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Deadly Departure: Why the Experts Failed to Prevent the TWA Flight 800 Disaster and How It Could Happen Again [Format Kindle]

Christine Negroni

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Présentation de l'éditeur

The in-flight explosion of TWA Flight 800 on July 17, 1996, was one of the deadliest disasters in American history, spurring the most expensive airline investigation ever undertaken by the U.S. government. To this day the crash remains clouded in doubt and shadowed by suspicion of a government conspiracy.

If there was any conspiracy to hide the truth about what really happened to Flight 800, it began long before the crash. Past crashes tell the story: What happened on Flight 800 has happened before and will again, unless drastic changes are made. Now veteran journalist Christine Negroni reveals what the commercial aviation industry has known for more than thirty-five years that during flight confined vapors in the fuel tanks can create a bomb like environment. It takes only a small energy source to ignite it.

TWA Flight 800 was the fourteenth fuel tank explosion on a commercial airliner in thirty-five years. Yet each and every time, the airline industry persuaded regulators to deal with the symptoms of the problem and ignore the cause. When investigators could not immediately determine what happened, they were finally forced to look at the bigger picture. And, for the first time, this book exposes the hubris of aircraft manufacturers who knew all along, but dismissed as acceptable, the risk of fuel tank explosions.

Deadly Departure shines a spotlight on the chaos behind the most massive crash investigation ever conducted, how the White House had to intervene between feuding investigators, and the surprising stories behind the missile theory conspiracies. It also tells the stories of the passengers and their families, the people of TWA and Boeing, the rescue and crisis workers, and the investigators and scientists involved illustrating the devastating effects on human lives. An impeccably researched, eye-opening examination of one of the great disasters of our time, Deadly Departure is a stunning exposé of how industry pressure continues to undermine regulatory policy, placing air travelers' lives at risk.

Biographie de l'auteur

Christine Negroni is an award-winning broadcast journalist. She has worked for various local television stations, as well as CBS News, PBS, and CNN, where she covered aviation. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, the writer Jim Schembari, and their four children.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 9335 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 288 pages
  • Editeur : Harper Perennial; Édition : Revised (29 octobre 2013)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°685.461 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)

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Amazon.com: 3.7 étoiles sur 5  22 commentaires
20 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Strong Medicine! 20 juillet 2002
Par Mcgivern Owen L - Publié sur Amazon.com
It's strange how many "unhelpful " internal amazon votes "Deadly Departure" has generated. I'm attributing that to the reality that the subject matter, the investigation and aftermath of TWA Flight #800, is so highly emotional. We amazon types obviously care about how our peers rate DD. Give author Negroni credit: She attempted to get her arms around a challenging, difficult and technical story. 4 stories are interspersed: There are vignettes of various passengers and crew. Then there are the fringe personalities-Governor Pataki, Rudy Giuliani, George Marlin (remember HIM?) and folks of that ilk-each with an "agenda". She writes of the unfortunate bureaucratic fighting and turf protecting among such agencies as the FBI and National Transportation Safety Board. And finally she covers the technical aspects-especially the role of a potentially lethal empty center fuel tank on a 747. I give the author "A" for effort in attempting to tie so many ends together; all in a brief, large print 237-page hardcover tale. I would have decidedly preferred it if she had concentrated more on the ongoing investigations and technical aspects of the disaster. That's because the personal stories require space and a longer plot. Given the hideously serious nature of the crash, more light should be shed upon 1) the documented dangers of the fuel tanks-the military took corrective action concerning them that the cowardly Federal Aviation Administration has not for civil planes. 2) The hostile role of the FBI and its' refusal to cooperate with the NTSB. Thank God lead agent James Kallstrom has retired. 3) The future: the FAA must simply stop the practice of "counting tombstones". The idea that "it's better to have an occasional crash than pay for expensive safety changes" is disgraceful and immoral. True enough, DD touches on these but loses them in the broad brush of a wider "human interest" tale. That said, DD remains an important and serious book, but these problems merit the subtraction of one star. It actually made me lose two nights sleep! I will definitely feel more nervous the next time I fly because I've been reminded that the bureaucrats at the FAA are watching the backs of the aviation industry, not mine or yours. It is strong medicine and I recommend a dose. DD touches sensitive nerves. More power to it!
14 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An exceptionally well written account... 15 mai 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
An exceptionally well written account of what is a tragic, mysterious and fascinating airline accident. The author does a comprehensive job reporting and explaining the circumstances of the convoluted investigative process that followed the TWA 800 accident. "Deadly Departure" also introduces the reader to some of the backgrounds' of the victims, their families and those involved with the crash to this day. The countless research time and painstaking accuracy which support this book are quite apparent. As an aviation safety professional, I often find myself especially critical of aviation reporting. In this case, my fastidious criticism yields a "must read" recommendation.
13 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 An eye opener, but misses the mark on root cause. 7 mars 2000
Par Joe Ruszczyk - Publié sur Amazon.com
Negroni provides us with an unsettling look at alleged shortfalls in airline safety, the politics of the business, and the friction between investigative government agencies. Disappointedly, her approach to the issues is a little sensationalistic and avoids some obvious facts which detract from the truly emotional issues. In example, the book ignores the changeover to a less volatile fuel by both the military and commercial airlines which weakens many of the fuel tank as the cause theories. Still, "Deadly Departure" does provide some new and interesting assumptions.
22 internautes sur 29 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 The friendly skies? 19 juillet 2001
Par Duwayne Anderson - Publié sur Amazon.com
When TWA flight 800 exploded shortly after takeoff on July 17, 1996, the immediate speculation centered around a terrorist attack. This premature conclusion was based on some eyewitness accounts and political circumstances that fomented such speculation. Christine, though, shows how careful examination of the wreckage has shown, almost conclusively, that the airliner was brought down not by a terrorist bomb or missile, but by an explosion in the nearly empty center wing tank.
Christine writes her book in the style of an investigative reporter, with windows into the lives of many of the people connected with this tragedy. You come to know many of the victims, the crew, and investigators as she threads her way through the tangled story.
Having a somewhat technical background, I found myself frequently wishing the author had included more engineering detail in her narrative. I think the average reader, however, will find the level about right - especially those who tend to focus more on the human element than the engineering issues.
Christine's main thesis is that an explosion in the nearly empty center fuel tank brought down the jetliner, that Boeing and the FAA had reason to know a design defect could cause such an explosion, that they chose economy over saving people's lives, and that it's bound to happen again.
The first of these claims has been born out and accepted by the scientific investigation of the crash. Having exhausted all the other possibilities (including missiles and bombs) the investigators have concluded with high probability that the explosion resulted from faulty wiring and a volatile mixture of fumes and air in the center wing tank. The second claim also seems to be established. Flight 800 was not the first explosion of a fuel tank, and the volatile properties of the gaseous mix in a hot, nearly empty fuel tank were known. In fact, Boeing took extraordinary precautions to prevent an ignition source within the tank precisely to avoid such an explosion. I think it's also fair to say that the design decisions were largely based on economics, and not strictly on making the planes as safe as possible for the flying public. Christine illustrates how fuel inerting systems exist, and how they are used on military aircraft to prevent fires. I'm not sure Christine fully establishes her fourth claim - that it could happen again. Of course, nothing is perfectly safe, so there is always a finite probability that another explosion will occur. But it's not clear that preventing ignition sources by design and proper maintenance (there is strong evidence that old wiring was the ignition source on flight 800) is inherently less sure than inerting systems.
I think Christine should also have spent more time developing her argument about designing for safety instead of economy. She seems indignant at the prospects of economic equations that allow for a certain percentage of fatalities before spending money on a cure. Yet we all make these decisions each day. Pedestrians in New York City, for example, hardly ever wear bicycle helmets, even though a certain percentage of pedestrian deaths would be eliminated if everyone wore head protection. Somewhere, in the back of our minds, each of us decides that somehow the risk of death is insufficient to encumber us with the cost and inconvenience of wrapping our head in plastic-shrouded Styrofoam. Similarly the existence of cost-benefit economic equations that allow for a certain possibility of mid-air explosions is not, in and of itself, immoral. The real issues are quantitative: What are the probabilities? What value do they assign to human life? What are the costs?
Unfortunately, Christine does not deal with the question quantitatively, which is my only real complaint about this book. As I said, however, I don't think Christine intended to write to an audience of aeronautical engineers. As popular science I think she's written a fine book. I certainly found it entertaining. I read the entire thing on a flight from Portland to Boston (well, I had about 50 pages to finish when I got to my hotel). It's one of those books that grips you. One you can hardly put down. And, yes, every once in a while, as I read the book at 37,000 feet, I found myself wishing that Boeing had used fuel inerting.
10 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Well worth reading 13 avril 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Christine Negroni has written a spellbinding account of the TWA flight 800 disaster. While the outcome is known before you begin the book, she successfully weaves together all of the different strands of this disaster -- from the technical, to the human interest, the inter-agency rivalry, and the painstaking detective work. The book will appeal to the lay reader who is not an expert in aviation safety. Given the prevalence of conspiracy theorists who are anxious to debunk this book (and any responsible theories about this disaster) I would read any negative reviews with a huge grain of salt. Read the book and come to your own conclusions. You will be glad you did.
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