• Short Summary

    A FOUR-ENGINED CONSTELLATION AIRCRAFT WAS DELIBERATELY HURLED TO DESTRUCTION AT 120 MILES AN HOUR IN THE UNITED STATES IN A TEST IN THE INTERESTS OF SAFETY RESEARCH.

  • Description

    A FOUR-ENGINED CONSTELLATION AIRCRAFT WAS DELIBERATELY HURLED TO DESTRUCTION AT 120 MILES AN HOUR IN THE UNITED STATES IN A TEST IN THE INTERESTS OF SAFETY RESEARCH.

    THE TEST WAS CARRIED OUT BY THE FLIGHT SAFETY ASSOCIATION ON A SMALL AIRPORT ON THE OUTSKIRTS OF PHOENIX, ARIZONA. THE AIRCRAFT, NOW 15 YEARS OLD, HAD ONCE BEEN A LUXURY AIRLINER THAT COST TWO MILLION DOLLARS. THE CIVIL AVIATION AGENCY PAID 38,000 DOLLARS TO ACQUIRE IT, AND A HUNDRED THOUSAND TO WRECK IT.

    THE PURPOSE OF THE TEST WAS TO MEASURE EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENS IN THE CABIN OF A PLANE WHEN IT CRASHES. TWENTY-ONE REALISTIC DUMMIES REPRESENTED PASSENGERS, AND INSTRUMENTS MEASURED THE STRESSES ON PASSENGERS, SEATS, SEAT BELTS AND VARIOUS KINDS OF RESTRAINING HARNESS. SEVERAL OF THE "PASSENGERS" WERE LISTED AS SURVIVORS.

    THE CRASH ALSO TESTED THE DURABILITY OF THE ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION'S CONTAINERS FOR RADIO-ACTIVE WASTE, WHICH WERE LOADED IN THE CARGO-HOLD.

    THE TEST WAS CARRIED OUT BY REMOTE CONTROL. THE CONSTELLATION WAS SENT DOWN THE RUNWAY UNDER ITS OWN POWER, GUIDED BY A FOUR-THOUSAND FOOT RAIL INTO OBSTACLES WHICH WOULD TEAR OFF THE LANDING GEAR AND SMASH THE WINGS. EXPERTS SAID THE CRASH WENT OFF EXACTLY AS PLANNED. THE AIRCRAFT BROKE INTO THREE LARGE PIECES BEFORE COMING TO REST ON A HILL AT THE END OF THE RUNWAY. A SMALL FIRE BROKE OUT WHEN THE WINGS SHEARED OFF. THE PLANE HAD VERY LITTLE FUEL ON BOARD, BUT DYED LIQUIDS WERE USED TO SHOW HOW THE FUEL TANKS BURST AND SPREAD EXPLOSIVE VAPOURS.

    IT WAS A TYPE OF CRASH THAT COULD HAVE BEEN CAUSED IN REALITY BY A SERIOUS PILOT ERROR ON LANDING: EITHER LANDING SHORT OF THE RUNWAY OR OVERSHOOTING. OR IT MIGHT HAVE HAPPENED THROUGH ENGINE FAILURE ON TAKE-OFF.

    THE TEST WAS THE SECOND OF ITS KIND TO BE CARRIED OUT AT PHOENIX THIS YEAR.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVADDBUPUBBQG1GEFS09C6L4Y64N
    Media URN:
    VLVADDBUPUBBQG1GEFS09C6L4Y64N
    Group:
    Reuters - Incuding Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    04/09/1964
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:46:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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