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Passenger JET is crashed into the desert ON PURPOSE [VIDEO + PICS]

jet

The Discovery Channel and Channel 4 filmed the impact of a Boeing 727 (pictured) in the Mexican desert for a documentary exploring the effects of a 'serious, but survivable' crash-landing. The pilot ejected a matter of minutes before the aircraft was remotely crashed into the ground, while crash-test dummies and dozens of interior cameras collected the data. Executive producer Sanjay Singhal said: 'It has never been safer to fly, but we want to use this as an opportunity to provide scientific data that might help to improve passenger safety in those extremely rare cases when a catastrophic aircraft accident does occur.'

  • Boeing 727 crashed deliberately for documentary exploring the effects of serious impacts on planes and people
  • Jet, which can carry 170 passengers, ripped in two as it smashes into ground moments after pilot ejects
  • Loaded with crash-test dummies and cameras in first deliberate aircraft crash since NASA's 30 years ago


Groundbreaking: With its fuselage ripped in two, the deliberate crash-landing of this Boeing 727 in the Mexican desert shows just how devastating such an impact can have

Groundbreaking: With its fuselage ripped in two, the deliberate crash-landing of this Boeing 727 in the Mexican desert shows just how devastating such an impact can have. The collision was filmed for a documentary and subjected to scientific tests in an effort to further understand 'serious, but survivable' crashes and improve safety

With its fuselage torn to shreds and emergency workers seemingly looking on in vain, there was surely only one fate for the passengers of this Boeing 727.

Just as well, then, that those on board were only crash-test dummies used for a groundbreaking experiment into the effects of jet disasters.

The impact was pulled off deliberately for a documentary by the Discovery Channel and Channel 4 exploring the results of a 'serious, but survivable' crash-landing. The result is a terrifying collision which rips off the front of the jet in a cloud of sand, debris and twisted metal.

Scroll down for video of the crash

 
Wrecked: The experiment was designed to study the crash-worthiness of the aircraft's airframe and cabin as well as the impact of such disasters on the human body

Wrecked: The experiment was designed to study the crash-worthiness of the aircraft's airframe and cabin as well as the impact of such disasters on the human body

They flew the Boeing over a remote part of the Mexican desert before allowing it to smash into the ground. On this occasion the jet, which can carry up to 170 passengers, contained only crash-test dummies and dozens of interior cameras to film the sequence.

A pilot had earlier flown the jet out to a Mexican desert and ejected a matter of minutes before the aircraft was remotely crashed into the ground.

 

The experiment was designed for scientists to study the crash-worthiness of the aircraft's airframe and cabin as well as the impact of crashes on the human body.

It is the first time in almost 30 years a passenger plane has been crashed on purpose for a scientific experiment. The last time was in 1984 when NASA teamed up with the FAA to crash a Boeing 720 into the Mojave Desert in California, USA.

A deliberate crash-landing in the Mexican desert
The plane nears the ground in a remote-controlled crash
The plane smashes down in the Mexican desert

 

Going down: The Boeing 727, which can normally carry 170 passengers, plunges into the ground in a remote-controlled descent moments after the pilot ejects

Amateur footage of the crash shows the plane heading into the desert floor while a helicopter flies alongside with a film crew.

The latest experiment is expected to give a better insight into a crash landing thanks to the benefit of improved filming and remote control technology. The show is the result of four years' work by London-based TV company Dragonfly Film and Television Productions.

Sanjay Singhal, executive producer of the documentary, said: 'We felt the time was right to do it again.

'It has never been safer to fly, but we want to use this as an opportunity to provide scientific data that might help to improve passenger safety in those extremely rare cases when a catastrophic aircraft accident does occur.

'This has been an extraordinary feat of organisation, involving up to 300 people on location, including the production team, pilots, experts, risk management, plus local crew, military, fire teams and police.'

The plane was crashed in a remote and unpopulated part of the Sonoran Desert of Baja California, Mexico. The location was chosen after an extensive international search to find a suitable location offering the perfect conditions for this ground-breaking scientific project.

Dust and debris billows into the air
Leaving a trail of dust as it careers into the ground
Hidden by a cloud of debris

 

First for 30 years: The aircraft, which was loaded with crash-test dummies and cameras, sends sand and debris shooting into the air as it careers into the desert floor

For safety reasons, an exclusion zone at the crash site was manned by security teams, as well as the Mexican military and police. Ahead of the crash, a full safety review of the project was undertaken by the highly-qualified pilots and commanders as well as the Mexican authorities which concluded that it was safe for all concerned.

Following the crash, the aircraft will be salvaged and an extensive environmental clean-up operation is being carried out by a reputable agency with the full co-operation of the Mexican authorities.

David Glover, Channel 4 senior commissioning editor, added: 'This is a ground-breaking project, allowing a team of leading international scientists and crash investigators the first chance for a generation to study the crash of an entire passenger jet.

'The scientists are also looking at passenger safety, plus new 'black box' flight data recording technology.

'They have been hugely enthusiastic supporters of the project and couldn't wait to get to the crash site. Despite long careers, none of them have seen a plane crash before their eyes like this before.

'We hope that this documentary will provide valuable new scientific results as well as giving passengers vital information about how they can improve their own chances of surviving the extremely unlikely, but frightening, prospect of being in a serious plane crash.'

Channel 4 says it will not be releasing official footage of the crash until shortly before the documentary is due to be aired later this year. 

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Comment by evolution on May 1, 2012 at 4:52pm

In my humble opinion I really think that they should start building planes (Commercial Planes) like how they build military cargo planes where the back opens up. Building like that, allows the seats to be made with parachutes in them so in case of emergency you’ll still have a chance at surviving.... meaning the back opens and the seats slide out and parachutes automatically deploys.

Comment by Hugh on May 1, 2012 at 2:57pm

If this is the only test that will be conducted, as expensive as it is, the final data will still be insufficient.  What about a water crash, a crash in a dense forest area?  Will a passenger's likelihood of living be about the same?

Science and discovery is very expensive. 

Comment by evolution on May 1, 2012 at 10:12am

Science is a very expensive tool.

Comment by StokeS on April 30, 2012 at 10:37pm
Wonder how many villages that plane could have fed?
Comment by ann-marie on April 30, 2012 at 10:21pm
Waste of money

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