Category: History

Chalk’s Flying Service and the Grumman Mallard

Sometimes when I am looking into the background of an accident, I keep finding more and more intriguing details, rabbit holes of interesting information, until I’m barely sure anymore what it was I wanted to know in the first place. It’s well known that commercial aviation got its start in the aftermath of the First…

Read more… 11 May 18

Goddamned Cat

Sometimes the best stories are the ones that aren’t so famous, where the race was not won and the record was not broken. This is such a story. It’s the story of a cat, who was neither the first cat to fly nor the first cat to cross the Atlantic. But the cat rubbed shoulders…

Read more… 15 Dec 17

The Story of the Avro Lancaster LM650 KM-T

I became interested in this story last year, when a reader named Niall left a comment about this rather odd item for sale on Ebay: What was the story of this piece of an aircraft, suddenly available for sale for a mere £26, seventy years after the crash? The answer took me down a rabbit…

Read more… 29 Sep 17

Amelia Earhart Captured By Japanese

On Wednesday, the news hit the headlines that a newly discovered photograph could show Amelia Earhart in Japanese custody. The photograph, apparently taken by a US spy in the 1930s, shows what appears to be a seated woman with rough curly hair. The location of the photograph is given as Jaluit Atoll on the Marshall…

Read more… 7 Jul 17

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

Accident Reports

MH370 Report: Additional Factors and No Answers

This is a continuation of my analysis of the Malaysian Safety Investigation Report. Last week we looked at the flight details of Malaysia Airlines flight 370, with a focus on…

MH370 Report : Where Did It Go?

On Monday, the The Malaysian Safety Investigation Team for MH370 released their SAFETY INVESTIGATION REPORT to the public. They have been careful to state that this is not a final…

Demystifying

Thirty Years Since Air France Flight 296

Thirty years ago, on the 26th of June 1988, a brand new Airbus A320 crashed during a demonstration of its fly-by-wire capabilities, killing three passengers and demolishing the plane as…

Drone Killer

When I’m not obsessing about aviation, I write speculative fiction, including science fiction featuring near-future technology. So you can imagine I was pretty excited when I saw a headline last…

History

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…

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…

Fun Stuff

For your amusement: weird and interesting NOTAMS

I was browsing around looking for interesting news when I saw that Reddit user justachamelion had posted a great question for /r/AskReddit: Pilots of Reddit, what are the weirdest or…

In case you were wondering what to get me for Christmas

There are lots of private jets up for sale but this one is special… It is a 1962 Lockheed JetStar 1329. The JetStar was a private project at Lockheed, originally…