The Crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 22: Completing the Record of the 1967 Midair Collision Near Hendersonville, North Carolina

The Crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 22: Completing the Record of the 1967 Midair Collision Near Hendersonville, North Carolina

by Paul D. Houle

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Overview

The Crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 22: Completing the Record of the 1967 Midair Collision Near Hendersonville, North Carolina by Paul D. Houle

Against a backdrop of inadequate funding, misplaced priorities and a lack of manpower, American commercial aviation in the 1960s was in a perilous state. In July 1967, when a Piedmont Airlines Boeing 727 collided with a Cessna 310 over Hendersonville, North Carolina, killing 82 people, the industry was in crisis. Congress called hearings on aviation safety and government and union officials pressured President Lyndon Johnson to request increased funding for aviation safety.
But the National Transportation Safety Board’s probe into the crash was flawed from the start. The investigative team was made up of individuals whose companies had certain interests in the outcome. The lead investigator was the brother of the vice president of Piedmont Airlines. In an effort to shift blame from the government and Piedmont, critical conversations recorded on tape never made it into the NTSB’s report. Maintenance and training records, as well as industry warnings of the 727’s operational limitations, were also omitted. This book reveals the true story of the investigation: what was left out and why.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781476662244
Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
Publication date: 12/22/2015
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 441,832
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Paul D. Houle is a former traffic accident investigator with the United States Army. His work in the field of transportation has spanned a couple of decades. He lives in Chesnee, South Carolina.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments ix

Preface 1

Introduction 4

1. “I have a flight plan for you” 7

2. Passenger List 17

3. “Twenty-two is ready to go” 21

4. “Twenty-two rolling” 31

5. “Somebody got an ashtray on fire?” 45

6. “A large ball of smoke and flame” 50

7. “We think it might be a big one” 58

8. “Deliberate, continuous leaks” 68

9. “This process is conducted entirely in the open” 80

10. “There is nothing in the budget request for radar systems” 87

11. “I really think you have been derelict in your duty” 102

12. “A compromise of aviation safety” 110

13. Reaching a “Breakdown” Point 115

14. “Every major FAA air traffic control facility is short of personnel” 122

15. “A family affair” 132

16. “Erratic speed control during enroute climb” 136

17. “That’s just the cigarette that’s on fire” 145

18. “We’ll turn off, go direct to the VOR” 152

19. “I did not participate in the NTSB’s investigation” 156

20. “Since we are in a real budget squeeze, aviation must take its lumps” 162

21. “We, the public, prefer simple answers” 166

22. “Poor cockpit discipline” 179

23. “At the very least, the controller should have requested a ­read-back” 182

Chapter Notes 187

Bibliography 203

Index 209

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The Crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 22: Completing the Record of the 1967 Midair Collision Near Hendersonville, North Carolina 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
ZSW More than 1 year ago
Air crashes terrify many fliers, but remarkably few stick in public consciousness, typically fading away quickly. This was particularly true in the 1967 case of Piedmont Airlines Flight 22, which collided with a Cessna in Hendersonville, NC. The investigation of a crash that owed its occurrence to flawed industry practices was swept aside by political events and the Vietnam War. The author writes with an informative, matter-of-fact style, with no sense of embellishment or melodrama, only an imparting of the facts. Details and background abound, adding flavor and interesting tidbits to the narrative. Impressively, the author largely avoids the ‘fourth-wall-knowledge-of-impending-doom’ trope that true-disaster books tend towards. This book is highly recommended to fans of the popular television show Air Crash Investigation, as the author draws from the same well of informative, analytical presentation (in fact, I found myself reading it in that smooth British accent). Well-researched and grippingly-written, any aviation enthusiast regardless of profession will find enjoyment in this immersive history.