Archive for February, 2010

Silence and Noise: The Twin Gremlins

By Laura Melton Tucker, February 28th, 2010

The worst air disaster in history occurred because of a breakdown in communication. In 1977, 583 lives were lost at the Tenerife airport when two 747’s collided. There were many contributing factors, but the main cause of the accident was a communication glitch. The two pilots reported their positions at the same time on the same frequency, which blocked them from hearing one another. On the foggy runway, they spotted each other too late to avert the disaster. It was a communication failure of tragic proportion.

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