Benedict Sliney: The Man Who Grounded All Planes on 9/11

Category: Airport, Aviation, Emergency
Last Updated: 30 Mar 2023
Pages: 5 Views: 252

Benedict Sliney was the National Operations Manager for the Federal Aviation Administration on the 11th September in the year 2001. On that day, he was working at the Command Center located in Herndon Virginia. This was his first day as the manager and the gentle man was on a promotion. He had previously worked at the Air Traffic Control since the year 1964. Ben Sliney is the lawyer who at one time in the place of the Air Traffic System had sued the FAA. On the 11th September, Ben was the one who primarily gave the order that all the planes stateside be grounded.

Ben made this decision to have the United States air space closed. Private and commercial planes were forced by his orders to land or they would have to remain grounded. Ben did this on his own, even without the consent of President George W. Bush . Very few people could have had the competence and courage to take that bold step and make such an important decision on their own without anxiety and needing affirmation from their seniors or colleagues. On this day, Ben Sliney interrupted the daily meeting by the senior staff at the command center of FAA in Herndon, Virginia.

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The manager was giving a report that there could have been a possible planned hijacking that could have been progressing at that moment. The command center had come to learned that Flight 11 had been hijacked approximately two minutes prior. During this time that Ben Sliney was making his report, a certain supervisor interrupted the same meeting claiming that there was a chance or even a probability that one flight attendant on the allegedly hijacked plane could have been stabbed. This meeting was then spontaneously broken up a few minutes before the very first crash of the WTC.

This happened at exactly forty six minutes after eight o’clock in the morning. At this time no one who had attended the meeting made the effort to contact NORAD. At 9:42, the center came to learn from the local television reports that a certain plane had just struck the United States Pentagon. During the next few minutes, at around 9:45 am, the FAA was given the final order by Ben to have all the civil aircraft land at any closest airport within the shortest time possible. It was reported that the approximate number of planes that were flying in US was 4; 452. This was the decision that carried the day.

Ben Sliney, on his own and being his first day as manager made the decision to have all the planes land. This order was quite unprecedented. The traffic control system however managed to handle the order competently and with a lot of skill. All the 4,500 general aviation and commercial aircrafts landed moments latter without any reported incidents. I identify with Ben Sliney because he is a very experienced person who knows the requirements of his job as a manager. A manager is supposed to take charge of his department and give orders or advice to the juniors.

Ben Sliney applied the principles of management effectively, a factor that contributed to the successful landing of all the 4,500 planed that were on air on that day in the US. He is a competent manager who is very decisive and accurate. Being the person in charge of traffic control, Ben within no time was able to plan for the emergency. On receiving the news of the hijacked plane, he did not hesitate but went strait to organize on the next step with the senior staff that was having the daily morning meeting at the command center.

There was no time to sit down and strategize on the next course of action since the next piece of information suspecting that a staff member on the hijacked plane could have been stabbed. Despite the nature of information, which was rather intense, Ben calmly and urgently acted just like a manager should. He effectively and efficiently within no time directed the rest of the traffic control staff to make the necessary arrangements and urgently prepare for the emergency landing of the planes on board. The planes were meant to land at the nearest port possible.

Ben was doing all this for the safety of the passengers on board as well as the crew. I am professionally aspired by the then FAA’s manager for National Operations. This is because on his very firs day as manager in a very sensitive department, he single mindedly managed to bring down all the planes on air at the time of the hijacking. Being his first day as manager, he was very confident and he knew exactly what to and when to do it and even how to do it. He aspires me because he turned out to be a very effective manager.

In addition, Ben did not make any consultations because the time and the circumstances did not allow it. He used all the experience he had gained at his previous position before getting the promotion to bring order and avoid chaos. He successfully did this and all the staff at the FAA will never forget the toughest decision that one of their own had to take. Ben has inspired me to be confident in the strong professional decisions that I have to take and especially being in a senior management position. The following lessons have been learned from the Ben Sliney decision.

• Quickly plan for emergencies without having to get the rest of the people anxious, • Organize all the necessary arrangements to ensure that the laid plans fall in place respectively. • Direct the senior staff to carry out the plans collectively as a team • Coordinate the activities of the people to ensure that within the shortest time possible, they are harmoniously working to the attainment of the objective within the shortest time possible. I agree with the decision and immediate actions taken by Ben Sliney on that material day.

There was not enough time to make elaborate consultations and arrive at a unanimous decision from all the senior personnel. Ben quickly did what he could have done at that moment to save the situation. In my opinion, Ben took the best decision by not risking the lives of thousands of passengers who were on board alongside the cabin crew. By not taking time to consult, the operations manager saved time to handle the rest of the issues. He put plans in place to have all the planes land. This work well and demonstrated his efficiency since all the planes landed without any incidences.

Being in his position, I would have done taken the same measures to bring calm to the Federal Aviation Administration in the midst of such an emergency that could have spread a panic arrest to the United States in general and FAA in particular. Conclusion In a nut shell, the decision taken by Ben Sliney on the 9/11 to bring down all the private as well as commercial planes flying above the United States was remarkable. It took a lot of courage to do what the manager did to save the situation. References

Retrieved from, Ben Sliney, was the National Operations Manager for the FAA on September 11 http://baylink. pitas. com/ Accessed on 14th November, 2007. Retrieved from, Sept. 11 is Sliney’s first day on the job as national operations manager, http://my. metafilter. com/ Accessed on Accessed on 14th November, 2007. Retrieved from, Mr. Benedict Sliney, http://www. sfgate. com/ Accessed on Accessed on 14th November, 2007. Retrieved from, Ben Sliney, www. findarticles. com/ Accessed on Accessed on 14th November, 2007.

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Benedict Sliney: The Man Who Grounded All Planes on 9/11. (2016, Jul 28). Retrieved from

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