THE RISE AND FALL OF THE DC-10 by John Godson

THE RISE AND FALL OF THE DC-10

KIRKUS REVIEW

Only six bodies were recovered of the 346 dead aboard the Turkish Airlines DC-10 which crashed about nine minutes out of Orly Airport last spring in the world's worst air disaster. Seven- teen kilometers from the crash (where everything human was now less than mincemeat) the six bodies were found mysteriously intact in a field. Witnesses say there was no smoke from the falling plane, and so an internal explosion is not considered the probable cause of the crash. How did the six bodies happen to be scattered so far? John Godson, who was on the site with the official French investigating team, suggests strongly that the answer lies in the aircraft itself: it was loaded with uncorrected structural defects, including a cargo door that could not stand pressurization during shakedown tests and was perhaps improperly closed by a non-English-speaking Algerian baggage master who could not read the operational instructions. Despite the fact that several design problems were not corrected, the DC-10 was ""rubber-stamped"" airworthy by the Federal Aviation Authority. Godson reviews the history of the McDonnell Douglas Aircraft Company, who made this death-trap, digs heavily into safety tests and reports, and also does a chilling job depicting the tragedy itself. These vast design failures are still there, on planes flying as if the great disaster had never happened. An appalling incident, graphically told.

Pub Date: Feb. 7th, 1974
Publisher: McKay