Pacific Southwest Airlines (PSA) British Aerospace BAe 146  N348PS   (c/n  E2024)


                                   Looking for a more economical aircraft for its short haul stages, PSA ordered 20 (with options on another
                                   25) of British Aerospace's 146, the STOL (at least for a jet) and quiet four jet which began life as the
                                   Hawker Siddeley HS146.    Due to cancelltions of orders by airlines which were going under (the 1980s
                                   failure rate of deregulation upstarts was phenominal) they were able to get more or less immediate delivery
                                   of them from Hatfield.  The above shot taken by Randy Juran at San Jose Airport in August of 1986 out-
                                   lines the aircraft's salient features well.
                                   An incident occured on 7 December1987 which tended to marr the reputation of the 146 although it had
                                   nothing to do with the aircraft at all:   A recently fired USAir employee (this carrier was in the process of
                                   absorbing PSA - see below) used his now invalidated credentials to board Flight 1771 from Los Angeles
                                   to San Francisco.  He managed to smuggle a pistol on board and shot his former supervisor (he had been
                                   laid off for allegedly purloining airline property).  He then shot the flight deck crew (and probably himself)
                                   causing the aircraft to plummet to its doom near San Luis Obispo. All five crew members and the 37 other
                                   passengers were killed.   I was working in the Bay area at the time and had occasion to dispatch staff to
                                   San Diego (actually Tijuana) from time to time.  One employee of mine refused to fly the BAe 146 after
                                   this.  Admittedly this person was strictly of the "NIH school" ..... i.e. considered anything not built in the
                                   US as unairworthy!  (This attitude prevailed at the time [probably still does], amongst a certain class of
                                   employee - whom shall remain nameless!).

                                   Footnote on PSA:

                                    After American Airlines had purchased AirCal (PSA's most serious rival) in1986, and threw the might
                                    of their corporate power into the California market, the writing was on the wall so far as PSA was
                                    concerned.  The pressure had really mounted when Continental filled the gap left by the folding of
                                    Pacific Express.  USAir had had its eye on PSA for years.  Finally in 1986 the Board agreed to a
                                    merger.  In 1987 PSA operated as a Division of USAir., but by 8 April 1988 the last PSA flight
                                    departed San Diego for Las Vegas and the low cost carrier born 39 years earlier disappeared.
                                    The Grinning Birds were all repainted in USAir livery, sans, of course, their smiles....................


The smile of medford.