October 27, 2016, New York City, NY Shortly before 8:00 PM, a difficult landing in challenging weather conditions turned potentially disastrous as a charter Eastern Airlines Boeing 737 carrying Vice Presidential candidate Mike Pence, family members, staffers, press corps and 11 crew members lost braking control upon landing on rain-soaked Runway 22.
The Zodiac Arresting Systems EMASMAX® Engineered Material Arresting System (EMAS) engaged the undercarriage of the aircraft, bringing it to a safe, controlled stop after the aircraft lost traction and slid into the overrun area of the runway. News footage worldwide showed Governor Pence and all other passengers exiting the aircraft with no injuries.
Zodiac Arresting Systems’ EMASMAX® is the only EMAS that has safely stopped aircraft at commercial airports in actual emergency overrun events. With this arrestment, EMASMAX® extended its perfect safety record to 11 successful arrestments with a combined total of 293 passengers on board. EMASMAX® flawless performance has gained the confidence of airport operators worldwide who have installed EMASMAX® systems on 113 airport runway overrun areas at 68 airports. EMASMAX® is a specially designed and developed bed of lightweight cellular concrete specifically engineered to each application to stop each airport’s unique fleet mix. EMASMAX® predictably deforms under the wheels of an aircraft’s weight, providing predictable drag to safely stop the aircraft within airport boundaries. EMASMAX® prevents potential catastrophic overruns at airports where Runway Safety Areas (RSA), normally 1,000 feet in length, can be insufficient due to space constraints, environmental conditions or other factors.
Zodiac Arresting Systems developed its patented EMASMAX® technology in the mid-1990s as part of a cooperative effort with the FAA and Port Authority of NY & NJ. In 1996, the product was proven to perform as required in live aircraft testing at the FAA Test Center in Pomona, NJ safely stopping a Boeing 727 aircraft with crew and passengers on board. LaGuardia Airport became an early adopter of EMASMAX® technology, investing in the installation of 4 EMASMAX® systems on runway overrun areas to protect against potentially catastrophic aircraft overruns.
Zodiac Arresting Systems continues to introduce aircraft and airport safety accident prevention solutions to improve safety. Zodiac Arresting Systems recently introduced “Runway Condition Assessment Matrix” (RCAM) training, an interactive e-training program that consists of general and duty specific knowledge via training modules that detail how to properly perform runway condition reporting and provide consistent and accurate assessment methodologies. The training material is based on the “Takeoff and Landing Performance Assessment (TALPA) Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC)” information and current FAA guidance on the proper application of the RCAM. Zodiac Arresting Systems’ RCAM Training Program is designed specifically to comprehensively improve operational safety via thorough training of pilots and airport, airline and air traffic control personnel.
EMASMAX® is manufactured in the USA by Zodiac Arresting Systems at its commercial products facility in Logan Township, NJ. Zodiac Arresting Systems is also the global leader in military arrestment systems, manufactured in Aston, PA. Zodiac Arresting Systems has developed arrestment products and systems for critical vehicle types and applications for over 70 years. Zodiac Arresting Systems is a subsidiary of Zodiac Aerospace.