"Pre-owned,""near miss," "s/he"

Dennis R. Preston preston at PILOT.MSU.EDU
Fri Sep 28 23:08:00 UTC 2001

Righto. And the general public has no business knowing this jargon;
so we get to make up our own meanings. Good ones in this case, I
think. I could go for "It was a near miss, but the banking away from
the impending collision was so steep that lots of passengers were
hurt, some badly." Still didn't hit; still no damage to the plane.
Maybe I could go for, "The plane had to swerve so badly after the
near miss over O'Hare that it lost it's Johnson Bar and had to be
grounded." Note the "but." Implication of near miss - still no damage.

Hope ya'll know what a Johnson Bar is; hate to use technical terms.


>In a message dated 9/28/01 3:25:57 PM Eastern Daylight Time, preston at MSU.EDU
>>  I guess nobody missed my "ordinary language" proviso. (I don't read
>>   the Airman's Information manual).
>First, I was pointing out that your definition became incorrect when you
>included the statement "and there is no damage,"  It is not well known to
>non-aviators, but injuries and damage can occur from a near miss.  In fact,
>there is one scenario (luckily, very easily avoided) in which a near miss can
>cause one plane to crash.
>Second, any time you hear a news report about a "near miss", almost certainly
>the report was based at least partly on statements from
>    - the flight crew
>    - an airline spokesperson (or the owner of the plane, if not an airline)
>    - an FAA spokesperson
>and all of the above have some familiarity with the Airman's Information
>Manual (by the way, the "M" in "Manual" is capitalized).
>Controllers have their own jargon for describing these situations.  I doubt
>that the general public would recognize the terms "range ring", "deal",
>"snitch", "seven mile club", and "system fault."  However, I did once hear a
>controller say "two airliners got a close look at each other."
>            - Jim Landau

Dennis R. Preston
Department of Linguistics and Languages
Michigan State University
East Lansing MI 48824-1027 USA
preston at pilot.msu.edu
Office: (517)353-0740
Fax: (517)432-2736

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