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Last entry: Douglas DC-10 makes the last passenger run.
However, what kind of retiree expects the last planned DC-10 passenger flights of the aviation world? As passenger services for the legendary, large-volume, three-engine aviation worker's horse come to an end at the end of the 20th centrury, the DC-10 won't quite vanish from the sky. DC-10 needs a three-man team - most passenger aircraft today work with a (cheaper) two-person team.
Biman has now promised a last opportunity for DC-10 enthusiasts (we know you're out there) grieving the end of an epoch to see the DC-10 in Action - even if you're not a speaker with an over night brand. Biman Bangladesh Airlines is planning to take the DC-10 from Dhaka, the Bangladeshi capitol, to Birmingham, England, for the last flight in February 2014.
It' s "a suitable end for an airplane that has faithfully operated Biman for many years," says the carrier, which is planning to sell on its website from the beginning of January onwards ticket sales for this particular incentive trip. "Biman CEO Kevin Steele says on the company's newscast page that we want these to go to real air travel fans and adds that, according to popular request, a few brief sightseeing tours from Birmingham could also be added to the DC-10's parting trip.
During 2007, Northwest became the last large airline to withdraw the DC-10 from passenger services in the United States. MacDonnell Douglas' famed (and sometimes notorious) jettliner recorded his first passenger flight on August 5, 1971, on an American airline tour between Los Angeles and Chicago. McDonnell Douglas manufactured its last DC-10 for Nigeria Airways in 1989. The plane would be hindered by a number of terrible crashes, among them a terrible accident on American Airline Flight 191 at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport in 1979 due to a separate power failure by a single blade just after take-off.
It would result in an FAA erection of all DC-10s in the United States for more than a months and fuel a broad general malaise over the DC-10 - despite the results that a service failure was largely the cause. Although only a few large DC-10 occurrences were actually due to mechanic problems and the airplane's overall performance would continue to be improved after construction faults were rectified, trust in the airplane on the part of the general population was never fully re-established.
"DC-10 had its fair share of high-level accidents," noted an article in the Los Angeles Times in 2007, when Northwest Airlines became the last large airline to withdraw from passenger services in the United States and replace it with an Airbus 330. "A more significant determinant behind the DC-10 legacy shaft is the fuel economy and costs.
Although today's harassed passenger doesn't exactly miss the DC-10s (let alone know what distinguishes one from, say, an MD-11), some of their former flyers have beautiful things to say about them. "DC-10 is a dependable aircraft, aeronautical, spacious and noiseless. A bit like an old Cadillac Fleetwood flying," remarked a spokesperson for the northwestern section of the Air Line Pilot Association when the aircraft were deployed in the United States six years ago.
And who would have thought that the last Cadillac Fleetwood to fly would make its goose-singing from Bangladesh? How sorry is it for Biman Bangladesh Airlines to see an old boyfriend go? "Hopefully you will join us in saying goodbye to a faithful, handsome plane," says Biman's Steele.
"Biman is about to be equipped with the latest developments in new airplanes and technologies."