That Whirring Noise After a Plane Lands? Nothing to Worry About

shallow focus photography of people inside of passenger plane

After an airplane lands and pulls up to the jetbridge, passengers often hear a high-pitched whirring noise. This noise can be alarming for those who are not familiar with the sounds of an airplane, but it is a normal part of the airplane’s operation. The noise is typically caused by the Auxiliary Power Unit (APU), which is a small engine located in the tail of the airplane that provides power to the aircraft’s systems when the main engines are not running. So what exactly is the APU?

The high-pitched whirring noise that you hear after an airplane lands and pulls up to the jetbridge is most likely the sound of the Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) running.

The APU is a small engine located in the tail of the airplane that provides power to the aircraft when the main engines are not running, such as during ground operations or when the airplane is parked at the gate. It can also be used as a backup power source in case of an emergency.

When the airplane lands and pulls up to the jetbridge, the main engines are turned off, and the APU is started to provide power to the airplane’s systems, including the air conditioning and electrical systems. The APU runs for a short period after landing to ensure that the airplane’s systems remain powered until it is connected to external power at the gate.

The high-pitched whirring noise is the sound of the APU’s turbine spinning, which can be heard throughout the cabin and on the ground. While the noise can be loud and noticeable, it is a normal part of the airplane’s operation and is necessary to ensure that the airplane’s systems continue to function properly after landing. So, no – nobody is sawing or drilling into the airplan. It’s just the APU.

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