Air Pressure One visited Seattle and we have been there

Air Pressure One approaching the ramp at SEA

It’s arguably probably the most iconic livery on probably the most iconic plane in service. It’s blue-and-white livery is immediately identifiable to each AvGeeks and people who view planes as merely flying buses.

Formally designated the VC-25 by the U.S. Air Pressure, two heavily-modified Boeing 747-200s have been in service since 1990.

Air Force One moments from landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
Air Pressure One moments from touchdown at Seattle-Tacoma Worldwide Airport

By now, most AvGeeks know that any plane may be designated as Air Pressure One – the callsign is simply energetic if the president is on board. Thus the modified 757s (formally C-32As) may also carry the callsign when the president is aboard.

The Seattle space sees C-32As pretty commonly, as high-ranking officers apart from the president typically go to the area, such because the vp. The VC-25 hasn’t been in these components since 2018, and we final wrote a few go to right here in 2015, so we have been due for an replace.

An Air Force officer watches intently as the air stairs are brought up to Air Force One
An Air Pressure officer watches intently because the air stairs are introduced as much as Air Pressure One

The arrival and departure are often arrange as media alternatives for native press retailers, and that’s how we have been in a position to cowl the occasions. Press releases are distributed and screening purposes made accessible. As soon as accredited by the White Home Press Workplace, credentials are issued, and also you then flip up on the appointed location a number of hours prematurely for bodily screening by the Secret Service.

After an intensive inspection of individuals and gear, we have been escorted to the press space on the airfield, which usually is one thing like a parked 40-foot flatbed trailer, accessed by way of a set of picket stairs, that’s fenced off and intently watched by extra Secret Service people.

The flatbed trailer/medial platform – it’s open to the weather, and all of us bought soaked whereas ready, however that’s all a part of the sport

On this go to, the president departed by way of motorcade, driving in considered one of a pair of limos nicknamed “The Beast.” Each are the identical, proper all the way down to the matching license plates.

A Secret Service agent closes the door of the presidential limo in entrance of Air Pressure One

The subsequent morning, the president was slated to reach at SEA by way of Marine One, an MV-22 Osprey that’s been modified for VIP transport. This was, for me, probably the most thrilling half as I’ve solely seen the president depart and arrive by way of motorcade – this could be tremendous enjoyable.

Alas, it didn’t go to plan. A safety incident (principally, somebody on the close by food-service enterprise that serves the airways left a rice cooker on the again seat of their automotive within the car parking zone) triggered an enormous disruption to each the president’s departure and to SEA air site visitors normally. The president left about an hour late. The SEA site visitors points took a number of hours to clear.

The consequence for the departure was that Air Pressure One was rapidly moved away from the ramp to some extent on the runway midfield, together with the entire assorted escort autos following behind. The Ospreys and accompanying Blackhawks landed on a taxiway adjoining to the 747, and everybody boarded there. The jet departed straight from that location, having parked on the runway.

Air Force One was quickly moved from the press area because of a security threat
Air Pressure One was rapidly moved from the press space due to a safety menace

Aside from loads of inconvenience for SEA vacationers, some briefly stressed-out safety people and a few disillusioned journalists, the president safely departed, albeit from the center of the airfield, just about out of sight of everybody save for the individuals taking care of him and touring with him.

Marine One lands on a midfield taxiway at SEA
Marine One lands on a midfield taxiway at SEA

It’s by no means a uninteresting day when a sitting president pays a go to. Right here’s hoping for one more go to comparatively quickly, this time with none weirdness.

EDITOR-AT-LARGE / LEAD PHOTOGRAPHER – SEATTLE, WA Francis Zera is a Seattle-based architectural, aerial, aviation, and business photographer, a contract photojournalist, and a confirmed AvGeek.

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