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Do planes really fly themselves? Is turbulence dangerous? Can you (or your intestines) get sucked into an airplane toilet? These are the important questions we all ask ourselves as your plane leaves the tarmac (which, by the way, isn't called the tarmac). Let's get into it.

Planes are a marvel of modern technology, but when you're on one, they can often feel like terrifying metal deathtraps. Let's break down the most common myths and misconceptions about flying.

Join host Justin Dodd in an endless pursuit of the truth. If you have your own topic who's misconceptions you'd like to see debunked leave it in the comments!


Mental Floss is the home for all things curious. Subscribe here for new Mental Floss videos every Wednesday at 3pm (and don't forget the bell!):


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As anyone who's watched a movie sat in an airplane knows; a bad guy fireing a gun inside the cabin means certain disaster.  Just one bullet hole can depressurize the air craft causing it to plumet, uncontrolably, into the nearest mountain.  
What follows is a desperate fight for survival, and perhaps, even some cannibalism.  Because, I mean, even if there was airplane food left in the wreckage, would you even wanna? *dum tss*
But does that really make sense? Can one tiny hole in an airplane cabin really bring the whole thing down?  Not really.  
If someone actually fired a weapon in flight the bullet would likely peirce the alluminum siding of the plane, but the air leak would be so minor that the air craft's pressurization system would easily be able to compensate for it.
It is possible to shoot out a window creating a much larger, and potentially passenger sucking problem.  And, it's also not outside the relm of possibility to hit the fuel tank; which could, maybe, possibly, if a lot went wrong, cause an exploson. 
But, for the most part, fatal bullet holes in planes are a misconception created by Hollywood.  And, its far from the only mistakin idea we have about the air craft.
Hi!  I'm your host Justin Dodd.  Fasten your seatbelts, store your tray table in the upright and locked position, and join me as we get into some of the most popular myths about flying, in this high-altitude edition of Misconceptions.  
*intro music*
While I understand most people aren't nessesarily concerned with a shootout breaking out on a plane, safety in air travel has always been a popular subject.  After all, when you stop to think about it, the idea of a mulit-ton aircraft somehow surging into the clouds and maintaining altitude at or above thirty thousand feet can be a little hard to grasp.  Which brings us to our first misconception.
We understand how flying actually works.
Belive it or not, there's no one simple explanation for how planes stay aloft.

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