Aviation: The Ache & the Argument

The breakfast-table news about air disasters is achingly familiar. A plane was taking off—or perhaps landing. Some of the passengers, to be sure, were nervous; some always are, no matter how normal conditions may seem. Then, in the merest, most explosive instant of time, came death from flame and mangled metal.

So it was last week with an Eastern Air Lines DC-7 bound from Charlotte, N.C., to New York's Idlewild airport. Idlewild was blanketed by dense fog, and the plane circled above the field for 30 minutes before it got clearance to...

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