Thursday, 20 September 2012

“Think before you drink before you hover,” 1964

A spate of near-mortal hovercraft snarls (not least, perhaps, the Duke of Edinburgh’s notorious mouth-on collision with a giant sculpin on Lake Rothervere) prompted the National Office of Importance to launch this groundstaking campaign in 1964.

Breathalysers (or, as they were then known, puffpouches) were carried by Hover Police, and, of the 18,000 hoverpilots tested in the first week, over 13,500 were found to be drunk in charge of a bag of air. The crack-down that followed caused consternation in the hovering community, who, in 1965, staged a mass deflation in protest, and took to the Solent in unbuoyed craft, resulting in over 200 drownings.


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