Vesna Vulović, an air stewardess who survived the highest ever fall without a parachute after her plane broke up at 33,000ft (10,000m), has died aged 66. She was not scheduled to be on that flight, being mixed up with another flight attendant named Vesna. Trapped in the plane’s tail cone, she plummeted to earth in sub-freezing temperatures and landed on a steep, heavily wooded slope. She had a fractured skull, two crushed vertebrae and a broken pelvis, ribs and legs. She went on to put her celebrity at the service of political causes, protesting against Slobodan Milošević’s rule in the 1990s and later campaigning for liberal forces in elections. The MythBusters investigation, later questions about the circumstances and height of fall, and more. (previously)
This morning in Montréal. (SLYT 1:47)
Meet Graham, an interactive sculpture developed by a trauma surgeon, a crash investigation expert and a Melbourne artist to show what humans might look like, if they had evolved features to withstand car crashes (via)
Two and a half years after the disappearance of MH370 (original thread), China, Malaysia and Australia have announced the search will be suspended. Why had they been so confident in the first place? How could they have been wrong? (Popular Mechanics)
After the terrible events of March 22nd, the survival of the Belgian Classics season was a relief to many sports fans. Unfortunately, it has been a terrible week for the sport, as two Belgian cyclists have now died in separate incidents. [more inside]
In 2014 a Gulfstream plane crashed and burst into flames in Bedford, Massachusetts, killing seven people (NTSB animation). Aviation writer Ron Rapp argues that the cause was not defective equipment or simple complacency, but the normalization of deviance, whereby "people within [an] organization become so much accustomed to a deviant behavior that they don’t consider it as deviant, despite the fact that they far exceed their own rules for the elementary safety." This was also considered to be a factor in the crashes of the space shuttles Challenger and Columbia. The creator of the concept and author of The Challenger Launch Decision, sociologist Diane Vaughan, is interviewed here. (transcript)
If you happen to drive along NM-137, a quiet rural road in south-east New Mexico, you'll drive through Queen, a former ghost town that is once again inhabited by the living. Slow down and you'll see a monument to The Flying Paper Boy Of The Guadalupes, Frank Kindel. [more inside]
"Usually the kind of sound effects you heard in the earliest cartoons were strictly sound effects produced by musical instruments. What happened with Treg Brown is entirely different; he would bring in sounds that were recorded in the library at Warner Bros. If someone came quick to a stop, he would bring in a car skid from a Jimmy Carney gangster movie that they had recorded. If somebody was hit on the head and flew out a window there'd be a thunderclap followed by the sound of a biplane in a spin recorded for Dawn Patrol. It was this imposition of realistic sounds into the fantasy world of the cartoons which gave them comic impact."
CRASH! BANG! BOOM! The Wild Sounds of Treg Brown, (Part 1 Part 2 [SLYT]) is a short documentary about legendary sound editor Treg Brown.
The New York Times is reporting this morning that crash of the Germanwings plane on Tuesday in the French Alps that killed 150 people "most likely happened" because the co-pilot crashed the jet deliberately, [more inside]
The Science of Survivability (PDF) is a presentation by Anthony T. Brickhouse about maximizing survivability in airplane crashes. It is presented as part of the NOAA Aviation Safety Program, and contains many interesting facts about surviving a plane crash.
A major search is underway to find AirAsia Indonesia Flight QZ8501 after it lost contact with Indonesian air traffic control while enroute from Surabaya, Indonesia to Singapore yesterday without a distress signal. Its parent company, the Malaysia-owned budget airline AirAsia (no connection to Malaysia Airlines) has had a clean safety record; AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes considers this his "worst nightmare". There were initial reports of a plane crashing in East Belitung Island, which are yet to be verified, but the multi-national search is still under way after a break due to darkness and bad weather. Indeed, powerful storms were in QZ8501's flight path, prompting the pilot to request an "unusual" route. There were 162 people on board, primarily Indonesians (including one of the pilots), as well as three South Koreans, one Singaporean, one Malaysian, one French, and one British citizen. There is currently some strong media attention on a family that missed the flight by minutes, who were told by airport officials while negotiating a replacement flight that "This must have been the best Christmas gift your family ever received". [more inside]
“When we yelled ‘Brace!’ ” Brown said later, “I always described it as if you watched a wind come across a field of wheat and everything bends. That’s how it was. Everybody went down. It was like a field of wheat being blown over.” What a plane crash feels like: The inside story of an American aviation disaster — and miracle [more inside]
Malaysia Airlines MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing is missing.
Flight MH370, operated on the B777-200 aircraft, departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41am on 8 March 2014. MH370 was expected to land in Beijing at 6.30am the same day. The flight was carrying a total number of 227 passengers (including 2 infants), 12 crew members.Rumors that the plane has landed in Nanning, China are debunked. Chinese media had originally reported Vietnamese officials saying they've picked up a signal, but this has also been refuted. There has been no contact nor distress signals, and the case is especially puzzling as the plane lost contact at the safest moment of the flight. [more inside]
"Railway Mania was an economic bubble in the United Kingdom in the 1840s that involved a railroad development frenzy and a speculative bubble in the shares of railroad companies. ... [T]he British Railway Mania was the result of overexuberance toward the business prospects of a disruptive innovation; though railroads are now a part of everyday life, they were once every bit as revolutionary as the internet was when it was first introduced."
Just a supercut of crashes from Thomas The Tank Engine set to Drowning Pool.
Seventy years ago today, in the midst of World War II, St. Louis citizens and dignitaries gathered at Lambert Airport to watch a VIP demonstration flight of the CG-4A glider, which had recently entered service. Aboard the glider were William Becker, the Mayor of St. Louis, several other high-ranking city officials, the founder and the vice-president of Robertson Aircraft (a St. Louis company producing the glider for the war effort), as well as two pilots. Immediately after being released by the tow aircraft, the right wing of the glider sheared off, sending the glider plummeting to the ground and killing all ten aboard. [more inside]
Photographer Dietmar Eckell has taen a series of pictures of wrecked airplanes. It's called "Happy Endings," and no one was killed in any of the 15 crashes.
Asiana Airlines Flight 214 crashed just before noon today while attempting to land at SFO. [more inside]
Relive techno fears of yore ... malware aficionado Daniel White collects vintage computer viruses, infects his machines and records the results. See more examples at his YouTube channel.
"Bicycle helmets do an outstanding job of keeping our skulls intact in a major crash. But they do almost nothing to prevent concussions and other significant brain injuries—and the very government agency created to protect us is part of the problem. The time has come to demand something safer."
A secret asian man has spoofed his way into numerous VIP parties in Cannes pretending to be PSY of Gangnam Style fame. Now revealed as a French Korean adoptee living in Ireland, Denis Carré gave a short interview to GQ.
What may well be the first flying car crash happenned today in British Columbia. A Maverick flying car crashed today for unknown reasons. No one was killed in the collision even though the car crashed, while in flight mode, just short of an elementary school. Jalopnick has a picture of the treed vehicle. The Maverick is powered in flight by a propeller and parasail combination. Watch the Skies!
"The Snake" on Mulholland Highway is a notoriously twisty stretch of road near Los Angeles, especially popular with motorcyclists. So many crashes happen at "Edwards Corner" that photographers camp out to film them. The results can be terrifying, or oddly mesmerizing.
Wall Street begins playing again with the same matches that burned the economy in 2008 From the New York Times: "The banks that created risky amalgams of mortgages and loans during the boom — the kind that went so wrong during the bust — are busily reviving the same types of investments that many thought were gone for good. Once more, arcane-sounding financial products like collateralized debt obligations are being minted on Wall Street. " (View article on a single page) [more inside]
"Gold's crash this weekend is, as Oprah might say, a teachable moment. Crashes like this are a good way to find out how markets work. It's like a game of financial Clue, a way to keep sharp your skills of deduction. You don't have to be a stock investor or a math whiz to figure it out, either – you just have to have a good grasp of news and human psychology." - the Guardian on this week's crash in gold commodity prices.
Sure the television broadcasts catch every angle of NASCAR wrecks. However, I think views from the grandstands offer a unique view of the thrill and danger of these events.
Once the financial sector achieves a certain size, its continued expansion reduces economic growth, according to a new study by two senior economists at the Bank for International Settlements, Stephen Cecchetti and Enisse Kharroubi, using a large international data base stretching back more than 30 years.
NASA’s lunar lander crashes, ignites massive explosion (+video). The spider-like spacecraft called Morpheus was on a test flight at Cape Canaveral when it tilted, crashed to the ground and erupted in flames.
"This is unprecedented footage of a small airplane crash from inside the cockpit from two different views. Miraculously, everyone survived. The pilot will make a full recovery and the rest of us escaped with superficial injuries and feel very lucky to be alive." (Graphic accident footage, injuries are shown) [more inside]
A 7 minute timelapse video showing how graphic designer Alexander Koshelkov put together this image of a plane crash using photos from other sources. (Action starts around 40 seconds in. via)
Vintage Car Crash Pictures from the Leslie Jones Collection at the Boston Public Library.
Denny Fitch, one of 4 pilots who guided United 232 to a controlled crash landing in Sioux City, Iowa after a complete hydraulic fluid loss following an engine failure, has died of cancer. He was interviewed about the landing for Errol Morris' First Person series (YouTube) (previously). Denny's family also documented his journey with his incurable brain tumor on his website and blog.
Pandas on a Slide: 46 seconds of happiness. [SLYT]
Slow Motion Car Crash: Jonathan Schipper’s art installation uses hydraulics to crash a VW Golf into a wall at 7mm per hour over the course of a four weeks. [more inside]
Two brothers and two awesome courses in one awesome channel: John Green teaches you world history and Hank Green teaches you biology. [more inside]
15 photographs taken at the scene of the 1960 Park Slope, Brooklyn passenger plane collision. These are horrifying, view with caution. Previously. Sorry it had to be from the Daily Mail, folks.
How do people die in motor "accidents"? I'll tell you. With the Christmas "Silly Season" is upon us, the Age has republished And this is how you die by journalist Roger Aldridge. A warning - it's pretty graphic. Scroll up for the rest of the article.
iPhones, laptops, the Chevy Volt, and airplanes all have something in common - fires caused by lithium batteries. [more inside]
Economic analyst Chris Martenson explains why he thinks that the coming 20 years are going to look completely unlike the last 20 years.
Television New Zealand have captured some extraordinary, gut wrenching footage of a helicopter getting its rotor blades tangled in cables and crashing on Auckland's waterfront. The pilot has apparently walked away without serious injury.
How Fast Can China Go? On June 30, China had the first official run of a $32 billion high-speed train line between Shanghai and Beijing. "Faster (820 miles in 288 minutes) and sleeker than any other, the needle-nosed CRH380A symbolizes China’s accelerating pace, even as it faces questions about safety, and taps into an ancient rivalry with Japan." On page four, the article discusses what happened less than a month afterwards on July 23rd: the country's first accident involving a bullet train that killed 40 people near Wenzhou. As a result, 54 high speed trains were recalled, train speeds were reduced and an overhaul of the high-speed rail system was launched by Chinese authorities. [more inside]
Arnold Odermatt is a Swiss policeman who worked in Niwalden between 1948 and 1990 and who took curiously fascinating photographs of police work and car crashes. His prints are now sold in art galleries. [more inside]
First Air flight 6560 crashed yesterday in Canada's High Arctic. Fifteen passengers were on board, including four crew and eleven passengers. All the crew members were killed in the crash, while three pasengers survived. The plane crashed five miles from the airport in Resolute. Rescue efforts began immediately, as hundreds of military personnel were in Resolute participating in the annual Arctic military exercise Operation Nanook, an operation which includes an exercise in which military personnel respond to a mock air disaster. As a result, military helicopters, medical personnel, Canadian Coast Guard, and local fire and medical crews were on site and ready to respond immediately.
When American Tyler Farrar symbolically claimed America's first stage win on the 4th of July, he dedicated his achievement to the memory of his best friend, Wouter Weylandt, whose tragic crash just two months ago left many questioning whether modern cycling had become too dangerous for today's professional riders (previously). They may have found their answer in Sunday's Stage 9 of what is now being dubbed by many the "Tour de Crash". [more inside]
Kitten crash test, in slow motion, with a suitable soundtrack. Don't worry, no kittens were actually harmed.
Downhill Carnage (SLVimeo)