On This Day in Aviation History

December 29, 2009

On This Day in Aviation History: December 29th

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By: Phil Derner Jr.
The flightpath of Eastern flight 401 after its go-around to the crash site, showing their gradually descending altitude into the Everglades.
The flightpath of Eastern flight 401 after its go-around to the crash site, showing their gradually descending altitude into the Everglades.
The flightpath of Eastern flight 401 after its go-around to the crash site, showing their gradually descending altitude into the Everglades.

The flightpath of Eastern flight 401 after its go-around to the crash site, showing their gradually descending altitude into the Everglades.

1994 – Turkish Airlines Flight 278, a 737-4Y0 registered TC-JES, crashes on approach to Van Ferit Melen Airport in Turkey, killing 57 of the 78 people on-board.

1974 – A Tarom Antonov AN-24 (registered YR-AMD) flying from Bucharest to Sibiu, crashes into the side of the Lotrului Mountains, killing all 28 passengers and 5 crew members. The crash is blamed on the crew incorrectly executing the approach, which led to the aircraft drifting off course by 20 km in turbulent conditions.

1972 – Eastern Airlines Flight 401 crashes into the Florida Everglades, killing 101 of the 176 on-board. After the Lockheed L-1011 (registered N310EA) had experienced a landing gear issue on approach, the flight was put into a hold while the crew engaged the auto-pilot to investigate. At some point, the auto-pilot was accidentally disengaged, and the aircraft slowly lost altitude until it was too late to recover. Parts from the ill-fated aircraft were placed on other Eastern planes, and it is rumored that ghosts from flight 401 haunted the other Tristars. It was also the first widebody aircraft crash in the US.

1939 – The Consolidated B-24 Liberator makes its first flight.

1921 – Pilots Edward Stinson and Lloyd Bertaud set a world endurance record when flying their BMW-engined Junkers-Larsen for 26 hours, 18 minutes and 35 seconds while flying a over Roosevelt Field, NY.