Last Words

I hate how obsessive I can get sometimes. Ever since news broke of the Malaysian Airlines flight that mysteriously vanished while cruising across the South China Sea I've been scrounging around the internet trying to find every single tidbit of available information. In a world where nearly everyone's GPS coordinates is available online it's difficult to wrap one's head around how an entire plane full of navigational equipment and state-of-the-art communication systems would suddenly disappear into thin air. At the time of writing, no traces of the MH370 aircraft have been found, more than forty hours after its disappearance, and the web is abuzz with speculation.

It didn't take long until I was reading about plane crashes, such as the AF447 flight that went missing as it crossed the Atlantic which drew a lot of comparison to this incident (very different circumstances, imho). Subsequent link-hopping led me to this site, and how I regret ever stumbling upon it. Last Words is a collection of transcripts of cockpit voice recordings from planes that crashed, prefaced with a word of caution: "may be disturbing to some individuals". Quite apt.

While reading the AF447 transcript I kept hoping they make it in the end, never mind that I was completely aware of the fate of the flight beforehand. I mean, that Bonin dude. All he had to do was relinquish the controls and they would've been fine. He would've been fired, maybe, but alive.

A lot of the transcripts are depressing and poignant, with last words like "Ma I love you", and some are just downright eerie like one of the 9/11 flights. The only one that did not leave me with a heavy heart is that of N106US which, thanks to a pretty awesome pilot, managed to land in the Hudson after a bird strike on both engines without a single casualty.

Tomorrow I stop reading anything related to aviation failures, lest I render myself unable to board an airplane (have I mentioned I have a fear of flying?), but my thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the passengers of MH370.

No comments