Swissair Down (by Don Ledger)
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September 2nd of this year marks the 23rd anniversary of the crash of Swissair Flight 111 off the coast near Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia with the loss of 229 lives.
Every disaster has its own cause and its own effects. Undoubtedly, the effects of the September 1998 crash of Swissair Flight 111 into the unforgiving waters off Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia—killing all 229 people on board—has had tremendous personal consequences. The purpose of this book, though, is to reach back to events leading up to the crash, in order to discover what caused the worst disaster in Canada’s aviation history: to find out why, in 16 terrifying minutes, a state-of-the-art jetliner lost all navigational aids; and why, when only minutes away from Halifax International Airport, it turned back out to sea.
There were no survivors of Swissair 111 to describe what happened and almost nothing larger than hand-sized pieces from which to reconstruct the accident. But author and pilot Don Ledger carefully re-creates what took place in the cockpit of the stricken airliner, describing each link in a disastrous chain of events. With clarity, depth, and respect for all those involved, Swissair Down takes us from the pilot’s first distress call to the moment—16 minutes later—when the aircraft hit the sea and exploded, from recovery efforts aboard local fishing boats to a high-tech military search, and from the shocking complacency of the airline industry to our future safety as passengers.