At the end of Sully, during the hearing, Sully and his copilot are proven correct in their decision to land on the Hudson by adding 35 seconds to the simulation. All the way at the end, the woman from the NTSB asks copilot Jeff Skiles if he would've done anything different, to which he responds: "Yes, I would've done it in July" (as opposed to January, when it really happened, so that the water and outside temperature would not have been as cold). The entire audience at the hearing laughs and the movie ends.

Did Jeff Skiles actually say that by the real-life NTSB hearing, or was that added for movie effect?

2 Answers 2


Jeff Skiles definitely didn't say that in NTSB hearing.

Jeff Skiles said that to Captain Sully probably at some other point (as mentioned by the other answer).

In fact Jeff Skiles never* spoke in the entire hearing and Captain Sully was the only one who was answering questions. The same is maintained in the movie if I remember correctly. Except for the last part where Jeff Skiles answers the final question with a humorous July comment.

That question was actually asked* to Captain Sully to which he answered in a formal manner:

DR. WILSON: Looking back at the accident event, is there anything that you would do differently if you were faced with that situation again?

CAPT. SULLENBERGER: I think what we did, the situation we faced and the time that we had, First Officer Jeff Skiles and Flight Attendants Donna Dent, Sheila Dail and Doreen Welsh did the very best we could and I am proud to have been a member of a highly experience, highly trained team.

*You can confirm this from the transcripts of the actual hearing. It's an interesting read if one is curious. I finished part 1.

Public Hearing Day 1 - June 09, 2009 - Transcript

Public Hearing Day 2 - June 10, 2009 - Transcript

Public Hearing Day 3 - June 11, 2009 - Transcript


Flight 1549 Captain Chesley Sullenberger spoke with Maggie Rodriguez and Harry Smith about the moments before he landed the airplane safely in the Hudson River, and around the fourth minute he does claim that Skiles uttered that phrase:

Though it isn't clear to me whether this happened at the NTSB hearing.

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