Impact!: A Horizon Guide to Plane Crashes

Mon Oct 14, 9-10pm, BBC4

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Time Out Ratings :

<strong>Rating: </strong>3/5


If this doc about modern-day air industry safety is anything to go by, the ‘Horizon’ strand is far from immune to the desire for hysterical hyperbole and a spot of scaremongering. In a voiceover that begins with lines like ‘improvements in aviation safety have been driven by the stuff of nightmares… air crashes’, you can almost see the exclamation mark.

It’s quickly followed by lots of horrific footage of crashes that make for sombre viewing, underlined by idiotic comments like ‘aviation is an incredibly complex business, so many things can go wrong.’ No shit, Sherlock. It’s enough to make nervous flyers turn off in droves, but if you’re one of them, don’t. Once past the idiot intro, there’s lots of fascinating footage from the ‘Horizon’ archives showing how previous crashes have been investigated to determine what went wrong, and how scientists have worked to ensure improvements. Everything is here from navigation advances and understanding of high altitude weather to brace positions, cabin materials and that most terrifying element of all – cockpit errors – making for a great modern flyer’s manual.

But if you don't make it past those crashes, here’s our three top tips: avoid flying in fog, learn the brace position, and don’t be scared of wings bending. We watch ’em so you don't have to.


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