air travel

Watch these videos of crosswind landings by planes. You'll know why everyone loves them

It's exciting but not as dangerous as it looks.

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One of the latest videos to go viral on YouTube is one showing a Boeing 737-430 trying to land at Václav Havel Airport in Prague, Czech Republic. On the first attempt, because of too much wind, the pilot realises that a perfect landing might not be possible. So the plane turns around and makes a second, successful attempt.

Every few months a video like this goes viral. On October 1, a similar video of a pilot making two attempts to land received two million views.

In 2015, YouTuber Cargospotter had uploaded a similar video of a plane swaying as it landed because of windy conditions. “I have filmed lots of crosswind landings within the past four years but this was the first time I was able to film an A380 crosswind landing,” Cargospotter wrote in the description of the video. “All crosswind landings are amazing but seeing an A380 fighting against the wind was something special. In addition to that the runway was very wet and the A380 touched down a little late.”

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The video sharing site has thousands of videos depicting similar scenes.

One of the most popular among these has received 30 million views after it was shared in 2014. The video collected various takeoffs and landings in awkward weather conditions during a record winter for stormy conditions at the Birmingham Airport in the United Kingdom, which has become a popular location to shoot these videos.

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While the videos frequently go viral because of the perceived danger of the landing, that is not the actual reality.

In a column in USA Today, retired airline captain John Cox explained that while crosswinds make it challenging for pilots, it isn’t dangerous:

Landing in a strong, gusty crosswind is challenging. This skill is one that all professional pilots must master early in their careers. Every airplane has a crosswind limit that pilots respect. Judgment is essential to determine when the conditions are too severe to safely land. It can be difficult, but good judgment keeps it from being dangerous.

Another former pilot chose a few crosswind videos and explained what happened in each and wrote:

Depending on the conditions, the type of airplane, and the pilot, you are likely to encounter any of the above techniques when you travel by air. The technique and the quality will vary, but one thing is for certain, the majority of the takeoffs and landings will be in crosswind conditions.

A scientific study published earlier this year claimed that instances of more severe turbulence were set to increase and that air travel would become more expensive as a result of climate change.

So expect more viral videos and more uncomfortable flights.

Corrections and Clarifications: An earlier version of this article stated that Prague was located in Czechoslovakia. It is actually located in the Czech Republic.

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Changing the conversation around mental health in rural India

Insights that emerged from discussions around mental health at a village this World Mental Health Day.

Questioning is the art of learning. For an illness as debilitating as depression, asking the right questions is an important step in social acceptance and understanding. How do I open-up about my depression to my parents? Can meditation be counted as a treatment for depression? Should heartbreak be considered as a trigger for deep depression? These were some of the questions addressed by a panel consisting of the trustees and the founder of The Live Love Lough Foundation (TLLLF), a platform that seeks to champion the cause of mental health. The panel discussion was a part of an event organised by TLLLF to commemorate World Mental Health Day.

According to a National Mental Health Survey of India 2015-16, conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), common mental disorders including depression, anxiety disorders and substance use disorders affect nearly 10% of the population, with 1 in 20 people in India suffering from depression. The survey reported a huge treatment gap, a problem that is spread far and wide across urban and rural parts of the country.

On 10th of October, trustees of the foundation, Anna Chandy, Dr. Shyam Bhat and Nina Nair, along with its founder, Deepika Padukone, made a visit to a community health project centre in Devangere, Karnataka. The project, started by The Association of People with Disability (APD) in 2010, got a much-needed boost after partnering with TLLLF 2 years ago, helping them reach 819 people suffering from mental illnesses and spreading its program to 6 Taluks, making a difference at a larger scale.

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During the visit, the TLLLF team met patients and their families to gain insights into the program’s effectiveness and impact. Basavaraja, a beneficiary of the program, spoke about the issues he faced because of his illness. He shared how people used to call him mad and would threaten to beat him up. Other patients expressed their difficulty in getting access to medical aid for which they had to travel to the next biggest city, Shivmoga which is about 2 hours away from Davangere. A marked difference from when TLLLF joined the project two years ago was the level of openness and awareness present amongst the villagers. Individuals and families were more expressive about their issues and challenges leading to a more evolved and helpful conversation.

The process of de-stigmatizing mental illnesses in a community and providing treatment to those who are suffering requires a strong nexus of partners to make progress in a holistic manner. Initially, getting different stakeholders together was difficult because of the lack of awareness and resources in the field of mental healthcare. But the project found its footing once it established a network of support from NIMHANS doctors who treated the patients at health camps, Primary Healthcare Centre doctors and the ASHA workers. On their visit, the TLLLF team along with APD and the project partners discussed the impact that was made by the program. Were beneficiaries able to access the free psychiatric drugs? Did the program help in reducing the distance patients had to travel to get treatment? During these discussions, the TLLLF team observed that even amongst the partners, there was an increased sense of support and responsiveness towards mental health aid.

The next leg of the visit took the TLLLF team to the village of Bilichodu where they met a support group that included 15 patients and caregivers. Ujjala Padukone, Deepika Padukone’s mother, being a caregiver herself, was also present in the discussion to share her experiences with the group and encouraged others to share their stories and concerns about their family members. While the discussion revolved around the importance of opening up and seeking help, the team brought about a forward-looking attitude within the group by discussing future possibilities in employment and livelihood options available for the patients.

As the TLLLF team honoured World Mental Health day, 2017 by visiting families, engaging with support groups and reviewing the successes and the challenges in rural mental healthcare, they noticed how the conversation, that was once difficult to start, now had characteristics of support, openness and a positive outlook towards the future. To continue this momentum, the organisation charted out the next steps that will further enrich the dialogue surrounding mental health, in both urban and rural areas. The steps include increasing research on mental health, enhancing the role of social media to drive awareness and decrease stigma and expanding their current programs. To know more, see here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of The Live Love Laugh Foundation and not by the Scroll editorial team.