“Bracing for Impact” Brings to Life True Crash Experiences

Bracing for Impact is valuable reading for both pilots and passengers. Amazon

It probably can remain unspoken, but an airplane crash is not an item I care to list on my resume. As a professional pilot, that box is something none of us ever wants to check off in our career column. I’m also quite certain that absolutely none of my passengers would care to be participants either. But what if you had experienced such a traumatic event?

Two women who survived separate airplane accidents decided to co-author a book not only about their experiences but other survivors’ experiences as well. Lindy Philip and Robin Suerig Holleran had bonded with each other via a Facebook support group. They both saw the need to share these stories.

Bracing for Impact is a collaboration of real-life accounts told by the survivors from their perspectives. The stories include the 1977 crash of the Lynyrd Skynyrd band in a Convair 240; a Spanish DC-10 charter flight in Madrid; the American Airlines crash of an MD-80 in Little Rock, Arkansas; a United Airlines DC-8 near Portland, Oregon; and various other accidents involving general aviation airplanes.

Why would I recommend reading airplane horror stories? Having been trained in critical incident stress management (CISM) and having been involved in the aftermath of a major airplane accident utilizing my CISM skills, I found the survivor’s perspective fascinating. It has given me insight to the fears of my passengers, an opportunity that any of us with licenses from Private Pilot to ATP should value.

Bracing for Impact is not exclusive to the emotions of the crash experience. The circumstances of the event are also discussed. The book is valuable reading for both pilots and passengers. Check it out on Amazon.

Les Abend
Les AbendAuthor
Les Abend is a retired, 34-year veteran of American Airlines, attempting to readjust his passion for flying airplanes in the lower flight levels—without the assistance of a copilot.

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