Category: History

Sutlej Missing Over Indian Ocean

On 25 March 1986, three Antonov An-32 transport planes departed Muscat, the capital of Oman, in a staggered formation for the Indian Air Force base at Jagmagar. Initially, the Indian Air Force were using Douglas DC-3 Dakotas and Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcars for their transport. In the 1980s, spurred by the developing relationship between Leonid…

Read more… 9 Jun 17

“I Don’t Know Why I Killed Him But I Did”

The true story of Earnest Pletch is hard to believe, even almost a hundred years later. Commonly referred to as America’s first hijack, I’m not sure where else there might have been an earlier one. Also, I think it should technically be referred to as in-flight theft of an aircraft, I guess, not to mention…

Read more… 14 Apr 17

Kaleva Shot Down By Long Range Bombers

Today is the 99th anniversary of Estonian independence. Sadly, that doesn’t mean 99 years of independence. The auspicious date seems like a good opportunity for a historical post covering the most famous aviation incident in Estonian territory: when the Finnish passenger plane Kaleva was shot down by Soviet bombers as it was departing Tallinn. Kaleva…

Read more… 24 Feb 17

The Mystery of Flying Tiger Line flight 739

On the 16th of March, 1962, a Lockheed Super Constellation airliner disappeared over the Pacific. The Flying Tiger Line was the first scheduled cargo airline in the US. It was named after the Flying Tigers fighter unit, a World War II group of pilots from the US Army, Navy and Marine Corps whose shark-faced fighter…

Read more… 30 Sep 16

Disaster at the Air Show

ONE OF THE MOST tragic accidents in recent history is hard to reach concrete conclusions about because there are no published investigation results and no final report to be read. The accident took place at Sknyliv Airport, near Lviv in the Ukraine, in July 2002. Fourteen years later, the local community has still not recovered.…

Read more… 5 Aug 16

Wrong Way Corrigan mistakes Ireland for California

The story of how Douglas Corrigan ended up in Ireland while aiming for California is one of my favourites. In fact, I feel sure that I’ve written about him before*. It was seventy-eight years ago, the 17th of July in 1938, when Douglas Corrigan earned the nickname “Wrong Way Corrigan”. He started his aviation career…

Read more… 22 Jul 16

Accident Reports

He's a Terror in a Twin

Sometimes it’s obvious how an accident report is going to end from the very first sentence. NTSB Identification: CEN15FA400 “The airplane owner, who was a noninstrument-rated private pilot and did…

The Database Error And The Turkish Airlines Airbus

On the 4th of March 2015 a Turkish Airlines Airbus A330-303 left the runway when landing at Kathmandu. The headlines called it a database error. When I read the accident…

Demystifying

The 1% rule and air disaster avoidance

I asked my friend, Robert Dawson, to help me understand the numbers behind risk assessment and the 1% rule. Robert writes fantastic science fiction and poetry, however I contacted him…

Airplane Pens

This is a bit of a short post today to make up for all the heavy posts recently. Me, I’m enjoying the long weekend and a bit of sunshine… This…

History

The first supersonic jet bomber

This week, I am away camping in rainy North Wales. However, my friend Tatiana works for Picryl (https://picryl.com), a cross-platform application to find traces of history in photos, rare and…

Another Unsolved Mystery: The Kinross Incident

The Kinross Incident is a famous aviation accident which many still believe shows proof of an extraterrestrial encounter. The story unfolds in late November in 1953 over the Great Lakes.…

Fun Stuff

This Week's Most Amazing Stories

This has been an amazing week for aviation news with unbelievable stories and videos seemingly coming from all directions. Anna and I have been posting every day to the Fear…

Fascinating Aviation Articles on the Internet

How Aviation Became Firefighters’ Best Friend—And Then Their Worst Enemy This fire, now known as the Saddle Fire, raged across the state throughout summer 2016. Before it burned out it…