The Black Box: Cockpit Voice Recorder Accounts of In-flight Accidents

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9780006530459: The Black Box: Cockpit Voice Recorder Accounts of In-flight Accidents

Most people who have flown have experienced the fear of flying: moistened palms, white knuckles, a racing heart. The Black Box – transcriptions from the cockpit voice recorder – justifies that fear. Discover how it feels to be seconds from death.

When a plane goes down, it often takes hundreds of lives with it. The smash hit ‘Black Box’ TV series, screened in 1996, proved how perverse this fascination with the dangers of flying is. Flying is exciting because it’s frightening.

The Black Box is a shocking new selection of air disasters transcribed from the cockpit voice recorder retrieved from the wreckage of real life plane disasters. Here are the last moments of twenty-five crashes of varying degrees of annihilation recorded in horrifying detail. MacPherson documents each disaster, giving additional information surrounding the event, including the weather conditions and the details of key individuals involved. Innocent cockpit conversation can quickly turn to panic with the realization that a crash is inevitable and there are only moments left to live. But, sometimes, the wait for impact is painfully drawn out and the crew prepare for death with surprising calm. Sometimes there are survivors. More often, however, there are none. The Black Box is frightening and ghoulish. It is also impossible to put down.

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Review:

‘Once the book has caught your attention, it is hard to throw off its spell.’
The New York Times Book Review

From the Back Cover:

During a difficult, turbulent flight, everyone's darkest fears surface. The imagination runs wild with catastrophic possibilities that travelling higher and faster than any other form of transport can conjure. Sometimes those fears become reality.

HORROR AND HEROISM AT 37,000 FEET

When a plane gets into trouble there is incalculable, helpless horror. The results are often fatal, but sometimes disaster can be averted through the skills of the pilot or extraordinary good fortune. Every incident is recorded by the Cockpit Voice Recorder – the "Black Box" – that records the conversations of the captain and the crew.

In 'The Black Box' drama-filled case studies – disasters and near-misses – are transcribed blow by blow, from both the cockpit and passenger cabin perspectives. Some of the incidents are famous, like the 1996 Valujet crash in the Everglades and the ill-fated launch of the space shuttle Challenger; others range from commuter aircraft to jumbo airliner incidents. Few have ever been revealed in their entirety. All are absolutely gripping.

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