AVIATION: For Distinguished Flying

On a routine flight from Des Moines to Lincoln, Neb. three weeks ago, United Air Lines flight 329 ran into the kind of trouble that usually means death. Climbing west over Iowa, the twin-engined Convair went out of control and nosed down.

Somehow, while the stewardess reassured the 36 passengers, flight 329's pilot and co-pilot got the nose up. The plane made a belly landing, skidded to a stop in a cornfield. The Convair was wrecked, but no one was seriously injured.

From the crew's description and the wreckage, United learned that a tiny...

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