Documentaries on flight disasters

A Foynes man has commenced work on a film series that will chronicle the flight disasters – which overall claimed around 300 lives – sadly associated with Shannon International Airport.
“I had previously made a short documentary briefly touching on all five disasters and there was huge interest in it, so I decided to do five separate pieces, explained Peter McGarry.
“Some extraordinary things happened. One concerns the KLM flight in 1954 that crashed in the river shortly after take-off.
“No one in the control tower realised it was missing until one of the passengers swam to the banks and crawled on all fours over the mud-flats to get help.
“He reached the airport three hours later and walked up to a group of baggage handlers to tell them the plane had crashed three hours previously. No one in the control tower had even missed it”.
In all, Peter explained, there were five major crashes involving fatalities: the TWA Star of Cairo, which had flown out of Paris in 1946; a Pan American flight, on which just one person survived, in 1948; the KLM plane that landed in the river in 1954; the Alitalia flight that came down in 1960; and the President Airlines disaster of 1961.
“There was a lot of tragedy involved in all of these incidents and the human stories are what I’m researching now,” he says.
“A lot of what I’ve found through my own research has been hugely added to by people who contact me when they hear about the series.
“I thought I had wrapped up one of the pieces when I got an email from a man who is a keen historian and had a treasure trove of material I could dive into again.”
Mr. McGarry hopes his work will be shown at the Richard Harris International Festival in the Autumn.