VOL. XXII, NO. 6
Piedmont Is First To Order Safety System
Piedmont has become the first United States
carrier to sign for a collision avoidance system
which tells a pilot that another aircraft is in
the vicinity and what maneuver might be
necessary to avoid it.
President T. H. Davis has signed a letter
of intent with McDonnell Douglas for a time-
frequency device labeled as EROS II.
The airborne electronic system automatic
ally transmits, every three seconds, its range,
closing rate with other planes and its altitude.
McDonnell Douglas also says it may be
used to warn pilots of ground obstacles and as
a landing aid if ground installations are pro
First models of the unit are to be delivered
to Piedmont in March of next year for certifica
tion testing in the Company’s Boeing 737’s.
Production equipment delivery is scheduled for
between January and April of 1973.
A low-cost collision avoidance system for
general aviation aircraft has also been develop
ed by McDonnell Douglas. Two of these units
will be delivered to Piedmont next year for test
ing with the EROS II.
During 11 years of research, the system has
been tested on more than 15,000 flights, most
of them military aircraft operating from Mc
Donnell Douglas headquarters in St. Louis.
Piedmont’s Vice President — Flight Opera
tions W. 0. Tadlock has been working closely
with McDonnell Douglas for several years on
this collision avoidance system. He said “As a
result of this testing we’re convinced that this
collision avoidance system is the greatest thing
that has been developed in aviation history
from a safety standpoint. We’re glad to be
one of the leaders in getting this pi'oject
Cost Not Final
Piedmont’s costs for the CAS have not been
finalized. The initial order is just for the 737
equipment. It will eventually go on all the
Accurate time keeping is the heart of the
CAS concept because the system relies on
measurement of time difference from the start
of transmission by one aircraft to the receipt
of that signal by another to determine the
distance between them.
Such accuracy (within one quarter of a
millionth of a second) is assured by atomic
clocks at ground stations and in some aircraft
and a constant correction of less accurate air
borne clocks by signals for more accurate time
Great care has been used in selecting the
minimum safe time interval — long enough
to preclude the need for abrupt evasive man
euvers, yet not so long that it calls for too
In level cruise, the computer determined
command to manuever is given 30 seconds
before a collision would occur.
Pilots of the collision avoidance equipped
planes get visual and aural signals telling them,
if needed, what evasion tactics to perform.
Employees Call Bluff Of
Piedmont's First HIjocking
Flight Operations V-P W. 0. Tadlock has
become a favorite subject for the news media
throughout Piedmont’s territory.
His latest adventures made headlines even
beyond their usual realm. The occasion was
Piedmont’s first hijacking attempt. The result,
well and widely known by now, was the best it
could have been, if the situation had to happen
Story Starts At Midnight
The story started shortly before midnight
on Thursday, June 17. Bobby Richard White,
26, of Kingsport, Tennessee, hitched a ride to
Winston-Salem’s Smith Reynolds Airport with
a man he’d met at a service station earlier in
White made a reference to “catching a jet
to go to a pop festival in Miami” and ap
parently paid his driver $20 to bring him to
Piedmont’s Flight No. 25, a Boeing 737, had
arrived at 11:55 p.m. from New York. The
Attractive New Attire For Female Agents
Just in time for the summer showing of
the newest in fall fashions comes a glimpse of
Piedmont’s new female agents’ uniform.
Orders for the jacket dress ensemble may
be placed immediately; deliveries will start
early in September.
The new uniform is navy blue, made of a
light weight, washable double knit. The dress
has side inserts, see sketch, of gray with a
golf fleck print. The sleeves are short and it is
The jacket, which is semi-fitted, has full
length straight sleeves, a geometric collar and
shaped patch pockets. Covered buttons and
bound buttonholes complete the finished look.
The girls will have until April of next year
to get their new uniforms. Beginning with the
first deliveries either the old or new styles
may be worn, but the newer outfit must be
worn, effective May 1, 1972.
J. B. Simpson of Chicago is the manufactur
er of Piedmont’s latest fashions.
Piedmont’s Flight Attendants also have a
new look. Story on page three.
PI Employee Stock
To help you keep up with the amount you
pay for Piedmont stock every month if you’re
buying it through payroll deduction, the Pied-
monitor publishes this periodic report of the
number of shares purchased, average price per
share and total investment in the previous
FOR MAY, 1971
Amount Invested $5,113.31
Number of Full Shares Purchased 601
Average Price Paid Per Share $ 8.50
Capt. W. O. Tadlock
Aided Sky Marshals
Attempt Is Foiled
passengers and crew, except for Capt. Leon M.
Fox had left the plane when White started
up the ramp steps.
Possible Late Passenger
Capt. Fox thought the hijacker was a pass
enger who had forgotten something on the
Capt. Tadlock was called at home and told
that a male passenger had boarded the aircraft
with a bag supposedly containing explosives,
asking to go to Cuba.
Fox told White that he would have to re-fuel
the aircraft and assemble a crew before they
Tadlock, along with two federal sky mar
shals who had come in on an earlier flight,
donned pilot uniforms in an effort to deceive
“I decided I would fake the duties of the
co-pilot,” Tadlock said. One of the sky marshals
was dressed as the first officer.
“I asked to come aboard and the hijacker
said ‘Okay, if you want to go to Cuba,’ ” Tad
Tadlock said he was forced to crawl on his
hands and knees from the steps to the cockpit;
“I’m going to put this bag on your back
and you’d better be careful,” Tadlock quoted
White as saying.
White was sitting on the jump seat behind
Capt. Fox. As Tadlock was crawling toward
the cockpit White spotted the sky marshal just
behind Tadlock. In an angry tone. White said
“I said only one could come in and you get off.”
When White, off balance, looked at the sky
marshal Capt. Tadlock made his move. He
grabbed the bag and the sky marshal grabbed
The bag contained only shoes and clothing.
White was then arrested by the FBI, who
had also been called to the airport. He was
jailed and bond was set the next day at $10,000.
At a news conference Friday morning Capt.
Tadlock said White appeared nervous and dis
turbed on the plane. “He closed his eyes very
slowly and blinked very slowly. He gave the
impression that his reactions would be slow.”
Prior to boarding the aircraft Capt. Tadlock
had talked with the man who had brought
White to the airport. The man said White
had been very careless in handling his travel
bag. With this information and his own obser
vations of White, Tadlock said he didn’t believe
that White actually had explosives in his bag.
The FBI also questioned the man who had
driven White to the airport. He was released.
In his report of the incident Capt. Tadlock
expressed his personal appreciation of several
individuals whose actions helped in avoiding
a full scale hijack.
He said that Capt. Leon Fox did an out
standing job in safely delaying the requested
He also noted that Station Agent Tom
Adams handled the entire situation with
exemplary efficiency and good judgment.