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Word Count: 749
The Hindenburg The Inferno The arrival of the Hindenburg thirteen hours behind schedule at Lakehurst New Jersey on the evening of May 6 1937 promised to be routine The ship had an unblemished safety record on eighteen previous Atlantic crossings In fact no passenger had ever lost his life on any commercial airship Still because this was the beginning of the most ambitious season yet for airship voyages reporters photographers and news reel cameramen had their eyes and lenses focused on the great dirigible as it approached When disaster struck it was sudden Without warning flames gushed from within the Hindenburgs hull thirty-two seconds later the airship lay on the ground ravaged Never had the sights and sounds of a disaster in progress been so graphically documented Within a day newspaper readers and theater audiences were confronted by fiery images of the Hindenburg Radio listeners heard the emotional words of newsman Herb Morrison sobbing into his recorder Its burning bursting into flames and its falling on the mooring mast and all the folks This is one of the worst catastrophes in the world Oh the humanity and all the passengersMarben 58 When this floating cathedral called the Hindenburg burst into a geyser of flaming hydrogen there was a tremendous impact on the public although two thirds of the people on board survived Two theories about why it happened surfaced and this tragedy put an end to the short age of these massive airships The demise of the Hindenburg had a searing impact on public consciousness that far surpassed the bare statistics of the calamity Men and women escaped even from this inferno One elderly lady walked out by the normal exit as though nothing had happened and was unscratched A fourteen-year-old cabin boy jumped to the ground into flames and smoke He was almost unconscious from the fumes when a water-ballast bag collapsed over his head He got out One
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