Passengers have different reports on the United plane that dove toward ocean

2 mins read

A United Airline flight departing for San Francisco back in December took a plunge over the Pacific Ocean, prompting the National Transportation Safety Board to investigate the incident. 

However, several passengers have different reports on the incident. 

On December 18, 2022, a United flight departed Hawaii amidst storm warnings. Shortly after its departure, the plane dove and came within 800 feet of the Pacific Ocean. The pilots were able to secure the flight after 45 seconds. 

Katya Gaidaeva was on United flight 1722 with her boyfriend and narrates that she was terrified during the dive. “The best analogy I can give for what that felt like is going skydiving,” she said. Gaidaeva says she couldn’t keep quiet during the fall, and that she wasn’t alone.

“I was screaming the loudest I have ever screamed during that fall…Passengers were screaming for about 20-30 seconds until we all felt like the plane stabilized and was no longer falling,” Gaidaeva said.

Ken Raymond and his wife were on the flight as well, but have different memories of the experience. “It was alarming but we heard no one scream. There was no dramatic climb,” he said. 

Rod Williams was with his family when the plane plunged down.“When you’re in an airplane like that and it’s going down, you hold tight to your faith, you hold tight to the things you trust and believe in,” he said.

Williams recalls feeling the intensity of the g-forces during the dive, “I mean you felt the pressure strongly in your head,” he said.

After the fall, one of the pilots came over the announcement system and said, “Nothing to worry about ladies and gentlemen, it’s just a few g-forces,” according to Gaidaeva.

Gaidaeva said when she spoke to a flight attendant after the fall, the flight attendant also said they had never experienced a dive like that. She says she is thankful the NTSB is investigating the flight, “It is scary to me that I found out how close the plane was to crashing two months after the incident,” she said.


Charlene is a Bay Area journalist who hails from the small community of Fresno. Drawing from her experience writing for her college paper, Charlene continues to advocate for free press and local journalism. She also volunteers in all the beach cleanups she can because she loves the water.