Revealing the dark truth that aviation safety improves one crash at a time, Mayday investigates legendary aviation disasters to find out what went wrong and why. Based on cockpit voice recorders, accident reports and eyewitness accounts, every episode also features interviews, state-of-the-art CGI and gripping reenactments.
Alternate title: "Desperate Escape"
Air France Flight 358, an Airbus A340 airliner, departed Paris without incident at 11:53UTC August 2, 2005, later touching down on runway 24L-06R at Toronto Pearson International Airport at 20:01 UTC(16:01 EDT). The aircraft failed to stop and plunged into a nearby shallow ravine, coming to rest and bursting into flames approximately 200 metres past the end of the runway. The Airbus A340-313X had 309 people aboard (297 passengers and 12 crew), all of whom survived without life-threatening injuries
Alternate title: "All Engines Failed"
British Airways Flight 009, sometimes referred to as the Jakarta incident, was a scheduled British Airways flight from London Heathrow to Auckland, with stops in Bombay, Madras, Kuala Lumpur, Perth and Melbourne.
On 24 June 1982, the route was being flown by City of Edinburgh, a 747-200 registered G-BDXH, when it flew into a cloud of dust and ash thrown up by the eruption of Mount Galunggung, and all four engines failed. The aircraft was able to glide far enough to exit the ash cloud, and three of the engines were restarted, allowing the flight to divert to Jakarta and perform a safe landing.
Alternate title: "Fiery Landing"
Air Canada Flight 797 was a scheduled trans-border flight that flew on a Houston, Texas-Dallas/Fort Worth-Toronto, Ontario route. While flying over Louisville, Kentucky, an in-flight fire began in the rear lavatory of the McDonnell Douglas DC-9-32.
The pilots made an emergency landing at the Greater Cincinnati Airport, located in Boone County, Kentucky near Cincinnati, Ohio. During the evacuation, the aircraft doors were opened, causing an influx of oxygen that fueled the fire. 23 of the 41 passengers died from smoke inhalation and a flash fire.
Alternate title: "Blind Landing".
Korean Air Flight 801 crashed on August 6, 1997 on approach to Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport, Guam.
The Korean Air Boeing 747-3B5 jet, designated HL7468, was en route from Seoul, South Korea to Guam. It departed from Seoul-Kimpo International Airport (now Gimpo Airport) at 8:53 p.m. (9:53 p.m. Guam time) on August 5. It carried 2 pilots, 1 flight engineer, 14 flight attendants, and 237 passengers.
The flight was uneventful until shortly after 1:00 a.m. on August 6, as the jet was preparing to land. There was heavy rain at Guam so visibility was significantly reduced and the crew was attempting an instrument landing. At around 1:40, the aircraft was cleared to land at runway 6L. At 1:42, the aircraft crashed into Nimitz Hill, about 3 miles (5 km) short of the runway, at an altitude of 660 feet (201 m). Of the 254 people on board, 228 were killed, most of them by the ensuing fire; only 23 passengers and 3 flight attendants survived.
Alternate title: "Mystery Crashes"
The Boeing B-737 is the most reliable plane in the world. But in 1991, United Airlines Flight 585's rudder fails and the plane nosedives during approach. Investigators know nothing about what caused it. T
hen in 1994, USAir Flight 427 crashes in the same way after take-off. What is causing the crashes? Is there a Hidden Danger in every B-737 in the world?
Alternate title: "6 Mile Plunge"
February 19, 1985:
China Airlines Flight 006 collides with a jet stream while flying to Los Angeles. The no. 4 engine fails and the pilots try to restart the engine at a much too high altitude. The plane banks slowly to the right but the pilot expects the autopilot to steady the plane. The plane slows down and stalls, sending the passengers and crew into a spiraling nosedive. The sudden actions put everyone under incredible G-forces. The Flight Engineer mistakes readings on the gauges for total engine failures on all engines rather than the Captain putting the throttle to idle. The speed increases and the plane pulls out of the dive but stalls again and falls. The extreme forces rip the undercarriage doors off and pieces of the stabilizers rip off as well. The Boeing 747SP clears the clouds and the pilot sees the horizon. The plane is pulled from the dive, pinning the passengers to their seats. The pilot lands safely at San Francisco despite having trouble with the elevators. 2 people are hurt, but everyone is alive.
AKA "Desperate Dive", "Deadly Disorientation".
Flash Airlines Flight 604 departs Sharm el-Sheikh International Airport in Egypt for Paris. Just after take-off, the aircraft banks right and goes off course. The pilot corrects the roll but the aircraft banks right again. This time the pilot does nothing. The Boeing 737 rolls further and descends into the Red Sea 9km south of Sharm el-Sheikh. Everyone on board is dead. Although many people today claim that the pilot was spatially disorientated, the cause of this disaster is still disputed.
Alternative title: "Unconscious Pilot"
14 August 2005:
Helios Airways Flight 522 takes-off from Cyprus. As it flies over Greece, air traffic controllers lose radio contact with it. Fighter jets are sent up to meet with the Boeing 737. One of the jets get close to the plane only to see that the First Officer is alone and unconscious in the flight deck. Everyone in the cabin is also unconscious and oxygen masks are dangling from the cabin ceiling. The captain is missing. Then, the fighter jet pilot witnesses someone enter the cockpit. The mysterious person appears to be trying to regain control of the aircraft, but it is too late. Soon, Flight 522 runs out of fuel and dives into a hill near Marathon. There are no survivors. After a thorough investigation, the mysterious person is found out to be a flight attendant that had been working on the flight who managed to stay conscious by using a portable oxygen mask as opposed to the aircraft's installed oxygen masks. This solved the mystery of who the fighter pilot was looking at before the aircraft went down.
August 31, 1986:
Aeroméxico Flight 498 is descending into Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) for landing. Meanwhile, a private Piper Cherokee owned by the Kramer family takes-off from an airfield in nearby Torrance. They unwittingly enter LAX airspace but the air traffic controller doesn't notice it due to a distraction by a Grumman Tiger Flight 66R on the screen. Suddenly over the residential district of Cerritos, the Kramers' plane smashes into Flight 498's horizontal stabilizer, shearing off the top of the cockpit of the private plane and snapping half of the tail off from Flight 498. The Kramers die as a result of the impact. The badly damaged DC-9 flips inverted and plummets into the houses below. Everyone on board dies plus 15 people on the ground. The private plane falls out of the sky and crashes into a school playground.
Alternate titles: "Flight 21 is Missing", "Inbound" and "Flight 21 Is Missing".
A USAF Boeing CT-43 (operating under the call sign IF021) attempts an instrument approach into Dubrovnik Airport in heavy fog. The passengers are mainly government officials, including U.S. Government Secretaries. The pilots attempt the IFR non-precision NDB approach to Runway 12. The aircraft goes off course and hits mountains north of the airport, killing all 35 people on board, including the United States Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown.