• Short Summary

    The world's first crash of a supersonic airliner took place before a horrified crowd
    of 3300,000 at the Paris Air Show on Sunday (3 June) when a Soviet TU-144 exploded and
    plunged in flames onto a town near Le Sourget airfield, killing at least 21
    people.

  • Description

    The world's first crash of a supersonic airliner took place before a horrified crowd
    of 3300,000 at the Paris Air Show on Sunday (3 June) when a Soviet TU-144 exploded and
    plunged in flames onto a town near Le Sourget airfield, killing at least 21
    people.

    The fussian jet was following its Anglo-French rival, Concords, on a
    demonstration run over the airfield on the last day of the show. About 10
    minutes into its display, the Tupolev appeared to stall and go into a dive from
    1,500 ft (500 metres.) A few seconds later there was an explosion and the
    aircraft disintegrated in a sheet of flame, showering burning wreckage over a
    wide area.

    All six of the TU-144's crew perished and at least 15 people were killed on the
    ground, with another 25 injured. At least 10 houses in the nearby town of
    Goussainville were destroyed by the burning wreckage and others damaged.

    The aircraft was a per-production model which had been lengthened to carry more
    passengers and fitted with small wings in the nose. Britain's Aerospace Minister
    Michael Heseltine told newsman on Sunday that the crash wasn't likely to affect
    the Concorde programme.

    A spokesman for the British Aircraft Corporation -- the U.K. builders of
    Concorde -- pointed out that rival jets were "completely different machines that
    just happen to have the common capability of being able to fly at supersonic
    speeds." SYNOPSIS: Tragedy struck the Soviet supersonic airliner project
    unexpectedly on Sunday. The Anglo-French Concrode, had just made a perfect run
    on the last day of the Paris International Air Show. It was the turn of the
    Russian TU-144 to show its paces. The aircraft was a pre-production model which
    had been lengthened to carry more passengers, and fitted with small wings either
    side of its needle-like nose. The TU-144 was being flown in the nose-down
    attitude adopted at take-off and landing. Everything was normal for the first
    ten minuted of the Russian display -- the aircraft had climbed to about fifteen
    hundred feet.

    The thirty-thousand crowd were waiting for another run. Then, something went
    wrong.....

    The Tu-144 seemed to stall. The aircraft went into a slow dive, and then there
    was an explosion. The wings sheared off and the blazing pieces plunged to the
    ground. There was no hope for the six men aboard.

    The deadly shower of burning wreckage fell on the little town of Goussainville,
    ten miles from Le Bourget Airport. There, at least nine people died as chunks of
    twisted metal crashed through roofs and walls. Another six people dies in the
    surrounding area.

    One men was decapitated by flying wreckage, which injured at least twenty-five
    people. Pieces of the TU-144 fell over a wide area. The nose-cone ploughed into
    empty field. The delta-shaped wings were strewn more than half a mile apart. At
    least ten houses were completely destroyed and many more damaged.

    The massive emergency services which are always standing by during the Paris Air
    Show, in fear of such a diester, immediately sprang into action. Rescue teams
    even used some of the helicopters being shown at the air show.

    The forward section of the Russian airliner's fuselage plunged into a group of
    houses. Part of one wing fell into the courtyard of Goussainville town hall. The
    rear section fell outside the town. Oil slicks from the wreckage spread through
    the streets, and the burning dearie set a number of houses ablaze. Firemen were
    reported to have quickly brought the fire under control. Britain's ??? Minister
    Michael Hesoltine sold on Sunday that the crash wasn't likely to affect the
    programme of the rival Anglo-French Concorde. But the disaster will certainly be
    felt by all working on supersonic flight -- not just the Russian development
    team.



  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA85CEE8U89BF7E9JXRPEAZZHLV
    Media URN:
    VLVA85CEE8U89BF7E9JXRPEAZZHLV
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    03/06/1973
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:03:45:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

Comments (0)

We always welcome comments and more information about our films.
All posts are reactively checked. Libellous and abusive comments are forbidden.

Add your comment