River Wissey Lovell Fuller

Letter to the Editor 1

May 2009

Peter responds to Ron's items in the April Pump

Letter to the editor.

Dear Ray,

There were a couple of articles in the latest 'pump' that caught my eye and ones that, for once, I knew a little about.

Firstly, Ron...loved the piece on the Bexwell Aerodrome. Anyone else who enjoyed Ron's piece, may I suggest you try to get a copy of STRIKE HARD by John H. Hilling (Alan Sutton Publishing. ISBN 9-780750-909693)... great book. Also there is a more definitive book being written at the moment by a local chap, whose name I forget (Old age...mine not his) that will be the bible on Bexwell. It is being sponsored by the good folks at Bexwell Kitchens, so they will have all the details.

The bit on airline safety also struck a chord, and although I left all my records in the office when I retired Ron, I think you will find Ryanair has a clean record as does EasyJet, FlyBe and possibly South-West (The real 'cheepo' carriers) as well as big boys like Quantas, Virgin, and Cathay.

I disagree about the conclusion on American carriers, especially their feeder-commuter lines, some are really bad and generally they fly much older fleets...though 911 may have helped to sort that. Many airlines in the states do not have a good record at all and recent multi-million dollar fines for not maintaining their aircraft or falsifying their records should give you a hint. I'm not sure how Olympic got in the list ...their last crash was in the 1970s in the days of propeller driven planes), as from memory they didn't seem too bad, but maybe Olympic Aviation, or Macedonian (Same owners' different airlines - 1 crash) got included in the equation. However the real 'doozie' you left out was Korean Air who is well into double figures and have a hideous record.

However you can comfort yourself with the general thought that statistically you would have to take a flight every day for over 380 years before you became involved in an accident that included a fatality (Not necessarily you!).

Thanks Ron...that got the memory box working overtime!

Peter Bodle

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