Universal employees who were returning to New York from Burbank meetings. Moments after the plane landed, passenger Todd Schwartz called his wife, MSNBC media relations director Leslie Zeller-Schwartz, and she patched him through to anchor Allison Stewart.

As the situation unfolded, “we actually were watching MSNBC,” he said. “We have the Direct TV’s on the flight.” A few minutes before landing, they turned off the TV’s.

Another NBC employee, Howard Averill, added: “I was watching the television. It was on MSNBC. And the coverage there kind of indicated — the coverage on television gave us a little bit more information than the pilot did, it felt like. Because you could actually see the pictures and watch the plane circling. That’s when it became apparent when it was on television that it was a lot more serious.”