On This Day in Aviation History
On This Day in Aviation History: February 2nd
1987 - After racking up an unmanageable amount of debt in only four years of existence, Newark-based PEOPLExpress Airlines ceases operations and merges with Continental.
1974 – The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon makes its 90-minute maiden flight out of Edwards AFB. (However, a few days earlier on January 20th its actual first flight occurred accidentally during a high-speed taxi test. While gathering speed, a roll-control oscillation caused a fin of the port-side wingtip-mounted missile and then the starboard stabilator to scrape the ground. The test pilot, Phil Oestricher, decided to take the aircraft up to avoid a potential crash, safely landing six minutes later.)
1950 - Japan Air Lines begins twice-weekly service to San Francisco, the carrier’s first international route.
1872 - French navy-engineer Dupuy de Lome gets his elbow-grease powered airship up to a top speed of 11 km/h.