Old Jun 19, 19, 1:55 pm
Moderator: American AAdvantage, TAP, Mexico, Technical Support and Feedback, and The Suggestion Box
Join Date: May 2000
Location: NorCal - SMF area
Programs: AA LT Plat; HH LT Diamond, Maître-plongeur des Muccis
Posts: 62,713
Originally Posted by bchandler02 View Post
There's also this article that discusses the concern that some pilots may not be physically strong enough.

At what point is enough actually enough and these flying death traps are done for good?
That’s a question applicable for every aircraft, every pilot.

I personally opine your statement of “flying death traps” is hyperbolic, to say the least. If you’re an aeronautical engineer or designer, or have your ATR rating, I’m all ears.

Actual flying death traps:

De Havilland DH-106 Comet. The critical design flaw in these meant rapid metal fatigue induced by the pressurization cycles experienced by all aircraft caused tears originating at the corners of the square windows that resulted in disintegration in flight.

The extensive investigation and redesign allowed a redesigned DH-106 aircraft, including the successful Royal Navy Nimrod and the Comet 4C. AA never operated these, but a number of others did.

Lockheed L-188 Electra. This aircraft had a design flaw where at particular engine RPMs and conditions the wings would be shaken off (“"whirl mode flutter" issue) and the aircraft would crash. AA did operate these, and in fact was the launch customer.

Lockheed rectified the problem by performing a “LEAP” 20 day refit to all existing aircraft; the redesign was included for all new hulls. Some Electra’s are still flying, mostly as freighters or as the many P-3C Orion naval patrol aircraft. (They were popular for flying into / out of “hot and high” airports like TV!, even when their heyday was over, and Lockheed experienced a net loss with the Electra itself. A good lesson for Boeing?)

If the 3M8s were “flying death traps” and believed to be so by their pilots - some of who do have aeronautical training - they’d refuse to fly them, because they’d feel under death sentence for their passengers and themselves.

Certainly, you and anyone else with long lasting concerns should exercise choice and avoid flying on this aircraft. But I do suspect you’ll be among a minority of the flying public.

Safe travels.
JDiver is offline