Flight 191 hits the headlines again

Even the least superstitious of travellers might want to avoid Flight 191.

The flight number, which has already been linked to a number of tragedies, hit the headlines again this week when a JetBlue pilot suffered an apparent breakdown on flight number 191 from New York to Las Vegas ( see earlier story ).

"191 is one of the most tragic of flight numbers," reported Scott McCartney in his Wall Street Journal column The Middle Seat.

Delta Air Lines Flight 191 crashed in wind shear just before landing at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in 1985, killing 137 people including one man on the ground.

American Airlines Flight 191 was the DC-10 that had an engine rip off from under the wing, severing hydraulic lines and sending the jumbo jet into a field near the end of the runway. The 1979 crash killed 271 people on board and led to a grounding of all DC-10s until technical issues were resolved, the newspaper said.

"You won’t find a flight 191 at either Delta or American anymore. Airlines eliminate crashed flight numbers from use," McCartney wrote.

Since the most recent 191 incident, JetBlue Capt. Clayton Osbon, 49, has been suspended from his duties and charged with interfering with cabin crew.

By David Wilkening, TravelMole US

Friday, March 30, 2012

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  • Reckless Scaremongering

    Obvious nonsense - once you've scared off the least superstitious as well as the outright superstitious, who's left? The article gives a grand total of 2 tragedies "linked" to the number 191. Wow - conclusive! Is that the best Scott can do? How does this compare with the many hundreds of thousands of flights bearing that flight number since the inception of the jet age? You can hardly cite the JetBLue incident as such a tragedy, except as a personal one for the captain and his family, which is something that would warrant some reflection. Perhaps the JetBlue captain had read a stupid article like this and became convinced of his impending doom aboard flight 191. Being on the tipping point of psychosis, that would be all that was needed, and he played out his role dutifully, thus adding one more flight to the roster of those doomed by the number! I've heard there's a grassy knoll in Dallas, and if you dig down 6 ft 3 and 13/64th inches, there's a rock inscribe with the number 191. It was buried there by Nostradamus great great great great grandson on the same day the Wright Brothers first flew at Kitty Hawk, which they had attempted for the first time on 19 January 1901, albeit in a glider. He was himself lost, presumed killed, when the second world war aircraft he was flying in was lost somewhere over Bermuda.

    By Simon Lowe, Friday, March 30, 2012