Crash, boom and bloom: Amazing Plane Crash Survivor Stories

Accidentsand crashes cause untold grief and irreparable loss for those who perish, but for those who survive, it can be called nothing less than a miracle. Surviving fatal crashes is a life-changing phenomenon. While the phenomenon has inspired many stories and movies such as the Bruce Willis starrer Unbreakable, fact has often been stranger than fiction (and far more heartening) as these stories prove:

Kerala Man Survived Plane Crash and Won Lottery

The crash of than Emirates aircraft more than a year back caused headlines for many reasons, including the fact that 300 passengers escaped death. Among the crash survivors was Ahmad Abdul Khadar, who, after his miraculous escape had more good luck. He has won a $1 million lottery in a Dubai duty free raffle. “After the precious first gift (of life) I got another one... The latest gift has emboldened me to do more good things for the rest of my life,” he said.

John Diaz and Singapore Airlines 006

The flight had even taken off in heavy typhoon-like conditions that day in October 2000 when it exploded after a collision. Diaz remembers the plane catching fire and people actually burning to death strapped in their seats with what seemed to be their aura or soul leaving their bodies. The incident had a deep impact on him and made him resolve to live his life better.

Sergei Petrov and Tajik Air Flight 3183

In 1997, Tajik Air Flight 3183 crashed when it was on its way to Sharjah, UAE. There were 86 people on board and no survivors except Sergei Petrov, the 37-year-old flight navigator. The plane was in smithereens and its wreckage was spread out over a radius of about a mile; which makes it all the more incredible that this one man survived.

Cecelia Cichan and Northwest Airlines Flight 255

In 1987 Cecelia was just four years old when a plane crash killed 154 passengers and crew; including her entire family. The plane had just taken off from Detroit when it hit a light pole, crashing into a road and several vehicles. It broke up and burst into flames and even those motorists perished. Today, she still has the physical scars, but no actual memory of what happened.

The 1972 Andes flight disaster

Probably the most incredible survival story of all time, this was a chartered flight carrying 45 people that crashed into the snow-covered Andes. The passengers were a rugby union team, family and friends. About a fourth of those on board died in the crash, and many more died soon thereafter from the cold and their own injuries. 27 survived for several days before 8 were killed by an avalanche. Ultimately, there were 16 survivors who were salvaged in an incredible rescue mission, two months after the crash. The survivors had to subsist on the flesh of the dead to survive when the search was abandoned. Two of the passengers, Nando Parrado and Roberto Canessa, ultimately had the others rescued after a 10-day trek across the Andes.

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