The Daily Mirror

Los Angeles history

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November 2, 2007 |  6:58 am



Nov. 1, 1957
Los Angeles

This is a DC-7 coming in for a landing at Los Angeles International Airport and if you look carefully, you'll notice that the wheels are up. This is bad.

Although it's a relief that it landed safely and that no one was hurt, the real story is buried in the back of the paper.  And that's what's relevant today.

The City of Hollywood, United Air Lines direct flight from New York, circled the airport for more than two hours to burn off fuel and came in on a foamed runway after one of the landing gear got stuck and couldn't be shaken loose. Writer Walter Ames noted that the remote news van of KTTV Channel 11 arrived at LAX and was able to cover much of the incident despite heavy traffic "caused by curious motorists who immobilized streets for miles."

In what was apparently a record in the Stone Age of TV news coverage, the van was hooked up in 9 minutes and began transmitting pictures to Los Angeles viewers.

Although the TV crew apparently didn't get pictures of the landing, they arrived in time to photograph relieved passengers getting off the plane and a station engineer did a live interview with the plane's pilot, Capt. Charles Dent, when KTTV reporter Bill Welsh was stuck in traffic.

"Usually it takes from a half-hour to an hour to go through the intricate electronic maneuvers necessary to tune a remote truck into the transmitting towers," Ames wrote.

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