The World: Fatal Appointment in Tenerife

When the giant Boeing 747 jetliner went into commercial service in 1970, air industry professionals and the public alike feared one thing: the horrendous disasters that could befall a plane built to carry nearly 400 passengers. Yet the 747 has proved remarkably lucky in the years since, carrying 140 million passengers and logging 2.25 billion air miles with only two fatal mishaps. When the first major wide-bodied aircraft accident did occur, near Paris in 1974, it was a Turkish Air Lines DC-10 that carried 346 people to their deaths. The 747 seemed destined...

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