Date: 23 Nov 96 03:36:21 From: Andrew Goldfinger <Andy.Goldfinger@jhuapl.edu> Organization: apl References: 1
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I previously posted a request for reports of STHOOTP ("Scare The Heck Out Of The Passengers") incidents. I received 10 replies, of which 9 were useable (one did not report total number of flights). Bear in mind that this is an unscientific survey. One person, for example, included flights from the 1950's. In addition, there was variablity in just what was considered frightening. In all cases I took the reports as given, that is: if it was reported as frightening I recorded it as such. For what they are worth, the data (including my own estimate) are as follows: Flights Incidents Percentage 592 3 0.51 170 3 1.76 200 0 0.00 600 2 0.33 200 1 0.50 1300 2 0.15 100 1 1.00 50 0 0.00 45 0 0.00 2600 5 0.19 In total, 17 STHOOTP incidents were reported in an estimated 5857 flight for an overall incidence of about 0.3 percent. The breakdown of incidents is as follows: turbulence: 10 wake vortex encounter: 1 sudden maneuvering: 2 lightning strike: 1 aborted landing: 1 sudden unexpected zero-zero landing: 1 electrical failure: 1 What do we conclude? Hard to say, but I think the following observations are reasonable: 1. STHOOTP incidents are infrequent, but not rare. The average flyer is likely to experience at least one frightening incident during their lifetime. 2. Turbulence is the most common cause. I welcome any further reports from readers.