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The Mystery of Flight 427


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About the Author

Bill Adair covers aviation, national politics, and Congress for the St. Petersburg Times. He has won numerous awards, including the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Washington correspondence.


In 1994, a Boeing 737 operated by USAir suddenly and inexplicably nosed over and went into an uncontrollable dive. In 28 seconds, some 132 people died. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigators worked for five years to determine the cause. While NTSB, the FAA, Boeing, the pilots' union, and the airline pursued the engineering issues, survivors and lawyers pursued the personal need for closure, revenge, and compensation. Each party had its own agenda, and orchestrating the many voices over a lengthy and frustrating investigation was difficult. Adair, a writer for the St. Petersburg Times, closely follows the investigation as it creates and discards hundreds of theories, from bird impact to Mafia assassination. He dissects the enormously complicated investigation and ably explains the many competing issues that make aircraft disasters so difficult to bring to closure. His examination of the behind-the-scenes work that shapes airline safety policy is detailed and absorbing. Recommended for aeronautics, public policy, and journalism collections. Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army Combined Arms Research Lib., Fort Leavenworth, KS Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

"Bill Adair has done it right."--USA Today

"An informative and highly readable book, of interest to a wide public in an age when the safety of air travel is understandably on everyone's mind."--Wall Street Journal

"A compelling mystery in a book of first-rate journalism."--Publishers Weekly

"Adair's patient and sharp reporting has given birth to one of the best books in a highly sensitive category, flight safety."--Aviation Week & Space Technology

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