Business: Jumbo and the Gremlins

Pan American executives knew that they would run into all sorts of problems in getting their 747 jumbo jets through what airmen call a new plane's "learning curve," and they tried to anticipate as many as possible (TIME cover, Jan. 19). But a variety of major and minor difficulties, some of which could hardly have been anticipated, last week turned the 747's first commercial flight from New York to London into an alternately frustrating and funny experience for the 352 passengers.

Engine Trouble. First off, the main portside door in the forward economy-class cabin refused to close. Operated by compressed air,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!