Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The true power of the Reno air race crash

I'm sure you have all heard of the tragedy near Reno, Nevada when a souped-up P-51 Mustang nose-dived into a crowd of spectators near the tarmac, killing 10 (so far).

Most of the videos I have seen were taken quite a distance away, so you see the explosion, but it seems like a major puff of dust. This video I found today is not like that. The person who filmed this was so close to the impact zone, I wouldn't be surprised if he was hit with flying shrapnel. The sound of the plane just before it hit, and the sound of the collision with the ground are truly horrifying:

Naturally, there are those who are calling for the air races to be permanently cancelled, and in some cases, all air races. I am not one of them. Heck, I didn't even know these air races happened every year, but now that I do, I would love to go!

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson


Anonymous said...

There has been much comparison to another crash where there was a huge fireball. The lack of flame makes me wonder if the fuel of p51 was somehow displaced during flight.

W.R. Chandler said...

Actually, I heard a caller on the Brian Sussman show on KSFO explain why there was no fireball.

In an effort to reduce racing weight, and because these races are only a few laps long, the planes only carry about 5 gallons of gas. This plane was halfway through the race at impact, so we are only talking about 2 or 3 gallons of fuel.