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Dublin: 10 °C Tuesday 21 October, 2014

Since 1948, 88 aircraft went missing without a trace – two off the Irish coast

Two RAF planes went missing off the coast of Ireland at Fastnet Rock in 1955.

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(Google Map/The Aviation Safety Network)

SINCE 1948, A total of 88 aircraft have been declared “missing”.

The Aviation Safety Network has compiled a list of all aircraft that have been reported to have never been found.

The majority went missing at sea, 62, while 25 went missing over land.

The list shows that 28 were passenger planes, while 21 were military aircraft.

The period where the most aircraft went missing was between 1960-1969 and 1970-1979.

The latest missing flight — Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 — the whereabouts are still unknown, with the latest information speculating that debris has been found off  the Australian coast.

However, while the number of aircraft gone missing without a trace may seem like a particularly high figure, many of the aircraft went missing during a time when technology was not as it is today.

Irish coast

The map shows that an aircraft went missing off the coast of Ireland in 1955.

On 11 January 1955, two Avro Shackleton planes – WG531 and WL743 – of Royal Air Force No. 42 Squadron departed RAF St Eval on a routine exercise off the Fastnet Rock, off Ireland.

The Aviation Safety Network states that the two aircraft left St Eval at 10.14am and 10.20am respectively to carry out a 15 hour patrol and search exercise.

Although they left with just six minutes separation, radio messages were received indicating that the two captains had adjusted their separation and that up to 8pm that night were flying at the prescribed 85 miles distance from one another.

From 8.58pm all contact was lost.

Both aircraft were missing and never found despite a three-day search. It is assumed that both aircraft collided.

More than 11 years later, the starboard outer engine of WL743 was trawled up off the southwest Irish coast, about 75 miles north of the assumed collision point.

Here is a list of all the missing aircraft and the circumstances of their disappearance – click here>

Read: Why didn’t passengers on missing flight MH370 use their mobile phones?>

Read: Millions search for flight MH370 using satellite imagery>

Read: ‘Alright, good night’ – last known words of mystery Malaysia Airlines flight>

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