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15 Mysterious Plane Crashes That Changed Aviation Forever

15 Mysterious Plane Crashes That Changed Aviation Forever


It’s true that there’s something really compelling about airplane accidents because of the scale of their drama and destruction. Therefore, such dreadful crashes in mid-air seem to be so gripping when it comes to bedtime stories. Indeed, all those mysteries about airplane crashes are so engrossing that you almost feel like you’re watching some wicked drama-fueled movie. The only difference would be that we’re not even close to the Hollywood industry here. Rather, all of these 15 plane crashes really happened and they still make us wonder what might have gone wrong.

Presently, if you or a friend of yours is just about to get on a plane, you’d better spare them the exclusive details on this hot theme. After all, reality has its own limits, but a person’s imagination doesn’t. In other words, giving in to fear and panic is the worst step anyone could take. And guess what, it doesn’t even matter whether it’s a plane crash or a bloody car accident. Besides, there’s actually a greater chance of dying on your way to the airport anyway. Moreover, there are thousands of flights which take off and land safely every single day. So, don’t sweat it!

15. Korean Airlines Flight 007 1983


Often presented as one of the deadliest airplane accidents ever, the Korean Airlines Flight 007 is still a great mystery that’s hard to either explain or assimilate. Not only is it extremely complicated to break down into pieces, but it’s actually one of the bloodiest accidents in history. Rumor has it that the flight to Seoul couldn’t make it due to an “inappropriate use of the navigation system”. So how about that?

Shortly after taking off, all seemed pretty normal until the plane deviated to the north and changed its route towards the Soviet Union. What’s curious is that it kept going like this for more than 5 hours. The scariest fact is that the plane happened to enter the Soviet Union airspace. Sadly, that was the day when a missile test had to be scheduled. Besides, the relationship between Korea and the former Soviet Union weren’t at their best anyway. Eventually, the plane crashed near Near Moneron Island generating 269 fatalities and 0 survivors.

14. TWA Flight 800

via On Point with Tom Ashbrook

Meet the story about Trans World Airlines Flight 800 which simply couldn’t make it. On its way to Paris, France, the airplane burst into flames and it didn’t wait too long before crashing into the vast Atlantic Ocean. After taking off at the John F. Kennedy International Airport, the Trans World Airlines Flight 800 caught fire and eventually exploded spreading death after it. Naturally, there’s hardly anyone who could run away from such a terrible death anyway. As for that, the number of the dead passengers goes beyond 200 as the likely cause is believed to be a short circuit.

13. American Airlines Flight 191, 1979

via YouTube

The unfortunate year was 1979 and the location happened to be O’Hare Airport, Des Plaines, USA. Actually, Flight 191 is still believed to be an example of an extremely dreadful airline accident which took place on American land. The model did earn itself quite a notorious reputation regarding its safety regulations. Besides, rumor has it that the last maintenance on this airplane actually resulted in immeasurable damages of the pylons, which had to attach the engines to the airplane. Naturally, this speaks volumes about the possible scenario later on. As a result, one of the unstable engines really broke off. Eventually, it shut down all of the electrical systems, spilling hydraulic fluids while taking quite a colossal section of its left wing with it. Total Fatalities: 273, 0 survivors

12. Iran Air Flight 1988

via Lists10

The fateful year was 1988 when Iran Air Flight Number 65 couldn’t reach its final destination safe and sound. Much like the previous bloodcurdling accidents, including the not-so-friendly relationship between major military forces, the Iranian Airbus got shot down over the Persian Gulf. All of this took place in the midst of heated and bloody warfare between Iraq and Iran. According to facts, the Vincennes thought that there was an Iranian F-14A Tomcat fighter coming their way. Surely, the Navy did hail the plane a couple of times but with no success. Eventually, the crew of the Airbus must have thought that these calls were hardly directed towards them. As a consequence, the Vincennes fired two missiles which unfortunately destroyed the Airbus completely. Fatalities: 290, 0 survivors.

11. 1996 Air Africa Crash

via The Independent

The frightening airplane accident happened in 1996 in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In truth, this may be the deadliest crash ever regarding the fatalities and damages in general. Indeed, the information and details about this scary event are quite scarce as this is probably due to the specific location in which it occurred. Previously leased from Russia, the plane was considered fueled to the maximum levels as it was overloaded with weapons which had to be handed over to the Angola military group. The cargo aircraft did take off but couldn’t reach the needed speed for taking off. Shortly after it flew away, it crashed right into a street marketplace. The airplane caught fire leading to the deaths of more than 300 individuals.

10. Saudia Flight 163, 1980

via sooziQ

Here we go with another spine-chilling event that still makes us lose sleep at night. Meet the Saudia flight 1631 which still has people awe-struck at the thought of its scale of damages and fatalities. The doomed location happened to be Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Just a couple of minutes after it took off from Riyadh, the plane’s cargo compartment burst into flames. Naturally, the crew was in a rush to take care of the smoke while thinking about what to do next. Finally, all crew members returned to the airport, however this “small issue” made them shut down the middle engine. In the end, the aircraft may have landed safely; but the plane couldn’t help rolling down the runway. For the most part, the passengers died of smoke inhalation due to the crew’s failure to evacuate them on time. Fatalities in total: about 300 +.

9. Iran Ilyushin Il-76 Crash, 2003


Much like the Air Africa crash, we’ve got scarce info about the dark details surrounding this awful event which happened back in 2003. Considering the total number of deaths in this accident, it’s safe to say that this Iranian II-76 Crash sounds like perfect nonsense. Unlike most of the airplane crashes which were shot down by missiles, the famous airplane accident might have occurred due to the bad weather and high winds accompanied by the thick fog as well. Naturally, terroristic actions and other issues from a mechanical viewpoint were also taken into consideration. However, all of them were only suggestions. Only God knows what really happened with that airplane.

8. Turkish Airlines Flight 981, 1974


With more than 346 fatalities and zero survivors, the Turkish Airlines Flight 981 absolutely deserves to be featured on our scary list of deadliest airplane crashes in history. Actually, it’s exactly this case that happens to be regarded as one of the scariest accidents EVER. The fateful year was 1974 and the unlucky aircraft happened to be owned by Turkish Airlines. While flying from Paris to its final destination in London, the airplane felt a bit overloaded due to a British strike back at that time. While flying over Meaux, France, the cargo hatch just blew off. Maybe there was some kind of an explosion because the cabin floor that was just above the cargo hold simply collapsed. As a result, the lines connecting the flight controls were completely destroyed.  The pilot did fight to get in charge of the situation. Sadly, it was all in vain because the plane crashed into a forested area generating more than 300 fatalities.

7. Charkhi Dadri collision, 1996


Here we go with another horrifying story that talks about the inevitable collision between the Saudi Arabian Airlines Boeing 747 and the Kazakhstan modified military plane. Sadly, Flight KZK 1907 wasn’t going to land anytime soon given the hair-raising circumstances. The Kazakhstan modified military plane had about 27 passengers on board. Indeed, the plane had to descend to 4600 feet and remain at this altitude. Also, there was another place at their current altitude. Supposedly, they didn’t get the message from the Air Traffic Controller to descend and stay at this altitude. Shortly after, they began ascending again until directly crashing into the Saudi Arabian jet. In truth, they could have flown right by the Arabian jet as this could have saved the lives of about 350 people…

6. Japan Airlines Flight 1985

via The Japan Times

Our next airplane crash is perhaps one of the craziest and most gruesome accidents that has ever happened. The fearful location is Ueno, Japan, when more than 500 passengers have met untimely deaths. Thankfully, this is one of the few cases when there were actually any survivors. Gladly, there were 4 individuals who seemed as though they were more cunning than Death itself. In fact, they cheated Death back in 1985 when the scheduled Flight 123 was heavily packed during some of the busiest periods in Japan. The plane didn’t wait long before its rear bulkhead simply failed which caused a major breakdown in all of the hydraulic systems. Out of any luck, the pilot couldn’t take control of the plane. The only way to do it was through the differential engine thrust. However, it could only offer a very limited control. In the end, the plane landed …but in various pieces. Total Fatalities: 500 +.

5. Tenerife Disaster, 1977


If you think about this, there is surely a well-founded reason why this airplane accident was called the Tenerife Disaster. The year was 1977 and nobody could have been able to foresee what’s about to happen shortly after the plane took off. Due to a terroristic attack at the Las Palmas International Airport, many of the smaller aircraft were forced to divert their courses and land at the Los Rodeos Airport on Tenerife. Referred to as a much smaller airport that simply couldn’t hold so many airplanes, the KLM was on its way to take off at the same time while the Pan Am aircraft was already ready to exit the fourth gate. At the same time the fog was settling in faster and thicker than ever. It’s sad to say that the two airplanes collided as Pan Am tore off the top of KLM plane. The survivors were only 4, but the fatalities – more than 500.

4. Japan Airlines Mid-Air Incident 2001

via 50 Sky Shades

As unbelievable as it seems, this sorrowful story talks about the mid-air collision of a Japanese aircraft with another plane that was flying towards it at the same altitude. Somehow, the two Japanese airplanes couldn’t go past each other, and instead they collided and crashed mid-air somewhere near Yaizu, Shizuoka, Japan. Thankfully, the scary event caused more casualties than fatalities; but this doesn’t mean that the mid-air collision didn’t have the potential of the previous spine-chilling crashes. Indeed, it must have been their lucky day!

3. 3 March 1974; THY DC10-10; near Paris, France

via SlidePlayer

It was March 3, 1974 and that airplane was about to have its last flight without having the slightest bit of clue of its disastrous ending.While ascending, the aircraft’s rear cargo door simply blew out after being incorrectly closed. All of this led to a major decompression which damaged the main cabin floor alongside some of the control cables within the same area. Sadly, the crew didn’t find a way to take control of the situation on time. Thus, the aircraft crashed resulting in more than 330 deaths of the passengers and the crew members. The unfortunate event took place somewhere near Paris, France.

2. Lauda Air Flight 004

via The 9/11 Truth Movement

Much like the previous accident, the airplane took off without having a clue of the dreadful outcome of the flight itself.  While flying, the airplane broke up in mid-air so mysteriously. All of this happened back in 1991 and the doomed location was near the Burma-Thailand border. Naturally, there were many reports and investigations that followed the scary event. Eventually, the plane crashed with Zero survivors after the thrust reverse, which was on one of the wings, caught fire. The accident brought the death of more than 200 passengers including the crew members.

1. Aftermath movie: the scary airplane crash that really happened

via thedullwoodexperiment

Have you seen the Aftermath movie? The drama-fueled movie production recreates another pretty scary airplane accident that’s actually based on actual facts. Indeed, the drama recounts the story of how the lives of two men become intertwined after a devastating airplane crash. As if this is not heart-breaking enough, the plot is based on a true story. There was a man waiting for his family to come home, but the flight wasn’t going to reach its scheduled destination. The true event that inspired the tear-jerking movie took place somewhere outside of Überlingen, Germany. A passenger plane coming from Moscow crashed into a cargo plane in mid-air leaving all passengers dead. The Swiss air traffic controller who was in contact with both of these planes was cleared of responsibility later on.

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