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Mayday: Air Disaster

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Catastrophic incidents in aviation history are meticulously re-enacted, providing insight into what went wrong and if the crashes and near-disasters could have been prevented. Accounts from survivors combine with cockpit recordings and computer images to weave the gripping tales, and expert testimony reveals the hows and whys behind the events, some of which have resulted in important changes to aviation safety and regulations.

Latest episodes

aired 7 days ago
Tragic story from the Vietnam War when over 250 children, who were being airlifted to safety on a US Air Force C5A Galaxy, died in a mysterious explosion.
aired 7 days ago
Saudi Airways and Kazakhstan Airlines jets hit each other at 14,000 feet sending both planes spiraling to the ground.
aired 7 days ago
In September 1989, Partnair Flight 394 crashed into the sea killing all 55 people on board.
aired 7 days ago
The tragic circumstances surrounding the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 by terrorists.
airs in 7 days
After taking off from Taiwan, a China Airlines 747 suddenly disappears from radar and crashes, killing 225 people.
airs in 7 days
Experts investigate the collision of two planes over the Grand Canyon in 1956, uncovering a frightening problem that threatened the entire aviation system.
aired today
Minutes before they're scheduled to land in Zurich, the pilots of a routine passenger flight can't find the runway. They abort and power up the engines in order to climb, but they are too late.
airs in 7 days
In the worst U.S. crash in more than seven years, a Buffalo-bound flight stalls and plummets into a suburban home in 2009.
airs in 7 days
Two minutes after Scandinavian Airlines Flight 751 leaves Stockholm in 1991, smoke filters through the cabin and both engines fail, one erupting into flames.
airs in 6 days
Shortly after take-off, US Airways Flight 1549 encounters a bird strike and lands on the Hudson River.
aired today
British Airways' flight number 38 suffers from double engine failure and crashes near Heathrow in 2008.
aired 1 day ago
A design flaw sends American Eagle Flight 41-84 smashing into a cornfield outside of Chicago, killing all 68 people on board.
aired today
Adam Air Flight 574 crashes into the Java Sea after leaving Indonesia on New Year's Day 2007.
aired today
Investigators discover a shocking mistake when pilots must ditch their plane in the Mediterranean, killing 14 of the 34 passengers.
airs in 6 days
Investigation into the 2009 crash of Turkish Airlines Flight 195. Just before landing in Amsterdam, the plane mysteriously fell from the sky, killing nine people.

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Advanced computer graphics, forensic science, eyewitness accounts, interviews with experts, archival footage and re-enactments piece together in great detail the events that led to some of the biggest disasters of modern time.
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