In the rainy early morning hours of Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017 – about six hours before Hurricane Irma churned into the lower Florida Keys as a Category 4 storm – 62 flight instructors at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University piloted a fleet of small airplanes to two locations in Alabama.
The pilots, navigating 44 Cessna 172, 9 multi-engine Diamond 42, 8 Piper Arrow, and 1 Beechcraft Baron aircraft through a thick band of rain, were grateful to be hosted by Auburn University and Atlantic Aviation.
A new video, created by David Nixon, conveys the urgency and complexity of Embry-Riddle's fleet relocation effort right before Hurricane Irma made landfall at Cudjoe Key on the morning of Sept. 10.
The fleet relocation was only one of the many steps that Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach, Fla., campus took before Hurricane Irma made its U.S. landfall. The top priority of the emergency operations team was to ensure the safety of students first, and then to safeguard infrastructure, equipment and aircraft so that students would be able to quickly return to campus and normal operations following the storm.Read about the mass evacuation in Flying magazine.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world’s largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, is a nonprofit, independent institution offering more than 80 baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its colleges of Arts & Sciences, Aviation, Business, Engineering and Security & Intelligence. Embry-Riddle educates students at residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Fla., and Prescott, Ariz., through the Worldwide Campus with more than 125 locations in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and through online programs. The university is a major research center, seeking solutions to real-world problems in partnership with the aerospace industry, other universities and government agencies. For more information, visit erau.edu, follow us on Twitter (@EmbryRiddle) and facebook.com/EmbryRiddleUniversity, and find expert videos at YouTube.com/EmbryRiddleUniv.