A video purports to show the moment a truck races onto a motorway to help a plane thats landing gear failed to operate correctly.
In the video the truck races below the front of the plane as it lands and acts at the front landing wheel. Captions associated with the video often purport that the driver of the truck was an airport mechanic.
While most viewers no doubt expressed a healthy dose of scepticism to the video, many on social media appear to have taken it at face value. That is possibly because of the “realistic” way the video was presented, apparently taken by an amateur videographer on a shaking, low value recording device presumably by a witness.
In actual fact, the video was taken from a 2011 advert presented in the form of a breaking news bulletin. Here is the full video, using the title ‘Landing Gear Failure: Plane Saved By Truck’ promoting the same truck seen in the alleged rescue, a Nissan Frontier.
It is one advert from a series of adverts showing the Nissan Frontier “coming to the rescue” of others. However the adverts often drew criticism from advertising standards agencies because they misrepresented the vehicles abilities. One advert featuring the truck climbing an almost vertical sand dune was pulled after charges were made by the Federal Trade Commission.
As for the airplane rescue advert, that even inspired a science article published on Jalopnik that investigated whether the feat would have indeed been possible had it shown a real attempted rescue. Their determination; no.
Some fine internet research indicates that the front wheel will have to bear about 5-10% of the jet’s weight. Let’s be generous and say that it’s 5% and the 727’s low on fuel, so that its weight is close to its zero-fuel weight. You’d be dropping 5,000+ lbs onto the back of a Nissan Frontier that’s only rated for at most 1,500 lbs (assuming you’re driving the manual V6) and that’s going 100+ MPH. That weight won’t hit all at once — it’ll slowly grow heavier and heavier as the pilot pitches the nose down. Pretty soon you’ll break the tires, rims, suspension and more.
As such, no, this video is not real, was part of an advertisement for Nissan and using special effects to achieve what the viewer sees.