Off topic: No-show rates for flights that crash: Searching for data
Thread poster: Nadejda Vega Cespedes

Nadejda Vega Cespedes  Identity Verified

Local time: 12:55
Spanish to Russian
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Mar 6, 2008

Dear all,

I remember reading about a study which suggested that planes that crashed or were hijacked tended to have above-average numbers of no-shows. Now I am interested in the details, but all I've been able to find on the Internet is various discussions with no specific reference to the data source. Any chance anybody here knows where to find hard facts on the study itself? Any help will be much appreciated.


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:55
Dutch to English
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Have read the same thing ... Mar 6, 2008

... somewhere.

I can't remember exactly where I read it offhand, but it was definitely about people who allegedly have a premonition that the plane is going to crash and so don't get on-board, or who sometimes even get off after boarding.

Try searching with "premonition" (or a synonym) as one of your search terms, it might help.

[Edited at 2008-03-06 21:12]

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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:55
English to Arabic
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Fiction Mar 6, 2008

I searched round the internet a bit, found quite a few sites talking of the study, till I found one attributing the study to a James D.L. Staunton.

A further search took me to the following discussion (Snopes is a great site which dispels urban legends):

"I read this one in Stephen King's the stand.
It was said by Glen Batemen *character* that out of all the plane and
train disasters were on average only 66 percent occupied. *His resourse
from a certain auther that wrote a book on this theory* Leading to the
theory that people have a vague physcic power to predcict such disasters."

"page 536 of the 1991 paperback edition.

The author of the study was a James D.L. Staunton. It was written in 1958. It was published in a sociology journal.

From what I am able to find in searching through Proquest, FirstSearch, and JSTOR Stephen King made the whole thing up. No one named James D.L. Staunton conducted a study on this. No one with the name Staunton, Stanton, or Stunton conducted any studies on plane crashes.

ETA: The only place I can even find the name is on sites dedicated to The Stand.";f=43;t=001140;p=1

[Edited at 2008-03-06 20:39]

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The Misha
Local time: 07:55
Russian to English
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If only such wonderfully gifted people existed! Mar 6, 2008

I'm sure they' be able to apply their wonderful talent to stock market speculations, make a bundle and never again have to worry about flying commercial.

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Nadejda Vega Cespedes  Identity Verified

Local time: 12:55
Spanish to Russian
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Thank you! Mar 6, 2008

Many thanks for your help, dear colleagues.

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