The World’s Most Dangerous Airport

This is one airport you don’t want to fly into. Tegucigalpa’s (pronounced Tay-goo-see-gall-pah) Toncontín International Airport in Honduras is one of the world’s most dangerous airports.

toncontin airport landing

Landing at Tegucigalpa Airport. Start praying

For people that have to fly in regularly, the landing is an absolute nightmare. Passengers are flown through a twisted ravine before landing on a short runway.

For those that live close to the airport, the nightmare is no different with constant danger lurking overhead as planes fly low over their houses on final approach. Many firefighters that service Toncontín International Airport have seen more than one major airline crash in their careers. The biggest crash to date at Tegucigalpa’s airport was in 2008 when a TACA Airlines Airbus A320 overshot the runway on a rainy day in the Honduran capital.

What makes it so dangerous

  • Mountainous region
  • An extremely short runway
  • Unusual maneuvers pilots must take to avoid the mountains

On the bright side

Having been the scene of no less than six fatal crashes since 1989, authorities have decided it’s high time they start planning for a new airport in Honduras’ capital city. However, after 160 aviation fatalities (most from commercial jet crashes) it seems the plans to build a new airport alongside a longer and safer runway at a military base outside the capital can’t come soon enough.

Toncontín International Airport Video: Al Jazeera

Our Readers Comments

  1. When I worked in Central and South America back in the early Seventies I used to fly into Tegucigalpa regularly. Every landing was an adventure, since the glidepath paralleled the slope of the mountain you were flying over. You’d see women putting clothes on the line fifty feet below, and right at the approach end of the runway there was a heavily trafficked road. One day a VW Microbus filled with perhaps a dozen or more Hondurans was clipped by the left main gear of a Convair 340; all in the Microbus were killed while the 340 went on to land without further incident. Scary airport!

  2. Thank you for your comment Mr. Cameron! My granddaughter will fly to Honduras on a medical mission soon. You have greatly relieved my worried mind. May God bless and continue to protect you always.

  3. Seconded to the Organization of American States for their peace keeping mission there in the early 70’s, we did not fly at night around Honduras. The shortness of the runway was not the problem as we were flying UH-1 helicopters, but the surrounding mountains and lack of navigational aides was problematical.

  4. It is not so bad anymore. 35 times I have been there. Aircraft now land from the opposite direction and it’s all level there now, no more dangers.

  5. Lived in Teguz flew twice a week to El Salvador and back- very hairy, particularly in a storm(fairly frequent), but I am still around

  6. This is an Airport I flew into when I visited USA. I took a flight from Miami Airport to Honduras

Have something to say...