"Mayday" investigates both high-profile and little-known air disasters to uncover how and why they happened. Mayday takes viewers on board ten different flights in trouble, recreating the tension and the pressure in the cockpit and cabin.
1. Miracle Escape: Air France August 2, 2005 - Flight 358 bursts into flames when it skids off the runway in Toronto during a raging thunderstorm. More than 300 passengers and crew have only seconds to escape the burning plane.
2. Falling from the Sky: British Airways June 24, 1982 - During a calm flight to Australia, smoke starts filling the cabin of a passenger jet. At the same time, the flight crew witness a bizarre shower of brilliant white sparks hitting their windshield. Within moments, the four engines of the 747 shut down. Just seconds before crashing into the Indian Ocean, the engines roar back to life. The terrifying flight changes the way pilots are trained and alters forever the understanding of how volcanoes can affect passenger jets.
3. Fire Fight: Air Canada June, 1983 - A small mechanical problem at the back of an Air Canada DC-9 quickly turns into an all-out emergency ten kilometers in the air. Twenty-three people die and the cause of the deadly fire can never be completely identified.
4. Missed Approach: Korean Air August 6, 1997 - Korean Air flight 801 crashes five kilometres short of its destination, the airport in Guam. More than 200 people on board are killed. The crash is the beginning of a crusade for one passenger determined to make air travel safer.
5. Hidden Danger: United Airlines / US Air April 3, 1996 - Two 737 planes crash within several years of each other. The similarities are striking but investigators are stumped. It takes a third near miss, for investigators to get the break they need to crack the case.
6, Panic Over the Pacific: China Airlines February 19, 1985 - A series of small mistakes causes a 747 passenger jet to fall 30,000 feet (10 kms) in just two minutes. Could a lack of sleep be behind the near disaster of China Airlines flight 006?
7. Out of Sight: Aeromexico August 31, 1986 - Two planes collide in mid-air and crash into a quiet Los Angeles suburb. There are more than 80 victims in the air and on the ground. Findings reveal a series of disturbing facts about congested airports.
8. Fog of War: Military April 3, 1996 - A military 737 carrying high-powered passengers crashes miles from its intended destination in Croatia. Was the accident an act of terrorism against the United States or were other factors to blame?
9. Vertigo: Flash Airlines January 3, 2004 - A plane crashes into the Red Sea minutes after take off. Was it terrorism? A mechanical failure? Or did the very experienced and respected pilot make a mistake that cost all on board their lives?
10. Ghost Plane: Helios Airways August 14, 2005 - A plane mysteriously circles the Athens airport. It doesn't answer air traffic controllers. The captain and co-pilot are missing but someone else is in the cockpit. Can investigators unravel the puzzle of flight 522?