8. Last Days of The Concorde
The Crash of Flight 4590 and the End of Supersonic Transport
By Samme Chittum
The crash of The Air France Concorde Flight 4590 on departure from Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris on July 25, 2000, was almost as mysterious as it was tragic. How did it go up in flames, killing all 109 people aboard the supersonic transport plane along with four others on the ground? The answer to that mystery revealed a chain of calamity, which French investigators doggedly traced back to an improper maintenance event on a different airplane. It was ultimately revealed to have been staggeringly random and unlikely. In the book Chittum expertly retraces and explicates the lines investigators followed to solve the mystery and clear the design of Concorde from blame for the catastrophe. Still, the first and only crash of a Concorde was the beginning of the end for the sole supersonic transport in the world. Riveting reading.